Bosco holds Q&A to discuss new diversity VP, multicultural student center

Pat Bosco, vice president for student life Kansas State University, answers questions during a Q&A session at the sutdent union in Manhattan, Kan. on Nov. 15, 2017. (Photo by Hailey McClellan | Collegian Media Group)

Pat Bosco, vice president for student life and dean of students, gave students the opportunity to ask questions about recent events and multicultural student affairs Wednesday night.

Only seven students came to the Q&A: six seniors and one freshman. As such, the attendees formed a circle for a more informal conversation.

Bosco began the meeting by opening up the floor to questions and expectations for Adrian Rodriguez, who was announced as the associate vice president for diversity and multicultural student affairs in a news release earlier this week. Rodriguez will begin working for Kansas State on Dec. 4.

The first question inquired about the selection process for the new position.

Bosco said a search committee of students and faculty sorted through approximately 30 applications before narrowing down the number of candidates. He then passed the question off to Paloma Roman, president of the Hispanic American Leadership Organization at K-State and senior in athletic training, who was part of the search committee.

Before looking at applications, the committee members were trained in diversity and how to review resumes without bias. The committee also came up with the questions used in the interviews for the position, Roman said.

Interviews were conducted over the course of two days. K-State students were able to watch the interviews in person or via livestream. After the interviews, the committee narrowed their search to four applicants who would meet with Bosco on a campus visit before the final decision.

“Everyone was dedicated to putting a lot of time into it,” Roman said.

In the end, the committee selected Rodriquez, who Bosco said is “likely to go out and talk with the students” rather than wait for students to come to him.

“His first order of business will be to visit with students, then quickly catch up on the good things we are doing and identify where we need to get better,” Bosco said.

The discussion also touched on plans for a multicultural student center.

Jonathan Cole, senior in mechanical engineering, said he feels there should be “some tangible result of the 25 years of effort” that has been put into the project so far.

Bosco said the project lost momentum due to multiple changes in staff positions, and the next step now that university president Richard Myers has made it a priority is to create a program document detailing the building and its purposes to present to the community. These steps are critical in getting people to donate to the project, Bosco said.

“I hope to have some kind of program document by the next semester,” Bosco said.