The new director of the Center for Student Diversity, Tirrany Thurmond, began her first day on Nov. 1. Thurmond is very excited to be at the Mount.
“When I met the faculty, staff and students, I thought there was a lot of great work to be done here,” she told the Echo.
Thurmond was first drawn to the Mount because of its intimacy and attractive campus – she previously worked at universities with 14,000 people. It was very different from what she was used to. She first heard about the position from a Facebook post and constantly looks to improve her channel of work and perfect her craft.
“I enjoy the dynamics of a small liberal arts university.” She explained, “there’s something to be said about the connections in a smaller space. They’re strengthened in a small environment.”
Her role here at the Mount is to support students in all of the ways we are diverse. “I can impact change quickly because it is a small campus,” stated Thurmond. This includes providing a safe space for students to be their total selves and encouraging an appreciation of diversity.
“My hopes are that my job pushes forth a collected agenda and for students to feel more affirmed in their experiences,” Thurmond said. “My hopes are to continue to build a campus that is fun, supportive, kind and full of compassion. I hope students have an appreciation for culture and differences and similarities amongst all of us.”
Thurmond acknowledged that there will be challenges to this job, firstly stating the difference of what CSD does and what people think they do. “I think there’s this idea that we do only limited things, but in reality it’s all integrated.”
Thurmond’s personal challenges for the new job include getting acclimated to campus and learning the culture of this campus. She is eager to learn the systems on campus that will aid in her success.
Thurmond has been enjoying her time here so far. “It has been insightful, I’ve met some great colleagues and exceptionally bright and eager students.”
Thurmond is from Winder, Ga. and received her undergraduate degree from Savannah State University and her master’s degree at Georgia Southern University.
Her favorite quote is by Maya Angelou, “People may not remember what you said or did but they’ll always remember how you made them feel.” Thurmond acts on feelings, or integrity, compassion and kindness. “I hope to supply a place where individuals feel supported and welcomed.”
Photo courtesy of Kacie Sneeringer.