LGBTQ+ History in OSU’s The Barometer

April 4, 1991 Letter to the Editor in the OSU Daily Barometer

April 4, 1991 Letter to the Editor in the OSU Daily Barometer

Pride Month is a time to celebrate who we are and the people we love, but it is also a time to reflect on where we have been and where we want to go. Remembering our histories is one of the most important parts of building the future we imagine for ourselves and our loved ones. Here at the Oregon State University Queer Archives (OSQA), we have been working to document the histories of queerness at OSU, in Corvallis, and throughout all of Oregon in relation to the university. In the last few academic years, OSQA has grown into a wonderful resource for anyone looking to build their knowledge about queer history, and we invite you to come visit us.

Our most recent project involved scouring The Daily Barometer for anything related to queer history throughout the 1990s. The 1990s were a difficult time for queer folks in Oregon. The Oregon Citizens Alliance (OCA) fought to pass several homophobic, queerphobic, and transphobic ballot measures. They won some battles, especially in the rural parts of Oregon, but thanks to the efforts of dedicated community members, such as the people involved in the organization After 8, the OCA was unable to accomplish many of their hateful goals. However, even as Oregonians successfully repelled the OCA, homophobia and queerphobia raged on in our communities and on our campus. The letters section of The Daily Barometer became a well-worn battleground where proponents of equality faced off against their adversaries. For example, one letter writer went so far as to suggest that OSU needed to abandon Benny the Beaver because he was attracting attention from the Lesbian Avengers, an activist group working against hatred and discrimination. But there were others who were incredibly brave and wrote to the editor in defense and support of the LGBTQ+ community.

The Daily Barometer reported on these and a variety of topics, and in the spring of 2018, OSQA’s student worker reviewed the 1990s Barometer articles and selected the ones most relevant for the creation of the LGBTQ+ History in OSU’s The Barometer collection. Below are PDFs of the articles, organized by year, with a table of contents for each set of articles. If you desire to see a physical copy, the newspaper is available in printed and bound copies, as well as on microfilm.

LGBTQ+ History, 1990

LGBTQ+ History, 1991

LGBTQ+ History, 1992

LGBTQ+ History, 1993

LGBTQ+ History, 1994

LGBTQ+ History, 1995

LGBTQ+ History, 1996

LGBTQ+ History, 1997

LGBTQ+ History, 1998

LGBTQ+ History, 1999

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DPD Program 25th Anniversary Celebration


DPD-anniversaryThe OMA was honored to participate as part of the 25th Anniversary Celebration of the Difference, Power, and Discrimination (DPD) Program.

The DPD Program works with faculty across all fields and disciplines at Oregon State University to develop inclusive curricula that address institutionalized systems of power, privilege, and inequity in the United States. And the DPD archival collection is a part of the OMA! Difference, Power, and Discrimination Program Records, 1970-2011

At the anniversary event, the DPD was celebrated, awardees were honored, and acclaimed researcher/author Tricia Rose gave a riveting speech.

event-programThe awards included two teaching for change awards for Professors Quo-Li Driskill and Professor Steven Shay, as well as a legacy award for Annie Popking, the first DPD director, 1992-1994. In addition, all of the directors present at the celebration were honored.


The OMA’s role was to give remarks about the Coalition of Student Leaders, as well as give a brief history on OSU’s student activism and its significance. And, to give a legacy award to the Coalition of Student Leaders. Below are the remarks:

“The second 25th Anniversary Legacy Award goes to the Coalition of Concerned Student Leaders. I am so honored that Nana invited me here this evening to talk about the Coalition of Concerned Student Leaders, as well as the historical significance and impact of student activism here at Oregon State University.

The opening line to the 1990 Letter from Concerned Student Leaders: (A) Proposal to Confront Campus-Wide Discrimination was “As increased reports of discrimination and harassment begin to surface within our campus community, we a group of concerned student leaders, have assembled and developed a plan of action.” The proposal, which the students addressed directly to the university president, specifically called out the need to educate students and faculty on the value of culture and diversity. It is thanks to their voices that the Faculty Senate created the “Affirming Diversity Committee” so that today we celebrate the 25th year since the establishment of the Difference, Power, and Discrimination program.

