BEYOND: Diversity speaking event

5 star event to feature the topic of diversity dubbed "MINDS Aflame"

If you’re looking for an event to go to Thursday, Feb. 26, look no further than MINDS Aflame, a 5-Star Event that be featuring an array of speakers.

“All issues covered at MINDS Aflame are linked to the ‘Diversity’ theme of this year’s BEYOND Program,” said Martin Healey, the BEYOND program manager. “We have invited 10 speakers and performers from various backgrounds. Students, faculty, and business and performance professionals will link their experiences and expertise to help share our Diversity message, each fitting their message into only 12 minutes.”

The event will be held on Thursday, Feb. 26 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the University Center room 202.

“The main purpose of the BEYOND Program in general is to facilitate dialog about important issues beyond what can be covered in the classroom, and this year this important issue is diversity,” Healey said. “With events like MINDS Aflame, and the many BEYOND events throughout the year, we would like to increase awareness and acceptance of diversity, which I believe is much needed at a campus that is becoming more and more international and diverse.”

The Speakers and performers for this event will be divided into three timeslots. The first slot from 10 to 11 a.m. will include Daniel Cronk on “Turning Passion into Action,” Patrick T. Randolph on “Diversity in Neurology,” and Andy Phelps on “Diversity of Abilities.”

Time slot two from 11 to 12 will feature Sacramento Knoxx with a piece called “Creating the Noise,” Mike Mueller on “Diversity in Sexual Orientation,” and Enefe Adaji on “Diversity and Humanity.”

The final slot from 12 to 1 p.m. will feature the performance group ‘Act on Racism,’ Mark NeCamp on “Diversity in Religion,” David Pilgrim on “Stories of Activism and Inclusion” and Pierce Hollingsworth on “Diversity in a Multicultural Marketplace.”

“By listening to speakers and performers from various, diverse backgrounds, students are confronted with new perspectives which they might not have thought about before. MINDS Aflame also looks at diversity from many different angles,” Healey said.

Healey also said that events like MINDS Aflame can be very empowering, for anyone who attends. “I have personally experienced the empowerment,” Healey said. “I’m very grateful for being given the opportunity and responsibility, as an international student, to run the Office of International Education’s BEYOND Program this year. As for empowerment of other students, we highly encourage student participation in these events and will be working even closer with students for ‘BEYOND: Globalization’, the next installment of the BEYOND Program.”

“By working on the BEYOND Program, I have learned that the concept of diversity can be applied to all aspects of life,” Healey said. “An angle that I wouldn’t have immediately thought of is disability. This is why I’m very interested in what Andy Phelps, film maker and author, has to say about what life is like for people with disabilities around the world. I’m also looking forward to President Eisler attending the event, and excited and honored to be introducing him on Thursday,” said Healey.

“Last but not least, I’d like to point out that a great event is only great with an audience,” Healey said. “This is why I’m particularly looking forward to you, the students, faculty, staff and the Big Rapids community, and would like to invite you all to this 5-Star Event.”