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Office of Multicultural Affairs honors students for academic excellence

October 17, 2011

Jill Ouikahilo
(315) 443-8568

The Office of Multicultural Affairs’ WellsLink Leadership Program, an award-winning curriculum designed for first-year students, will present its eighth annual WellsLink Transitions Ceremony on Friday, Oct. 21, at 4 p.m. in Hendricks Chapel. This formal ceremony honors WellsLink scholars from the previous year who have successfully transitioned to their second year at Syracuse University. Campus members are invited to attend.

“The transitions ceremony celebrates the achievement of scholars in successfully navigating the first year of their college experience and matriculating as sophomores,” says James K. Duah-Agyeman, director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs. “This successful beginning advances them toward the completion of their degrees in each respective area of study. Please join us in congratulating these brilliant and hard-working students for this milestone. They need our support and encouragement as they continue on their journey to fulfill their dreams of earning a college degree at Syracuse University.”

tetersThe keynote address will be given by Charlene Teters (Spokane), professor of art at the Institute of American Indian Art in Santa Fe, N.M. Teters is known for her activism and art, and is considered the Rosa Parks of the American Indian civil rights movement. She is a founding board member of the National Coalition on Racism in Sports and the Media. Her activist career began with a vigorous dispute over the use of stereotypical images of American Indian sports mascots. She picketed sports events and launched a national debate about the appropriateness of this practice by sports and media. The history of her work is the subject of a nationally aired award-winning documentary, “In Whose Honor?” by Jay Rosenstein.

A winner of the NASPA Excellence Award, the WellsLink Leadership Program is an academic excellence and leadership program for first-year students not already sponsored by athletics or state and federally funded programs. Through a yearlong series of structured academic, social and cultural enrichment activities, WellsLink scholars are poised for success and leadership at SU. The goal of the program is to give students an edge in college, offering them the tools necessary to achieve their academic goals, develop professionalism and expand their awareness of valuable resources and opportunities.

The WellsLink Leadership Program is named after Barry L. Wells, founder of SU’s Office of Minority Affairs in 1976, and former SU senior vice president and dean of student affairs. The theoretical foundations, structural rationale and institutional support of the program were developed under the leadership of Duah-Agyeman and Paul M. Buckley.

Campus members are welcome to attend the ceremony. Please RSVP to Marissa Willingham at, or call 443-9676 by Wednesday, Oct. 19.

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