The efforts of the Concerned Student Leaders were not the first, nor would they be the last time that OSU students used their collective voice to demand change. It is in large part due to the power of student activism that OSU continues making strides in its journey towards becoming a socially just institution and community.

Students, especially students of color, working with the support of allies, have a long history of recognizing their power and wielding it to shed light on invisible injustices and to create change benefitting the entire OSU community.

For example, in early 1969, the OSU Black Student Union called on the administration to increase the university’s efforts to support black student recruitment, retention, and success. Due to what the BSU deemed an insufficient administrative response, not only to their proposal but also to the way in which the rights of a black student athlete were violated, over the next few months, the BSU led boycotts, protests, and printed an underground newspaper to call attention to and gain support for their cause. The power of the BSU’s efforts led directly to the establishment of the Educational Opportunities Program that same year, as well as sparked the activism that led to the establishment of a number of cultural centers during the 1970s.

Since the 1970s, there have been a number of student led movements including, but by no means limited to, anti-apartheid protests in the early 1980s, a mass boycott and march in 1996 due to multiple racist acts, a mid-2000s initiative to give honorary degrees to the Japanese American students forced to leave their studies during World War II, a Solidarity March in 2014, as well as community dialogues inspired by the national Black Lives Matter movement.

More recently, almost 25 years to the date of the 1990 Concerned Student Leaders proposal, students organized and led the “Students of Color Speak Out” in 2015. At the “Speak Out” members of OSU’s students of color communities again called on the university to prioritize their safety and well-being, as well as the need for OSU community members to engage in identity and social justice trainings. Yet again, we see the demand and necessity of community education as part of the march towards social justice.

There are these and many more stories to share. As an archivist, I have the privilege to preserve and make these stories accessible to the public so that others can learn from them and be inspired by them. While on the one hand, it is discouraging to see that for almost 50 years students have had to protest the same issues, fight the same injustices, and call to action for the same causes, it also gives me hope. Each new generation of students challenges OSU, as an institution and as a community, to reflect and grow and be held accountable when it fails to live up to its professed mission and values. Each new generation of students find their voices, speak their truths, and make sacrifices now to cause ripple effects into the future positively impacting the next generation of students.

The Concerned of Student Leaders concluded their 1990 proposal with the statement, “We have taken valuable time away from our studies to address an issue that should have been addressed some time ago…this is a serious matter; literally lives depend upon it.” I believe that those students would be proud that we are gathered here today to celebrate such an incredible program that has enriched the lives of so many faculty, staff, and students. The students who wrote the 1990 proposal did not sign their names; instead, it was a united group that spoke on behalf of the many who perhaps felt voiceless and powerless. But while they are nameless, they are by no means forgotten. Their impact has been and will continue to be profound. This award will sit in the DPD office as a reminder of the role that students played in creating the program and the power of student activism. As we recognize these student leaders today, let their efforts serve as a reminder, inspiration, and celebration of the way in which our students challenge us to be better and do better as individuals and as an institution. Thank you to the Coalition of Concerned Student Leaders, as well as all of our amazing student activists – past, present, and future.”

~ Natalia Fernández

For more information about the history of student activism at OSU, be sure to check out the “Untold Stories” campus tour guidebook website

student-awardBelow is the 4 page proposal the Coalition of Concerned Student Leaders wrote:


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The OMA at NWA 2018


The OMA attended, and presented, at this year’s Northwest Archivists conference in Warm Springs, Oregon. The presentation “Campus Connections to White Supremacy: The Role of Archivists in Reconciliation through Community Engagement and Historical Research” focused on the Fall 2017 OSU Building and Place Names Evaluation Process.

