The History of THREADS
THREADS was conceived by the Multicultural Center in the spring of 2003. To make the initiative as inclusive as possible, the Center invited students, faculty, and staff from the University community to serve on the committee. The first committee meeting occurred May 29, 2003. From this meeting the Awareness Months were chosen and the brainstorming process for a name was started. After much thought, the committee decided to go with program advisor for Greek Life and Leadership Sandi Ziganti's suggestion of Teaching Human Respect & Encouraging Action Diversity Series, or THREADS.
With the initiative named and the Awareness Months chosen, the committee then contacted campus departments, student organizations, and local community organizations to find groups interested in contributing programs, events, and activities to the calendar. From these contacts, the committee started piecing together the calendars for National Hispanic Heritage Month, CommUNITY Month, and Religious Awareness Month.
Upon gathering events from a variety of campus departments and student organizations for the monthly calendars, the committee then started marketing THREADS to the University Community. Members of the committee presented a PowerPoint presentation to a variety of departments and organizations, created posters to hang around campus, and created a website.
In addition, the committee decided that a logo designed specifically for THREADS was needed to make THREADS easily recognizable to all members of the USI community. The committee then started organizing a logo contest for students, alumni and employees of the University. The contest was announced to the University community in September of 2003. In January 2004, Sunny Oelling's winning design was presented to the USI Community.
To celebrate the success of THREADS in its first year, the THREADS Committee hosted an End of the Year Reception on April 21, 2004, on the UC Mall. The USI community enjoyed pizza while attending an appreciation ceremony which included presentation of certificates of appreciation, recitation of An Ally's Promise, and music by USI students. The USI community was also able to reflect on the past year during a slideshow of the year's past diversity events.
Now in its eighth year, the THREADS committee continues to meet to determine the Awareness Months for each academic school year, to coordinate monthly calendars, and to disseminate information on new diversity resources.