January 19, 2022
Kansas State University recognizing two for diversity efforts
Kansas State University will honor the recipients of the Commerce Bank and W.T. Kemper Foundation Presidential awards for diversity excellence at a virtual reception from 3:30-5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 25.
Marianne Korten, professor of mathematics in the College of Arts and Sciences, will receive the Commerce Bank and W.T. Kemper Foundation Presidential Faculty and Staff Award for Distinguished Services to Historically Under-Represented Minority Students. Shumin Li, third-year veterinary medicine student, will receive the Commerce Bank and W.T. Kemper Foundation Presidential Student Award for Distinguished Services in Enhancing Multiculturalism.
The Presidential Faculty and Staff Award for Distinguished Services to Historically Under-Represented Minority Students award was established in 1978 to recognize outstanding individual contributions to the development of quality education for students of color at Kansas State University.
During her career at the university, Korten also has served as director of SuMAR Math REU since 2010, a program sponsored by the National Science Foundation supporting Research Experience for Undergraduates. Since 2013, she has served as director of the Center for the Integration of Undergraduate, Graduate, and Postdoctoral Research, the second-largest lab center of its kind and one of 13 labs across the U.S. Korten's commitment to students of underrepresented groups goes beyond her responsibilities as director of these programs.
According to her letter of nomination, "Korten supports students through their intersectionalities and makes no assumptions of them. She takes the time to develop rapport, learn about students' strengths and areas for growth to then provide support through a holistic approach. Dr. Korten goes above and beyond to get to know each student and support their personal, academic, and professional growth by meeting them where they are at and speaking their language. She continues to provide support once they leave K-State."
Korten has fostered partnerships with campus programs such as the McNair Scholars and Developing Scholars. She has served as treasurer of Alianza, the Association of Hispanic Faculty and Staff at K-State and on its Douglas Benson award committee.
The Presidential Student Award for Distinguished Services in Enhancing Multiculturalism at Kansas State University award was established in spring 1997 to recognize outstanding individual contributions to diversity enhancement within the student sector.
Li is the founder of Veterinarians for One Inclusive Community for Empowerment, or VOICE K-State, and served as president from 2019-2021. She also served as the student representative to the College of Veterinary Medicine's Multicultural Perspectives and Initiatives Committee and brought awareness to many important issues inspiring action from the committee. She partnered with K-State Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences, or MANRRS, to coordinate guest speakers for an Intercultural and Inclusion Lunch and Learn, including a nationally recognized expert, Lisa Greenhill, senior director for institutional research and diversity for the American Association of Veterinary Medical Colleges.
According to one of Li's recommendation letters, "K-State CVM is fortunate Shumin Li is part of the DVM program. By providing leadership, demonstrating inclusive actions and creating educational opportunities, Shumin has contributed toward the belonging of our entire campus community and her work is sincerely appreciated."