Presentation Abstract: In recent years, more and more communities, including colleges and universities, across the United States are challenging the existence of memorials and place names associated with the confederacy and white supremacy. Archivists and special collections librarians are often called upon to provide historical context, and have the opportunity to engage their communities in productive and transformative discourses. In addition to an overview of campuses across the United States engaging their communities in efforts to reconcile current values of inclusion and diversity with their racist histories, as a case study, attendees will learn about the Building and Places Names Evaluation process at Oregon State University. Attendees will be able to adapt the information learned, including elements of the process such as developing evaluation criteria, providing historical research assistance, designing and implementing a community engagement plan, and planning for permanent education accessible to community members, to achieve successful collaborations within their own communities.

Link to the Presentation: “Campus Connections to White Supremacy: The Role of Archivists in Reconciliation through Community Engagement and Historical Research”

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Oregon Black Pioneers “Student Activism” Public Program


The event “Student Activists: The Civil Rights Histories of Oregon’s Universities and Colleges” was an opportunity for attendees to learn what was happening during the Civil Rights Movement on Oregon’s college campuses – including PSU, Lewis & Clark College, Pacific University, OSU, and the UO – and how student activism during the 1960s and 1970s helped shaped what higher education is for students today.

The event was presented by the Oregon Black Pioneers (OBP) in collaboration with the OSU Libraries and Press. The OBP is an all volunteer nonprofit organization based in Salem, Oregon. It was founded in the early 1990s to do research and educate Oregonians about African-Americans’ contributions to Oregon’s history. For the past several years the Oregon Black Pioneers has collaborated with the Oregon Historical Society in Portland to curate a number of exhibition’s showcasing Oregon’s African American histories. The most recent exhibit Racing to Change: Oregon’s Civil Rights Years illuminates the Civil Rights Movement in Oregon in the 1960s and 1970s. The exhibit is on view at the Oregon Historical Society until the end of June.

As part of the Racing to Change public programming series, the OBP has had a number of speakers talking about their first hand experiences, so for this event, the organization wanted to host an event that featured the individuals behind the scenes, the keepers of history – archivists – to talk about history. Each of the panelists respective universities hold archival records that document the student activism that occurred on their campuses during the 1960s and 1970s.

Event Information

Title: “Student Activists: The Civil Rights Histories of Oregon’s Universities and Colleges”
Date: Saturday, April 14, 2018
Panelists: Hannah Leah Crummé, Eva Guggemos, Cristine Paschild, and Natalia Fernández
Event Summary: The panelists at this event discussed student activists and the civil rights histories of Oregon’s universities and colleges. The four panelists featured in this discussion shared their archival expertise regarding the history of student activism and civil rights at their campus. The histories of colleges and universities presented included: University of Oregon (a brief history presented by the moderator), followed by Oregon State University, Lewis and Clark College, Pacific University, and Portland State University. After the panelists were finished with their presentations, the event progressed into a Q&A and open community dialogue format during which community members were also able to share their personal experiences.

Link to Event Recording of “Student Activists: The Civil Rights Histories of Oregon’s Universities and Colleges”

Panelist Information

  • Hannah Leah Crummé, worked at The National Archives of the UK before joining the Watzek Library at Lewis and Clark College in Portland as the head of special collections and college archives. She received her BA from Pomona College in Claremont, California and completed her doctoral research at King’s College, London.
  • Eva Guggemos has been the Archivist at Pacific University in Forest Grove since 2011. She previously worked at the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Yale University. She has an MLS from Simmons School of Library and Information Science, an MA in History from Yale University, and a BA from the University of Kansas.
  • Cristine Paschild has been the Head of Special Collections and the University Archivist at Portland State University Library since 2008. Before joining Portland State, she spent seven years with the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles as an archivist and the director of the collections management and access unit. Paschild holds an M.A. in English and an M.L.I.S. with an archives specialization, both from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
  • Natalia Fernández, is an associate professor and the Curator and Archivist of the Oregon Multicultural Archives (OMA) and the OSU Queer Archives (OSQA) here at the Oregon State University Special Collections and Archives Research Center. Fernandez is a board member on the Oregon Black Pioneers’ Board of Directors, and served on the Racing to Change exhibit advisory committee.

