OUR Rochester


We're very excited to share with you OUR Rochester, featuring multicultural news and updates from the University of Rochester, in a more dynamic and engaging format. This brings you the same great content you've come to expect from the e-newsletter edition, but with multimedia capability, social media sharing functionality, and 24/7 access. We look forward to continuing to support the University's commitment to diversity and inclusion, and are thrilled to have a new forum to help keep you connected with your fellow alumni. Meliora!

Comments? Questions? Contact us at 585.273.5888 or alumni@rochester.edu.

The Staggering Cost of Being Black in America

Aug 13, 2018

Armed with the tools of modern finance, engineer and businessman Shawn Rochester ’97 offers an accounting. Interview by Karen McCally ’02 (PhD) The premise isn’t new: engineer and business executive Shawn Rochester ’97, in a recent book, The Black Tax: The Cost of Being Black in America (Good Steward Publishing), shows myriad ways in which…  read more 

University hosting national College Horizons program June 22, 2018

Jul 16, 2018

About 70 Native American high school students will be working with national admissions representatives and counselors on the River Campus this week as part of College Horizons, a college access and success program hosted by the Office of Admissions. Students from South Dakota, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Minnesota, Washington and other states will work…  read more 

Alumna Featured on NPR’s Radio Diaries

Jun 18, 2018

Olivia Hooker '62 (PhD) was recently featured on NPR's Radio Diaries. Now 103 years old (and one of our oldest living alumni!), Dr. Hooker became the first African-American woman to join the U.S. Coast Guard in 1945. She went on to earn a doctorate degree in psychology and helped form the Tulsa Race Riot Commission in 1997 to investigate the…  read more 

Rochester’s first Posse Foundation cohort set to graduate

May 21, 2018

Four years after arriving on campus, the “posse” is ready to ride off as graduates of the University of Rochester. Nine students who came to Rochester from Washington, D.C., in 2014 as members of the University’s first Posse Foundation cohort celebrated their impending graduation with a ceremony at Rush Rhees Library on May 12. Richard…  read more 

An improbable route to Rochester, then Harvard

May 15, 2018

Making their mark: This is one in a series of profiles celebrating members of Rochester’s graduating class of 2018. Growing up in Los Angeles, Matthew Lyskawa ’18 saw no purpose in school. “I hated it,” he says. Bored and frustrated, he was dismissed from two high schools for disciplinary reasons, finally graduating with a 1.8 grade-point…  read more 

Two pairs of University students to receive Davis Projects for Peace grants

May 7, 2018

For the first time, two pairs of University of Rochester students have been selected to receive $10,000 grants from Davis Projects for Peace, a highly competitive national program that promotes peace and intercultural understanding. Bienfait Mugenza ’21 and Philemon Rono ’21 will run “Peace through Entrepreneurship,” a one-week workshop to…  read more 

Descendant of Frederick Douglass and Booker T. Washington hopes to create ‘one million abolitionists’

Apr 12, 2018

Kenneth B. Morris Jr., co-founder and president of Frederick Douglass Family Initiatives (FDFI), spoke to a University gathering Thursday about his goal of creating one million abolitionists to help end human trafficking, a modern form of slavery. Morris is a great-great-great-grandson of the 19th-century abolitionist Frederick Douglass as well as…  read more 

CNN’s Ana Navarro to speak at University’s Diversity Conference

Apr 12, 2018

CNN political analyst Ana Navarro will be the keynote speaker for the University’s annual Diversity Conference this Friday, April 13. The keynote address begins at 8:30 a.m. at Strong Auditorium and is free and open to the public. You can also watch the keynote address live online. Parking is available in the Larry and Cindy Bloch Alumni and…  read more 

Kevin Beckford is a man on a mission to increase staff diversity

Apr 3, 2018

Kevin Beckford is the University of Rochester’s first senior director of staff diversity, equity, and inclusion, a newly created position. Born in Jamaica, Beckford lived in Nassau, Bahamas, before immigrating to the United States at age 18. Prior to joining the University, the Pittsford resident (newly elected to the town board) worked for…  read more 

Eastman School of Music Celebrates the 95th Birthday Year of Composer and Pianist George Walker

