Center for Multicultural Initiatives (CMI)

North Foundation Hall, Room 104
318 Meadow Brook Road
Rochester, MI 48309
(location map)
(248) 370-4404
cmi@oakland.edu

Hours:
Monday-Friday: 8 a.m. - 5 p.m
Wednesdays with extended hours: 8 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.

Meet the Staff

Professional
Staff
Omar Brown-El is the Senior Director of the Center for Multicultural Initiatives (CMI). His work focuses on designing, implementing and evaluating university-wide student recruitment and retention support programs and services to specifically support the university's mission and goal of achieving and graduating a diverse student body. Mr. Brown-El also concentrates on advocating for systematic change within the institution and on building internal and external relationships with faculty, staff and the OU community to help all students, but particularly underrepresented students, succeed. Omar provides leadership and training to promote diversity throughout all aspects of the university. He also administers departmental programming and student employee's budgets, and provides direct training and supervision to graduate interns and to para-professional staff.

Email: brownel@oakland.edu
Nicole Lucio is the Assistant Director for the Center for Multicultural Initiatives. Her work focuses on designing, implementing and evaluating university-wide student support programs and services designed to increase retention and graduation rates of underrepresented students. She administers departmental programming and budgets as well as trains and supervises graduate interns and para-professional staff. Ms. Lucio conducts diversity training, oversees the programming for Hispanic Heritage Month and facilitates The Circle of Sisterhood. Ms. Lucio is a member of the American Counseling Association and NASPA.

Email: ndlucio@oakland.edu
Christopher HunterChristopher Hunter is a CORE Program Coordinator for the Center for Multicultural Initiatives. As the CORE Program Coordinator, he oversees: The CORE Program, which includes the Summer Bridge Initiative, which is a week-long residential academic enrichment program for incoming first year students; The Circle of Brotherhood, which is an all male peer mentoring group that meets weekly aimed at assisting young men in reaching their full potential; The CORE Ambassadors, which provides support to students beyond their first year. A native of Detroit, MI, Mr. Hunter has an extensive background in student development, community relations, and organizational leadership with institutions such as Federal TRIO, Big Brothers Big Sisters, and 21st Century Community Learning Centers.

Email: cahunter@oakland.edu
Denise Thompkins-Jones is a Retention Coordinator for the Center for Multicultural Initiatives. Her primary responsibilities include, monitoring scholarship requirements of over 150 students and supervision and leadership development of the CMI Peer Mentor team. Additionally, Mrs. Thompkins-Jones develops, implements, and monitors retention strategies to ensure student success, and interacts with student organizations to develop a strong rapport between students and the CMI office. Lastly, Mrs. Thompkins-Jones oversees the programming of African American Celebration Month, Student Leader Recruitment as well as assists in the planning of the CMI's annual Women's Retreat and the Circle of Sisterhood. She is a member of the American Counseling Association and the Black Employee Resource Group.

Email: drjones@oakland.edu
VaNessa Thompson

VaNessa Thompson is a CORE Program Coordinator for the Center for Multicultural Initiatives. VaNessa manages the CORE Program which helps give first-year students a great start to their time at Oakland University. She also participates in planning African American Celebration Month and Circle of Sisterhood. Her love of Michigan and Metro-Detroit is shown not only in her professional experiences in other higher education institutions but also in her free time. She frequently volunteers in many non-profits in the state.  

Email: vthompson@oakland.edu

Lawrence YoungLawrence Young is a Retention Coordinator for the Center for Multicultural Initiatives. His primary responsibilities include advising and supporting CMI scholars to ensure student success. To aid in retention and persistence to goal Lawrence monitors student academic standing to ensure compliance with all scholarship requirements.  During meetings with scholars Mr. Young reviews student success strategies and guides discussions to identify each student’s strengths and areas of opportunity. In addition to these duties Lawrence assists with the planning and facilitation of: The Circle of Brotherhood peer mentorship program; African American Celebration Month; CMI’s Annual Men’s Retreat. Lawrence has previous experience in academic advising and success coaching with first year students. Mr. Young also has significant experience providing career exploration guidance while facilitating job search toolkit seminars and professional development workshops in his previous role as a human resources professional.

