Multicultural Center

Multicultural Peer Advocates

The Mission of the Multicultural Advocate Program (MPA) is to aid in the development of Multicultural Center programs provided to UT Dallas Students. Students who proceed through the program are afforded educational experiences centered on multiculturalism and diversity; they also will develop skills and core competencies valuable to their internship and job searches.

Core Competencies for MPAs+

  1. Leadership Development – Leadership involves a broad spectrum of skills and character qualities. The MPAs must understand that their role is to be a positive change agent, to influence others and create a vision. Leadership is a process rather than a position. Leadership is relationship oriented and situational in nature.
  2. Assessment and Evaluation – The MPAs should make knowledge-based decisions in regard to resources allocated for the campus programs planned and implemented by the MC. They should possess the ability to effectively evaluate programs as well as assess their campus and community culture. Program evaluations will assure the continued improvement of campus activities and comprehensive assessment will allow the Multicultural Center offerings to meet the community development needs of the entire campus.
  3. Event Management – The MPAs have a unique opportunity to learn and practice effective event management. They should strive toward understanding the appropriate steps and issues involved in event planning and management. Some of the most transferable skills are developed and honed in this area such as contract negotiation, program planning and event promotion.
  4. Meaningful Interpersonal Relationships – Establishing meaningful interpersonal relationships are critical for successful leadership in the MPA program. These student leaders often rely on committee volunteers to carry out the essential tasks related to providing programs and services. The work of the MC is often supported by several on and off-campus constituencies. Professionalism, diplomacy and recognizing the support of others will enhance organizational effectiveness.
  5. Collaboration – Collaboration involves seeking the involvement of others and working well with people. The MPAs should actively contribute to the achievement of a group goal. They would seek feedback from others and exhibit growth in their skills as a result of working collaboratively.
  6. Social Responsibility – The MPAs must role model social responsibility at all times but especially when representing the college/university. On and off campus behaviors should match the values of the organization and institution leaders represent.
  7. Effective Communication – Effective communication is a core competency needed by the MPAs to ensure organizational achievement of goals. When communication is a focal point of student learning, individuals will personally benefit and organizations will be run more efficiently.
  8. Multicultural Competency – Multicultural competency is developed through celebration of diverse cultures, advocacy for the needs and identities of all members within the community, recognition of the diverse communities within the campus community and beyond, education and awareness of the concerns of those diverse communities, and support of the ongoing inclusion, understanding and dignity of all members within and beyond the campus community. Being able to understand one’s own identity, as well as recognizing the similarities and differences of others, will equip students to serve and lead as citizens in a global society.
  9. Intellectual Growth – Intellectual Growth is central to the mission of higher education and must be a focus in all endeavors inside and outside the classroom. The Multicultural Center offers a fertile practice field for intellectual development when the MPAs and campus programmers engage in critical thinking, problem solving and decision making. The MPAs should be cognizant of this learning opportunity and apply knowledge learned to enhance organizational goals and personal development.
  10. Clarified Values – Understanding personal and organizational values play a significant role in achieving effective leadership in the Multicultural Center. Clarified values offer the leader a compass to navigate through a variety of leadership situations and challenges. Student leaders and programmers should reflect and engage in the process of values clarification to enhance personal growth and organizational effectiveness.

Additional Competencies+
  1. Enhanced Self Esteem – A meaningful outcome of student leadership is confidence in one’s abilities. Students engaged in campus activities have a unique opportunity to practice a variety of skills and competencies resulting in enhanced self-esteem.
  2. Realistic self-appraisal – The use of reflection and assessment measures to better understand one’s self promote student learning. Realistic self-appraisal enhances what student leaders know about themselves, where work is needed, and areas of accomplishment. Student leaders can utilize this knowledge to effectively share their skills and competencies while seeking opportunities to enhance weaknesses.
  3. Healthy Behavior and Satisfying Lifestyles – Establishing healthy lifestyle habits while in college translates into healthy lifestyle habits after college. Balancing time between school, work, leisure, recreation, and family will help student leaders stay emotionally, physically, and spiritually grounded.
  4. Interdependence – Student leaders need to develop and maintain mutually satisfying relationships. They will understand the need to establish relationships with others toward the achievement of group goals. This is displayed through listening and considering others’ point of view and treating others with respect.
  5. Spiritual Awareness – Personal growth and development of students is enhanced by the recognition of spirituality as an integral component of holistic development. Being able to understand ones own belief systems and the belief systems of others will allow student leaders to better relate to others and deepen their own personal self awareness.
  6. Personal and Educational Goals – Being able to articulate personal and education goals and monitoring progress towards these goals will help students be adequately prepared for life after college. Being able to connect what they are learning in the classroom to their out of the classroom activities/organizations/experiences will enhance their development.
  7. Career Choices – Student leadership can play a significant role toward enhancing opportunities following the undergraduate experience. Student leaders should consider early and frequently educational and position requirements for the work they hope to do upon completion of their formal education. Timely consideration and reflection will allow the student to utilize campus leadership opportunities to hone the skills and competencies necessary for their career choice.

To learn more about the MPAs’ job description, visit our Student Employment page.