Featured Archival Content and Exhibit Materials



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Imagine OSU

imagine-osu-logoThe OMA and OSQA were thrilled to participate in Imagine OSU, an opportunity for the OSU community to engage in an event organized around creative workshop stations aimed at facilitating connection, reflection and the co-creation of a shared vision for our university.

Imagine OSU encouraged Oregon State students, faculty and staff to envision an Oregon State animated by inclusion, equity, diversity and social justice through reflection and creativity. The event was designed to encourage participants to translate aspirations and values – as a university community and as individuals – into action. Participants were encouraged to use audio and video, social media, comment boards, and creative arts to reflect on our past, present, and future. The comments, interviews, reflections and insights gathered during the event will be used as the source material for ongoing “Imagine OSU” projects – a living archive of prose, poetry, artwork, documentaries, collages, installations and more.

imagine-osu-flyerImagine OSU consisted of five stations. Workshop stations were hosted by partners including the OMA and OSQA, Orange Media Network, University Housing & Dining Services, and Diversity & Cultural Engagement.

Station One – A History of Resistance (that was us!)

Our station included documentaries and materials from the Untold Stores Guidebook that allowed participants to reflect on Oregon State’s social justice history and how the community has responded in times of challenge. Participants were encouraged to write their reflections on sticky notes and affix them to the comment board.

Questions for the participants to answer included:

  • What thoughts rise up for you reading this history?
  • What does resistance mean to you?
  • What does it mean to see fellow Beavers fight for justice?
  • What lessons can we learn from these stories of resistance?


The Other 4 Stations

Station Two – Audio/Video Stories ~ Participants selected a prompt that encouraged reflection on a variety of topics related to social justice at Oregon State and beyond and respond in video or audio formats. An Orange Media Network staff member was available to assist.

Station Three – Affirmations ~ Participants reflected on envisioning a university community of care where we are both the givers and receivers. Participants were encouraged to write affirmations that were be posted at the station as well as were encouraged to take an affirmation of their own.

Station Four – Reflection → Creation ~ Using provided materials, participants selected a prompt, reflect, react and create.

Station Five – Hop Online ~ Within the #ImagineOSU Twitter Moment on the Office of Institutional Diversity Twitter page, participants were encouraged to react to prompts to join in the conversation. Participants also picked their own prompt and contributed reflections and questions by using the hashtag #ImagineOSU on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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Feminist Forward: The Future of the Feminist Movement (Panel)


The “Feminist Forward: The Future of the Feminist Movement (League of Women Voters)” panel was a powerful evening of story sharing by four incredible women: Dr. Allison Davis-White Eyes, Dr. Susan Shaw, Maria Chavez-Haroldson, and Luhui Whitebear. Topics discussed included being a leader and leadership, being a feminist, ethics of care, feminism, strategies to interrupt and make change (personally, ideologies, structures, etc.), as well as where the Feminist Movement is going in 2018, and beyond.

Video Recording of the Feminist Forward: The Future of the Feminist Movement (League of Women Voters)”

Audio Recording of the Feminist Forward: The Future of the Feminist Movement (League of Women Voters)”


The presidential election of 2017 marked a new chapter in the Feminist Movement. The 2017 Women’s March was the largest protest in U.S. history. The League of Women Voters (LWV) is an organization founded in 1920, by Carrie Chapman Catt, just six months before the 19th amendment was ratified. This activist and grass roots organization believes that voters should play an important role in our democracy. The “Feminist Forward: The Future of the Feminist Movement (League of Women Voters)” discussion occurred the day before the 98th Anniversary of the League of Women Voters. The panelists addressed these questions: What does “intersectional feminism” mean to you? What are the most pressing questions facing the feminist movement in 2018? What does leadership mean to you? How do you incorporate feminism into your leadership style? What message would you like the audience to leave with today? Panelists also answered additional questions from the audience. The event was co-sponsored by the League of Women Voters and the Corvallis-Benton County Public Library.