Email: lawrenceyoung@oakland.edu

Janice Houston

Janice Houston is the Administrative Assistant for the Center for Multicultural Initiatives. Her responsibility includes providing clerical support to the Senior Director and his staff. Also, she is the first point of contact for students and visitors to the CMI office. Janice holds a degree in Organization Administration from Central Michigan University and comes to OU with years of administrative experience.

Email: jhouston@oakland.edu

CMI Student
Assistants

Raneen Allos in a grey O U shirt

Raneen Allos
Senior
Exercise Science

Keaira Hall in a grey O U shirt

Keaira Hall
Junior
Pre-Business Administration

Daziah Mallory in a grey O U shirt

Daziah Mallory
Senior
Human Resource Development

Caya Smith in a grey O U shirt

Caya Smith
Junior
Elementary Education

CORE
Ambassadors

Cachet Canada in a grey O U shirt

Cachet Canada
Junior
Social Work

Angel Fields in a grey O U shirt

Angel Fields
Sophomore
Pre-Nursing

Maya Ford in a grey O U shirt

Maya Ford
Junior
Women and Gender Studies

Ja Laaiyah Gordon in a grey O U shirt

Ja Laaiyah Gordon
Junior
Pre-Business Administration

TaNiyah Harris in a grey O U shirt

TaNiyah Harris
Sophomore
Pre-Business Administration

Daija Hayes in a grey O U shirt

Daija Hayes
Junior
Health Science

Gicentroy Henry in a grey O U shirt

Gicentroy Henry
Senior
Political Science

Rachel Jackson in a grey O U shirt

Rachel Jackson
Sophomore
Pre-Business Administration

Jalen Johnson in a grey O U shirt

Jalen Johnson
Junior
Biology

Joshua Maxwell in a grey O U shirt

Joshua Maxwell
Junior
Health Sciences

Shy Mckalpain in a grey O U shirt

Shy Mckalpain
Junior
Communication

Keyara Pepper-Cameron in a grey O U shirt

Keyara Pepper-Cameron
Sophomore
Pre-Elementary Education

Marcus Powell in a grey O U shirt

Marcus Powell
Sophomore
Health Sciences

Peer
Mentors

Julia Alexander in a grey O U shirt

Julia Alexander
Senior
Political Science

Zakia Ali-James in a grey O U shirt

Zakia Ali-James
Junior
Psychology

Zaid Asbahi in a grey O U shirt

Zaid Asbahi
Junior
Biology

Ashley Chillis in a grey O U shirt

Ashley Chillis
Graduate Student
Masters of Public Health

Kamryn Dates in a grey O U shirt

Kamryn Dates
Sophomore
Computer Science

Jalen Felix in a grey O U shirt

Jalen Felix
Sophomore
Pre-Nursing

Daniele Jones in a grey O U shirt

Daniele Jones
Senior
Pre-Business Administration

Cheyenne Kucinski in a grey O U shirt

Cheyenne Kucinski
Junior
Exercise Science

Benjamin Lane in a grey O U shirt

Benjamin Lane
Senior
Communication

Shania Lewis in a grey O U shirt

Shania Lewis
Senior
Health Sciences

Beverly Lickeig in a grey O U shirt

Beverly Lickeig
Junior
Psychology

Koreen Ludovico in a grey O U shirt

Koreen Ludovico
Sophomore
Nursing

Nicole Massoud in a grey O U shirt

Nicole Massoud
Sophomore
Psychology

Jennifer Medrano Delacruz in a grey O U shirt

Jennifer Medrano Delacruz
Junior
Psychology

Carmen Morrell in a grey O U shirt

Carmen Morrell
Senior
Nursing

James Moseley in a grey O U shirt

James Moseley
Sophomore
Information Technology

Mikayla Pearson in a grey O U shirt

Mikayla Pearson
Junior
Pre-Human Resource Development

Destinee Rule in a grey O U shirt

Destinee Rule
Senior
Political Science

Jordan Simmons in a grey O U shirt

Jordan Simmons
Senior
Criminal Justice