Student Life gains a new multicultural engagement director

Nov 07, 2018
Joseph Shepard

The Student Life office at Newman University has welcomed new Director of Multicultural Engagement and Campus Life Joseph Shepard.

Shepard is a graduate of Wichita State University where he earned both a Bachelor of Liberal Arts and Sciences and Master of Public Administration. He also earned a nonprofit management certification as well.

He most recently worked for the Kansas Leadership Center (KLC) in Wichita as the program associate for business initiatives. His duties included coordinating programs, supervising interns and building a KLC presence in diverse communities.

As director of multicultural engagement and campus life, Shepard will lead diversity and inclusion initiatives at Newman as well as helping with student life programming.

He will develop and plan programs surrounding the topics of diversity and multiculturalism while enhancing student engagement opportunities through cultural celebration, diversity and inclusion programming and student success initiatives.

Shepard said, “I’m looking forward to using foundational cultural competence versus consciousness in order to help increase the level of education across the campus for faculty staff and students.”

He said Newman was a great fit for him, explaining the importance of its family-like atmosphere.

“Particularly with Newman University,” explained Shepard, “I like the fact that it’s a small campus, so it has that family feel. It just felt like home the second I stepped foot on campus. I think the dean of students, Christine Schneikart-Luebbe, is extremely committed to students and I believe students are the most important part of an institution. And I really want to be part of an institution that allows me to increase my level of faith while at the same time using my passion to create an atmosphere where everyone can thrive and be the best versions of themselves.”

Schneikart-Luebbe said she’s excited to have Shepard join the team.

“He takes passion to a whole new level,” she said. “His desire to serve and to help individuals become the best versions of themselves is second to none. His energy coupled with his desire and passion make him unstoppable. He is like the Energizer Bunny.

“He is all about the students and creating an inclusive environment where all can thrive,” she added. “He is never short on ideas and willing to do whatever it takes to create meaningful opportunities to connect with people. I am thrilled to have him join our team.”