  • Dr. Allison Davis-White Eyes, OSU Director of Community Diversity Relations in the Office of Institutional Diversity, previously the Assistant Vice Provost and Director, Diversity & Cultural Engagement. Her research interests include; intersectional theory, the queering of identity and space, and the mobility and migration of culture and identity.
  • Dr. Susan Shaw, OSU Professor of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and previously Director of the School of Language, Culture, and Society. Shaw’s work on Women’s Theology has been widely circulated in a majority of Huffington Post articles. Shaw is also a co-author of one of the most used Women Studies textbooks in the country, Women’s Voices, Feminist Visions: Classic and Contemporary Readings.
  • Maria Chavez-Haroldson, Owner of Culturally Responsive Solutions, a consulting business focusing on equitable, diverse, and inclusive organizational development practices. Chavez-Haroldson has over 25 years of professional experience as an administrator and leader of social justice change in state governments and non-profits.
  • Luhui Whitebear, Member of the Coastal Band of the Chumash Nation, OSU Ph.D. student, a mother, poet, and Indigenous activist. Her research focuses on a variety of Indigenous issues ranging from the violence against Indigenous women, reclaiming of Indigenous identity, as well as Indigenous movements of resistance and natural resource protection, such as her work with the Dakota Access Pipeline Resistance Movement.

Panel Information

  • Panelists: Dr. Allison Davis-White Eyes, Dr. Susan Shaw, Maria Chavez-Haroldson, and Luhui Whitebear.
  • Format: The panelists for this event were seated in front of their audience in a single line behind a table. The event started with a short introduction of the panelists and then progressed into a Q&A. After this brief Q&A the dialogue was opened up to community members to ask the panelists questions. Topics included being a leader and leadership, being a feminist, ethics of care, feminism, strategies to interrupt and make change (personally, ideologies, structures, etc.), as well as where the Feminist Movement is going in 2018, and beyond.
  • Moderator: J. Bouquet Harger
  • Date: February 13, 2018
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The Black Woman Series (Panel 2)


“The Black Woman Series” discusses how race intersects within our everyday lives. The first part of this series went over what it is to be a black woman as well as what that experience is like. The second part of this series focused on the concept of Colorism.

Video Recording of The Black Woman Series (Panel 2)


The seven panelists featured in this discussion shared their personal experiences with colorism throughout their lives. The event also featured a brief video, “Why Women Change the Color of Their Skin.” This video discusses issues of colorism through looking at the controversy over Lil Kim the rappers’ undergoing facial reconstructive surgery and skin lightening to look whiter. Due to current beauty ideals, there is pressure for women of color to conform and change the way they look in order to meet these standards. These beauty standards include having light skin, blond hair, blue eyes, and being slender. Patience Zalanga, a photographer, stated that Lil Kim’s transformation is an extreme but it is not a phenomenon as, “black women and women of color are always aspiring to get as close to white as possible, and fit those beauty standards.” There is a multi-million dollar skin bleaching industry within the United States. According to the W.H.O. (World Health Organization) in 2011, 77% of women in Nigeria used skin-lightening products regularly, as did 40 % of women in China, Malaysia, the Philippines, and South Korea. These statistics show the prevalence of colorism not just in the United States, but globally as well. Further suggested educational learning on this topic: The 1941 novel by Tony Morrison, The Bluest Eye.

Colorism: Prejudice or discrimination against individuals with darker skin tone/complexion, typically among people within the same ethnic group. Colorism is not just an issue in the United States or isolated to African American communities, it occurs globally as well. Colorism has a lot to do with a proximity to whiteness, how close someone is or appears to be to whiteness. This in turn instills a light skin privilege. Historically, this divide within the African American community manifested itself in times of slavery through allowing lighter skinned slaves to work inside the home, while darker skinned slaves had to work outside. Another concept relating to Colorism is the idea of Passing. When an individual “racially passes,” they are able to appear white, allowing them access to privilege compared to their counterparts. Until the 20th century, the “brown paper bag rule” persisted in African American communities. The “brown paper bag rule,” determined who would have access to privilege and inclusion in various organizations, universities, and events. In turn, this rule denied entry to individuals whose skin stone was darker than a brown paper bag.


