The Division of Student Affairs welcomed new administrators at the start of this academic year. WSN spoke with the recently added members about their goals and aspirations for the new year.
France has devoted six years to bettering programs at NYU. He began working at the university in 2002 as the coordinator of Social Justice Programs, took a hiatus in 2005 and returned in 2009 as the director of the LGBTQ Student Center.
In his new position as assistant vice president for Student Diversity, France is in charge of staff at the department and maintains events like the Martin Luther King week and NYU Portraits: VOICES of a People.
What France loves the most about his job is that the university is always pushing its limits.
“NYU is always trying to make events better, more interesting and cutting edge,” he said. “There is always the opportunity to create.”
When France is not busy creating new programs for students, he is discovering eateries around the Village or running into celebrities.
“The first summer I was here I met Lenny Kravitz at the gym.” Fance said. “It was 13 years ago but it seems like it just happened.”
Raised in the South Bronx, McTyson had always wanted to come to NYU. Though she attended the University of Massachusetts Lowell, she said she developed an interest in higher education careers while working in the UMass Student Activities Office.
“I’d done a program when I was in high school where I actually was part of a program for high school seniors that were looking into going into the medical profession,” McTyson said. “So I’m not in the medical profession but I did have a lot of kind of first hand exposure to college through that at the medical school.”
As the new director of the Center for Student Activities, Leadership and Service, she personally advises 11 clubs, meets with the Student Senators Council and approves contracts for club events that involve non-NYU entertainment.
She also said she hopes to keep student development at the forefront of everything
Like many students and faculty members, Celiany Rivera-Velazquez did not start her journey to NYU in the United States.
She grew up and attended school in Puerto Rico before coming to the United States to pursue a doctorate degrees in Media Communications and Gender and Women Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
“I’ve always been interested in that merge, that combination that happens in between what I would say is gender and sexuality and art,” Rivera-Velazquez said. “The marriage of gender and sexual and art and performance has always been something that I am very interested in.”
She started her work at NYU as the assistant director for the LGBTQ Student Center in 2009 and is the first woman and immigrant to hold the position.
“Being part of the moment in which you convince somebody that LGBTQ populations are worthwhile to invest in,” she said. “I’m really, really excited about the opportunity to have that voice and to have that power.”
A version of this article appeared in the Thursday, Sept. 20 print edition. Marilyn La Jeunesse and Deborah Lubanga are contributing writers. Email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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