MCAS Advocates Program

MCAS Advocates and MCAS Student Advocates play a critical role in engaging and empowering AALANA (African, Latin, and Native American) students to successfully graduate from RIT on time while closing the achievement gap by building community. This program increases the communication and collaboration between MCAS (and by extension, the Division for Diversity and Inclusion) with RIT’s academic units. This program combines successful RIT AALANA students in collaboration with a professional staff/faculty advocate from the college, appointed by their respective deans. Together they will be in positions to influence change in their colleges through programming and directed outreach initiatives.

Objectives

  • Strengthen and grow the RIT AALANA community
  • Build trust and advocacy
  • Increase student persistence

MCAS Advocates

  • Advisor to the MCAS student advocates to ensure they are in alignment with the university strategic plan in regards to their social and professional programs and outreach.
  • Meet with MCAS and other MCAS Advocates on a monthly basis to discuss students’ academic success and outreach initiatives.
  • Help with faculty and student introductions and interactions.
  • Represent MCAS to the students, faculty, and staff in their respective colleges.
  • Provide a constant contact/presence for AALANA students in their college.
  • Advocate for and advise AALANA students when applicable.

Meet the MCAS Advocates

Nykki Matthews

Director of WIT, Community Engagement and Student Diversity Initiatives
Dean’s Office
College of Engineering Technology
585-475-4576

Ashley Jackson

Academic Advisor
University Advising Office
Academic Affairs
585-475-7130

Ricardo Figueroa

Interim School Co-Director
School of Film and Animation
College of Art and Design

Kristy Mooney Graves

Associate Director Student Services
Dean’s Office
College of Liberal Arts
585-475-5611

Michael Cross

Senior Staff Specialist
Dean’s Office
College of Science
585-475-6660

Daniel Stafford

Assistant Dean for Academic Services
Dean’s Office
Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences
585-475-4792

Venessa Mitchell

Director of ECCO and Student Programs Coordinator
Dean’s Office
Kate Gleason College of Engineering
585-475-2162

Tim Albert

Director Student Life Team
Student Life
National Technical Institute for the Deaf
585-286-2272

Stephen Luxmore

Principal Lecturer
Department of Management, International Business, and Entrepreneurship
Saunders College of Business
585-475-7161

Melissa Piciulo

Academic Advisor
Academic Advising and Student Services
Academic Affairs
585-475-4233

Dewey Lawrence

Assistant Director University Exploration
University Exploration
Academic Affairs
585-475-4289

Larry Buckley

Associate Dean Academic Affairs
Dean’s Office
College of Science
585-475-7507

Andre Hudson

School Head
Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences
College of Science
585-475-4259

MCAS Student Advocates

  • Develop programs that create community amongst AALANA students in their college.
  • Lead their college MCAS student boards (if applicable).
  • Meet regularly with their college MCAS Advocate (weekly/biweekly).
  • Be an extension of MCAS in their college in order to share information and promote opportunities from MCAS and DDI to students in their college.
  • Mentor and demonstrate academic success to students in their college.