  • Marilyn Stewart, an Alumni of Oregon State University, works as an Academic Advisor for the College of Liberal Arts at Oregon State University. The core of her approach as an academic advisor is assisting students to make informed decisions in becoming even more academically successful as they move toward their goal of earning a College of Liberal Arts degree. Marilyn came to Oregon from Washington D.C. however she originally is from Northern Florida.
  • Dr. Tenisha Tevis, is an Assistant professor in College of Education with an emphasis in Adult and Higher education at Oregon State University. Tenisha’s research focuses on the policies and practices higher education administrators utilize to help disenfranchised students gain access to and persist through college. Specifically, she explores disability services and the polarizing effects of race. Tenisha grew up in Sacramento, California but came to Oregon from Stockton, California.
  • Dr. Ramycia McGhee, is a Chicago native and holds a B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from UW-Whitewater, Journalism from Roosevelt University, and an Ed.D in Education Leadership Management from Capella University. Before beginning her career at Linn Benton in fall 2017, she worked as an adjunct English instructor for City Colleges of Chicago. Her specialties include developmental writing and adjunct professional development.
  • Elizabeth Kaweesa, is a third year PhD student in the Chemistry department at Oregon State University. Her research focuses on drug discovery as well as cancer research. Elizabeth also serves as the president of the Black Graduate Student Association. Elizabeth is from a fishing village near Lake Victoria in Uganda.
    Kayla Spears, is the Student Leadership Liaison at the Lonnie B. Harris Black Cultural Center. Kayla is a fourth year Political Science major and the vice president of the NAACP chapter at Oregon State University.
  • Justeen Quartey is a fourth year Public Health major and the president of the Black Student Union at Oregon State University. Justine was born and raised in Sacramento, California.
  • Sarah Smith, an Alumni of Oregon State University, is a University Development Project Coordinator 1 for the Carlson College of Veterinarian Medicine at Oregon State University. Sarah is from Beaverton, Oregon.

Panel Information

  • Panelists: Marilyn Stewart, Tenisha Tevis, Ramycia McGhee, Elizabeth Kaweesa, Kayla Spears, Justine, and Sarah Smith.
  • Format: The panelists for this event were seated in front of their audience in a single line. The event started with a short video and then progressed into a Q&A and open community dialogue format with the panelists.
  • Moderators: Terrance Harris, Marisa Chappell, and Micknai Arefaine
  • Date: February 7, 2018
  • Location: Lonnie B. Harris Black Cultural Center
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Oregon Black Pioneers: “Racing to Change: Oregon’s Civil Rights Years” Exhibit Reception

obp-reception-003This evening, the OMA was delighted to attend the reception for the Oregon Black Pioneers’ new exhibit “Racing to Change: Oregon’s Civil Rights Years” at the Oregon Historical Society. Check out the pics below!

About the Oregon Black Pioneers

“Our vision is to be the premier resource for Oregon’s African American culture and heritage information. We aspire to preserve this largely unknown and rich heritage and culture through collections and programs that promote scholarly research and public use. We envision becoming a center for study of Oregon’s African American life, heritage and culture.” OBP Website

About the Exhibit and Public Programming  

Racing to Change: Oregon’s Civil Rights Years is a groundbreaking exhibit with associated public programs about the courage, struggle, and progress of Oregon’s black residents during the civil rights movement in Oregon in the 1960’s and 1970’s. The exhibit will be hosted by the Oregon Historical Society January 15-June 24, 2018.

The interactive exhibit will engage visitors of all ages and backgrounds as it traces how housing and employment discrimination practices affected Oregon’s black populations and spurred the civil rights movement in Oregon. Through personal photos and artifacts, text, and interactive experiences, the exhibit will illuminate Oregon’s vibrant black community during the civil rights era, amongst a larger cultural and legal context of discrimination and displacement.