Mar 30, 2018

Eastman School of Music is proud to celebrate the 95th birthday year of composer and pianist George Theophilus Walker '56E (DMA) in a special alumnus recital on Monday, April 2 at 7:30 p.m. in Hatch Recital Hall at Eastman, followed by a champagne toast and reception in Wolk Atrium for the audience. The recital, comprised of the complete…  read more 

John Barker named to new leadership position in Arts, Sciences & Engineering

Mar 20, 2018

John Barker ‘09W (PhD) says his goals for higher education have always included three tenets: “access, equity, and social justice for all.” As of March 1, he is fulfilling those missions at Rochester in the newly created role as senior associate dean of the faculty for Arts, Sciences & Engineering. Barker, who most recently was dean of…  read more 

Thinking about ‘visual privilege’ and the 2018 Oscars

Mar 8, 2018

When the Academy Awards offered a second straight year of all-white nominees in 2016, Twitter users seized the #OscarsSoWhite hashtag to highlight the narrowness of the honors being distributed. It was a move that contributed to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ recent efforts to overhaul its voting membership. Sharon Willis, a…  read more 

‘Inclusive habits of the mind and heart’: Diversity, justice, and higher education

Feb 26, 2018

Sasha Eloi-Evans ’05, ’17W (EdD) is an academic programming coordinator for the Office of Minority Students Affairs and a lecturer in the Department of Linguistics. She’s also a student advisor for the Douglass Leadership House, Minority Students Advisory Board, and Women’s Leadership Alliance, and the coordinator of the Women of…  read more 

Black History Month 2018

Feb 5, 2018

Sponsors and host organizations across the University are planning events to celebrate black history. This year also marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Frederick Douglass. The Frederick Douglass Institute for African and African American Studies and Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation are joining with other Rochester…  read more 

Patria Frias-Colon '90 sworn in as Brooklyn’s first elected Dominican judge

Jan 24, 2018

Brooklyn’s judiciary has seen a lot of firsts recently—the first Iranian-born and the first Hasidic judges were sworn in last year. The first Russian-born and Cuban-born judges were already sworn in earlier this year. On Thursday night there was another first—the first ever Dominican-born judge, Patria Frias-Colon, was officially inducted as…  read more 

"Overcoming the Invisible" will be the theme for the 2018 Annual Diversity Conference, April 13

Jan 16, 2018

Ana Navarro, Republican strategist and political analyst for CNN and CNN En Español, as well as a political contributor on ABC’s The View, will be the keynote speaker at the 2018 Annual Diversity Conference on Friday, April 13. The Miami New Times describes Navarro as a "Republican power-consultant," and the Tampa Bay Times calls her "a…  read more 

University welcoming students from Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands

Jan 5, 2018

More than a month after Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma made landfall in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, many residents still do not have power or access to clean water. Universities and colleges in these areas have had to temporarily shut down, forcing many students to suspend their degree programs. In response to this, the University…  read more 

NPR host Maria Hinojosa to deliver MLK Commemorative Address

Dec 18, 2017

Maria Hinojosa, host of National Public Radio’s Latino USA and PBS’s America By The Numbers, will deliver the University’s 2018 Martin Luther King Jr.  Commemorative Address on Friday, January 19. The four-time Emmy Award winner will speak at 6 p.m. in Strong Auditorium on the River Campus. The event is free and open to the public. Prior to…  read more 

"We each have great capacity to learn, grow, and work together"

Nov 20, 2017

Tiffany Taylor Smith '91 was raised in Dayton, Ohio, and attended high school in the predominately white suburb of Kettering, Ohio. Growing up, her parents encouraged her and her siblings to get involved in whatever they could. From softball to Girl Scouts to school plays, they did it all, and it never mattered that they were usually the only black…  read more 

Mattel CEO, Hajim dean address 'staggering' underrepresentation in computer-related fields

Nov 7, 2017

"It’s imperative that we solve this problem." The leader of the world’s largest toymaker says it’s “unacceptable” that more than half the population is not represented in creating the computer-driven technologies that will fundamentally change the world over the next 20 years. Speaking at the University of Rochester, Mattel CEO Margo…  read more