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K-State Today

March 27, 2014



Community invited to attend multicultural alumni lecture April 15

By Jessica Elmore

Higher education fundraising and research experts Marybeth Gasman and Nelson Bowman, co-authors of "Engaging Diverse College Alumni," will present a lecture of the same title at 10 a.m. April 15 in Forum Hall at the K-State Student Union.

The lecture is co-sponsored by the K-State Alumni Association's Multicultural Alumni Council, the Kansas State University Foundation, diversity office and president's office.

"As K-State continues to grow its diverse student and alumni populations, it's important that the university develop strategies on how to engage our diverse alumni," said Jessica Elmore, assistant director of multicultural programs for the K-State Alumni Association. "This lecture will provide information about how we can connect with our multicultural alumni and make sure everyone feels they're a part of the K-State family."

According to Gasman and Bowman's research, by 2050, there will be more people of color — 54.8 percent — than whites — 45.2 percent — in the U.S. College campuses are already seeing major changes in terms of the demographic makeup of its students and alumni. Gasman and Bowman believe few colleges and universities are prepared to engage these groups.

Using their book as a platform, Gasman and Bowman's lecture will provide a comprehensive overview of philanthropy in diverse cultures and will offer concrete suggestions for engaging these populations, including rethinking of standard practices — such as shifting fundraising staff away from a "one size fits all" approach within communities of color — and challenging common assumptions about racial and ethnic minorities.

Gasman is a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and is the vice president of the American Education Research Association. Her area of expertise includes the history of American higher education, historically black colleges and universities, minority-serving institutions, African-American leadership, and fundraising and philanthropy. She has written or edited 15 books and also serves as a regular contributor to the Chronicles of Higher Education, Diverse Issues, The New York Times and The Washington Post.

Bowman is the executive director of development at Prairie View A&M University and gives lectures on fundraising at colleges and universities. He also has co-written several books that focus on multicultural fundraising strategies.

Event details are available online or by calling the K-State Alumni Association at 800-600-ALUM (2586).