Photos of the Exhibit Reception

Over 300 people attended…

obp-reception-001Including Governor Kate Brown; she is pictured below with Oregon Black Pioneer leaders Gwen Carr, Willie Richardson, and Kim Moreland

obp-reception-002Prior to the reception’s start, OBP President Willie Richardson spoke with OBP Board Members

obp-reception-004Photos of the Exhibit 


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Stories of Being First – OSU Faculty, Staff, and Admin Oral Histories


First Generation OSU Faculty, Staff, and Administrators

During this academic year, the OMA is collaborating on a special project with two other OSU Library departments to showcase existing oral histories as well as gather more stories of OSU’s first generation students, faculty, staff, and administrators.

About First Generation Students

“I think we bring about a unique perspective, and this goes back to what I was saying in terms of the challenge, right, if our challenge is how do we balance all these competing expectations, between family, between school, between your own work, and your own goals — I think that first generation students bring a very different perspective of life, of experience. I also think that they bring a sense of value for education that other people might take for granted…I think because of our struggle, because we had to really figure things out differently, we bring an appreciation, we bring an appreciation for the sense of sacrifice that it actually takes to be here and to make it through to graduation.” ~ Susana  Rivera-Mills

“…when I think about first generation students and them having to find a way when a way appears not to be possible, that requires sort of this creative approach to the world of being able to figure, find a door, when it seems to be this sort of blank space. And so, when first generation students are in situations with others, they can help them to see possibilities that might not otherwise be there…I think with first generation students one of the things that they can bring to an institution that wouldn’t be there otherwise is hope. Because it takes a huge leap to believe that something that you’ve not seen is possible, you know, sort of this faith in the unseen. And so, oftentimes first generation students will come from an environment where, at least when I think about my own, where at least my life was a life of sort of social isolation, where you feel like sort of your community isn’t cared for or who you are isn’t valued, but you believe that you do have value, you do believe that a better world for yourself and others is possible. And I think that there is something incredible and something really powerful about having that element be present in an institution.” ~ Larry Roper

First Generation Stories in the Archives

In May 2016, the OMA recorded and made accessible a panel presentation “Celebrating FIRST! Students Sharing their Stories” featuring six OSU students who identify as first generation college students.

In 2015 and 2016, the OSU U-Engage course “What am I Doing Here?! Being First in the Family at College” included an assignment for students to interview first generation OSU faculty, staff, and administrators, which they then dontated to the archives to include as part of the Voices of Oregon State University Oral History Collection. Although the interviews are not available online, they are accessible if you come to the SCARC reading room, and below is information about the interviewees.

Interviewees Featured as Part of the Project

Natchee Barnd (00:39:37) is an Ethnic Studies assistant professor at Oregon State University. He is a comparative and critical ethnic studies scholar, interested in the intersections between ethnic studies, cultural geography, and indigenous studies. His research focuses on issues of race, space, and indigenous geographies.

Angela Batista (00:35:03) joined Oregon State University as the Associate Vice Provost for Student Affairs and Dean of Student Life in June 2015 and was named as Interim Chief Diversity Officer in February of 2016. Prior to joining Oregon State, she served as Dean of Students at the University of Southern Indiana. In the autumn of 2017, she was named special adviser to the president for diversity and inclusion at Champlain College.

Ed Ray (00:49:48) became the 14th president of Oregon State University on July 31, 2003. During his 15 years as president, Oregon State has become an internationally recognized public research university and has continued to expand the excellence, scope and impact of its academic, research and outreach services.

Susana Rivera-Mills (00:22:30) serves as the Vice Provost and Dean of Undergraduate Studies. She previously served as Executive Associate Dean in the College of Liberal Arts and Professor of Spanish Linguistics and Diversity Advancement. She arrived at OSU fall of 2007 and, since then, has been involved in developing mentoring and leadership programs for faculty and students, community partnerships, student engagement and success strategies, advancing diversity at OSU and in higher education, internationalization, engaged research, and promoting equity and inclusion.

