LAS Multicultural Liaison Officer wins CYTation award

Alex Cory

Der Vang, multicultural liaison officer in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, was honored with the Professional and Scientific CYtation Award.

As the multicultural liaison officer, Vang is responsible for supporting students of color in the college through academic, professional and social support.

Much of Vang’s work as a multicultural liaison officer includes meeting one on one with students and being their first resource.

“Normally, I’m just a good place to start for students who don’t know where to go,” Vang said.

Vang helped create the BOLD Learning Community, which seeks to provide a space for students of color to experience their first year together, build a community, talk about experiences and develop leadership skills.

“It’s my pride and joy, and it’s also what takes up most of my time,” Vang said.

Vang, who is the coordinator of the program, said it is important for students to have a space to talk about campus resources and reflect on things going on across the nation.

“I can’t really say students are provided a space elsewhere to do that,” Vang said.

Brittney Blackburn, freshman in linguistics, said it can be interesting transitioning to a new college environment because the people might not look the same as they did back home.

Vang said she was very humbled to receive the award, which she was nominated for by another multicultural liaison officer.

“It’s really uplifting to have a colleague who recognizes the work that I do, and also to put my name in and nominate for an award,” Vang said.

Vang was partially inspired to be a multicultural liaison officer after being a first-generation college student. Vang, who was the first in her family to receive a master’s degree, liked working with undergraduate college students.

“Getting inspired every day by students, that’s what motivates me,” Vang said.