From Willamette to CWU

Final SLICE director candidate Emily Kemmerer answers questions in open forum

From Willamette to CWU

Danny Dang, Staff Reporter

CWU held an open forum for candidates applying for the position of Director for Student Leadership Involvement & Community Engagement (SLICE), where they could answer questions and present their motivation for applying as a candidate. The forum hosted by the Dean of Student Success (DOSS) spanned over two days.

One of the final candidates for the position, Emily Morris Kemmerer, got her own day to present herself for the position and answer questions from the community. Kemmerer comes from the Associate Director of Student Engagement leadership from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon. She has experience in student engagement with a history of working with different schools, and presenting at National Association for Campus Activities (NACA). 

One question from the community was, “What do you see as the biggest challenge with coming into this position?” Kemmerer said the position is an upgrading opportunity for her, and finds working with the balance of starting new things as well as respecting ideas that are already existing is challenging.

“I think the challenge is just getting everyone together,” Kemmerer said. 

Another question was, “What have you found in results in non-formal, data driven information that you’re receiving from students?” Kemmerer explained the findings of changing programs based on what was learned from informal assessment, like making a change on a leadership and social change model and approaching people instead of being in a booth.

Kemmerer was asked about her advising style by staff members virtually, which she explained was to build a regular connection between students and her. She emphasized being a bigger part of students’ lives and stated that she holds a more student driven advising style saying “you come to me with what you need, and I’ll fill what I need from you.” 

Members of the DEC asked “What’s your approach to engaging with students and communities who come from a range of identities and backgrounds? Can you speak to your experiences working with students with marginalized identities?” Kemmerer answered by being open and honest and treating students equally. Kemmerer said the current university system is not made for the current people going through it right now, explaining her understanding of barriers that are set against students in marginalized communities. 

Members of the staff also asked about her approach to campus activities in relation to the impact of student engagement on campus and who the main partners would be.

Kemmerer replied with references to past experiences and stating to reach out to resources that she already knows about and further expanding on building more campus partners affirming her main point of bringing the students together more and bringing more engagement between them.