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


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
Headshot of Amy Joa in a pink shirtAmy Joa is a Retention Coordinator for the Center for Multicultural Initiatives. Her primary role includes advising and monitoring academic standing of scholar students, focusing on requirements of maintaining their scholarships. Additionally, she helps the CMI team assess the needs of underrepresented students, and assists in developing and implementing programs and services focused on retention and graduation. She also participates on committees including African American Celebration planning, Circle of Sisterhood, and Student Leader Recruitment. Amy is originally from the metro-Detroit area and has previously worked at various higher education institutions in the Midwest.

Email: ajoa@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

CMI Student
Assistants

Headshot of Raneen Allos in an Oakland University shirt

Raneen Allos
Junior
Health Sciences

Headshot of Keaira Hall in an Oakland University shirt

Keaira Hall
Sophomore
Pre-Business

Headshot of Daziah Mallory in an Oakland University shirt

Daziah Mallory
Junior
Pre-Nursing

Headshot of Lacaya Smith in an Oakland University shirt

Lacaya Smith
Sophomore
Pre-Elementary Education

CORE
Ambassadors

Headshot of Jewel Fisher in an Oakland University shirt

Jewel Fisher
Junior
Psychology

Headshot of Kessia Graves in an Oakland University shirt

Kessia Graves
Senior
Communications

Headshot of Gicentroy Henry in an Oakland University shirt

Gicentroy Henry
Junior
Political Science

Headshot of Zachary Laury in an Oakland University shirt

Zachary Laury
Junior
Health Sci Pre-Physical Therapy

Headshot of Matsimea Miller in an Oakland University shirt

Matsimela Miller
Junior
Health Science/Exercise Science

Headshot of Tia Mullins in an Oakland University shirt

Tia Mullins
Junior
Psychology

Headshot of Mikal Oneal in an Oakland University shirt

Mikal O'Neal
Senior
Health Science

Headshot of Taylour Patterson in an Oakland University shirt

Taylour Patterson
Junior
International Relations

Headshot of John Randle in an Oakland University shirt

John Randle
Junior
Criminal Justice

Headshot of Camille Robinson in an Oakland University shirt

Camille Robinson
Junior
Criminal Justice

Headshot of Ch'Nel Skelton in an Oakland University shirt

Ch'Nel Skelton
Senior
Health Sciences

Headshot of Audrey Smith in an Oakland University shirt

Audrey Smith
Senior
Social Work
Peer
Mentors

Headshot of Julia Alexander in an Oakland University shirt

Julia Alexander
Junior
Political Science

Headshot of Zakia Ali-James in an Oakland University shirt

Zakia Ali-James
Junior
Psychology

Headshot of Samad Ansari in an Oakland University shirt

Samad Ansari
Senior
Music

Headshot of Zaid Asbahi in an Oakland University shirt

Zaid Asbahi
Sophomore
Biology

Headshot of Katelyn Augugliaro in an Oakland University shirt

Katelyn Augugliaro
Senior
Psychology

Headshot of Althea Bullock in an Oakland University shirt

Althea Bullock
Senior
Graphic Design

Headshot of Flavia Di Stefano in an Oakland University shirt

Flavio Di Stefano
Junior
International Relations

Headshot of Eric Henckel in an Oakland University shirt

Eric Henckel
Senior
Political Science

Headshot of Zuhair Issa in an Oakland University shirt

Zuhair Issa
Senior
Political Science

Headshot of Alexis Jordan in an Oakland University shirt

Alexis Jordan
Senior
Human Resource Development (HRD)

Headshot of Ben Lane in an Oakland University shirt

Ben Lane
Junior
Communications

Headshot of Keith Lattimore in an Oakland University shirt

Keith Lattimore
Sophomore
Undecided

Headshot of Shania Lewis in an Oakland University shirt

Shania Lewis
Junior
Health Sciences

Headshot of Lakaysha Mitchell in an Oakland University shirt

Lakaysha Mitchell
Senior
Social Work

Headshot of Carmen Morrell in an Oakland University shirt

Carmen Morrell
Junior
Nursing

Headshot of Destinee Rule in an Oakland University shirt

Destinee Rule
Junior
Political Science

Headshot of Jordan Simmons in an Oakland University shirt

Jordan Simmons
Junior
Criminal Justice

Headshot of Blake Walton in an Oakland University shirt

Blake Walton
Senior
Criminal Justice

Headshot of Colleen Williams in an Oakland University shirt

Colleen Williams
Senior
Communications