Larry Roper (00:23:26) is a Professor within the Sociology Program in the School of Language, Culture and Society and is the Coordinator of the College Student Services Administration program as well as the undergraduate Social Justice Minor at Oregon State University. Previously, he served as Vice Provost for Student Affairs from 1995-2014.

Allison Hurst (00:54:17) is an associate professor in the School of Public Policy at OSU. Her research interests focus on issues around class inequality, higher education and social mobility, school to work transitions of college graduates, social welfare policy, and higher education policy.

Daniel Newhart (00:34:56) is Oregon State University’s Assistant Vice Provost, Student Affairs and Director, Student Affairs Research, Evaluation and Planning. One of his research interests is to better understand higher education, be it evaluation, assessment or research, as well as the larger political contexts of these spaces of inquiry. He is also interested in novel approaches to the measurement of student learning inside and outside of the classroom in the university context.

Dwaine Plaza (00:23:44) is the Associate Dean of the College of Liberal Arts at Oregon State University. He is also a professor and coordinator of the Sociology Program for the School of Public Policy. His research interests focus on Caribbean studies, migration and settlement, as well as race and ethnic relations.

Marilyn Stewart (00:19:47) works as an Academic Advisor for the College of Liberal Arts at Oregon State University. Having liberal arts experience at OSU, she seeks to make a difference in students’ lives through considerate guidance and support. The core of her approach as an academic advisor is assisting students to make informed decisions in becoming even more academically successful as they move toward their goal of earning a College of Liberal Arts degree.

Willie Elfering (00:16:21) is a Military Veteran Resources Advisor within the Office of Student Life. Through his position, he provides support to military service members, veterans, and their families studying at Oregon State University.

Rican Vue (00:38:27) is an assistant professor for the School of Public Policy. Her research interests focus on diversity and equity in higher education, success of underrepresented students, Asian American students, as well as race and ethnic relations.

We are excited to gather and make accessible more stories!

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I Love My Librarian 2017


Today, on November 30, 2017, 10 librarians were honored with the 2017 I Love My Librarian Award for their outstanding public service contributions, and the OMA and OSQA curator and archivist Natalia Fernández was one of them!

Selected from more than 1,100 nominations submitted by library users nationwide, including educators and members of the public, the winning librarians were recognized for their leadership in transforming lives and communities through education and lifelong learning.

The 2017 award winners include amazing librarians such as a public librarian who helps economically disadvantaged families connect with social services; a school librarian who inspires a love of reading in students who are new to the country or speak English as a second language; and a public librarian who helps underserved teens explore their passions and prepare for college.

More information is available on the I Love My Librarian website, 2017 Winners

“This year’s I Love My Librarian Award recipients are true leaders who are inspiring and implementing strategies to better their communities,” said Jim Neal, president of the American Library Association. “Whether it’s fostering inclusion and diversity or mentoring youth, these librarians are expanding beyond their traditional roles and providing more opportunities to meet the changing needs of the patrons they serve.”

The ceremony is hosted by the philanthropic foundation Carnegie Corporation of New York, which co-sponsors the award along with The New York Public Library and The New York Times. The American Library Association administers the award through its Public Awareness Office, which promotes the value of libraries and librarians.


Natalia Fernández, Associate Professor, Curator and Archivist of the Oregon Multicultural Archives and OSU Queer Archives

“It is such a joy to collaborate with Oregon State University’s and the state of Oregon’s LGBTQIA and communities of color to create opportunities that empower them to preserve and celebrate their stories. I am so grateful to work with such wonderful community members who are so open to sharing their histories, as well as to work in an environment that supports the initiatives I direct.

I am very honored and humbled that my incredible colleagues and community partners nominated me for this award. If there were an award titled “I Love My Community”, they would definitely win it.

Librarians and archivists are in a unique position to positively impact the communities we serve as we create a more socially just and inclusive society, and I am so proud to be a part of this profession.”

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