IONA College Logo | Go to Home Page

students working together

Student Leader Alliance for Multiculturalism (SLAM)

tribalfusion pixelIona College noted as a College of Distinction for 2017-18

Mission Statement

The formation of the Student Leader Alliance for Multiculturalism (SLAM) transformed from the former Council for Multicultural Leaders with the intention of broadening the mission while preserving the core purpose. As an umbrella governing organization, SLAM will allow development and growth, as well as provide a sense of unification for the multicultural and diverse organizations on the Iona College campus. The formation of SLAM fosters the Iona community to speak upon current multicultural and diversity affairs affecting the college community and elevate concerns that students may have. The organization will cultivate as a haven for students which include but are not confined to age, lifestyle, national or ethnic origin, race, creed, color, sex, marital status, veteran status, sexual orientation, affectional preference, gender identity, citizenship status, disability or socio-economic background. SLAM will serve as a bridge-building system as well as function as an umbrella organization for multicultural and diverse organizations to come together in sight of support and structure.

Meetings

SLAM meets bi-weekly on Mondays at 5 p.m. in Conference Room 1, Robert V. LaPenta Student Union. All are always welcome!
 

Contact

SLAM Office Phone: (914) 622-4988
Follow us on Instagram: @IC_SLAM
Advisor: Rafael Matos, Assistant Director for Student Development
 
Office Location: LaPenta Student Union, Club Offices (ground floor)
 

Past SLAM Programming:

  • October 2015: “My Culture is not a Costume” highlighted some of the stereotypes individuals don’t realize they portray by dressing up for Halloween in costumes which are offensive and a misrepresentation to some cultures.
  • February 2016: “#BlackLivesMatter” was a student-led debate on the importance of this movement and how it impacts diverse students on campuses nationwide.
  • March 2016: Co-Sponsored a Women’s Empowerment Event that empowered self-identified women to break the mold by sharing experiences that have hindered them and then following up with words which lift them up.
  • May 2016: “Iona International World Tour” participated in the event to highlight countries and their cultures from around the world.
  • May 2016: “BeyoncĂ© Lemonade Stand” featured free lemonade to all who passed by our table while dissecting the impactful lyrics of BeyoncĂ©’s album Lemonade.
If you wish SLAM, to co-sponsor a program or event, please contact James Shoptaugh, vice chair for External Affairs, at jshoptaugh1@gaels.iona.edu, or Yaraliz Santiago, vice chair for Internal Affairs, at ysantiago1@gaels.iona.edu.

Executive Board

Tamara Abi-Mourshed, Chair for Multiculturalism
Tamara Abi-Mourshed is a junior studying Dual Childhood Education with a concentration in English. She will be serving as chair for the Student Leader Alliance for Multiculturalism for the 2017-18 school year. Tamara was a commuter her first year and then decided to reside on campus after feeling more at home within Iona. She was a member of Gael Pride and the Education Club and became Vice Chair of Internal Affairs for SLAM during Spring Semester of 2017 after expressing her interest and passion towards advocacy and inclusion. After finding her home on campus, Tamara has sought to ensure there is a place for everyone at Iona. She is so excited for the positivity and energy the SLAM Team has committed to spread throughout campus. Tamara is enthusiastic for this school year and all that SLAM has planned and collaborated with others to enhance the diverse and welcoming community at Iona College!
Contact Tamara at: tabimourshed1@gaels.iona.edu
 
Jasmine Solano, Executive Vice Chair for Multiculturalism
Jasmine Solano is a part of the Class of 2019 here at Iona College. She is a Speech-Pathology major. She is very excited to begin the 2017-18 school year. She is from Manhattan, N.Y. As a native New Yorker, she finds that diversity is an essential part of her life. She believes that diversity is what makes the world go round. She also believes that diversity provides a lesson for each of us to be comfortable and open to things that divide groups of people such as race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, physical and mental ability, language and accepting people for who they truly are. Jasmine would like to foster these discussions as part of her role in SLAM. She looks forward to an amazing year and can’t wait to get started.
Contact Jasmine at: jsolano1@gaels.iona.edu
 
Philecia Atkins-Gilmore, Vice Chair for Administration
The 2017-18 school year will be Philecia Atkins-Gilmore’s senior year. She is majoring in Mass Communication with a concentration in Broadcast Media and is looking to get into Political Science and Criminal Justice. Philecia comes to New York from Memphis, Tenn., and the difference in diversity that she experience was alarming. Thus she was excited to join SLAM. She will be serving on the E-board for the Student Leader Alliance for Multiculturalism for the first time this year and is looking to make a difference starting from within SLAM. She has been involved with Iona College as a part of the Edmund Rice Society, Gael Pride and the Black Student Union. Philecia aspires to be a Prison Rights, Black Lives Matter, Life After Prison and All Lives Matter activist, a Spoken Word Artist, Future Philanthropist and a Non Profit Entrepreneur.  Philecia believes in real equality and knows providing the opportunity for change will create positive outcomes for youth and a second chance or even a first, to those who need it. She aspires to develop schools and homes, and to provide that opportunity for change some day.
Contact Philecia at: patkins1@gaels.iona.edu
 
Yaraliz Santiago, Vice Chair for Internal Affairs
Yaraliz Santiago is a senior studying Criminal Justice and will be the Vice Chair for Internal Affairs. This is Yaraliz’s second year being involved with the Student Leader Alliance for Multiculturalism, and she is excited to participate again this upcoming academic year. In addition to being on the SLAM E-board, Yaraliz is a resident assistant in North Hall, a student representative for the Alcohol and other Drug Education Committee, and is part of the American Criminal Justice Association Chi Rho Chapter. Yaraliz is excited to positively impact campus and create an inclusive environment. She would like to lead discussions on diversity and acceptance as society is forever evolving so that anyone who enters the Iona College campus can feel welcomed, heard and free to be who they are.
Contact Yaraliz at: ysantiago1@gaels.iona.edu

James Shoptaugh, Vice Chair for External Affairs
James Shoptaugh is a sophomore who has yet to declare a major. James’ preferred pronouns are They/He. They are from Oakland, Calif. (close to San Francisco) and hope to bring the activism and acceptance they have experienced in their hometown to Iona. James’ goal is to encourage students to engage in meaningful dialogue, examine injustices, and take action. They want to ensure that marginalized groups feel welcome and safe at Iona and will strive for a campus environment where marginalized groups feel accepted, not just tolerated. They are an active member of Gael Pride, PACT, Pipe Band and IC Green. James looks forward to being on the SLAM E-Board this year and is exited to create change!
Contact James at: jshoptaugh1@gaels.iona.edu