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KU to recognize 2017 Men of Merit

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

LAWRENCE — Sixteen students, faculty and staff have been selected as University of Kansas Men of Merit, recognized for positively defining masculinity through challenging cultural norms, taking action and leading by example while making contributions to the university and/or the community.

A reception will take place from 5-6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 7, in the Kansas Room of the Kansas Union. A short ceremony will take place at 5:15 p.m. to individually recognize and honor each man for his campus and community contributions.

This year’s honorees:

  • Harrison Baker — senior, psychology and human sexuality
  • Jeff Chasen — associate vice provost, institutional compliance
  • Hunter Finch — graduate student, higher education administration, University Career Center
  • W. Matthew Gillispie — clinical associate professor, speech-language-hearing: sciences & disorders
  • Kriston Guillot — law student, intern at Legal Services for Students
  • Vikram Lakhanpal — senior, engineering physics
  • Rayfield Lawrence II — sophomore, sociology
  • Juan Pablo Marroquin — senior, journalism & mass communications
  • Dan McCarthy — academic adviser
  • Abdoulie Njai — senior, human biology and pre-med
  • Sam Eastes — senior, journalism and global & international studies
  • Loïc Njiakin — senior, neurobiology, minor in English
  • Joshua Robinson — graduate student, public affairs & administration, city management intern, city of Overland Park
  • Reza Barati — assistant professor, chemical & petroleum engineering
  • Casey James Douglas— junior, sport management
  • Chris Sowa (posthumous) — KU Student Housing

The KU Men of Merit poster campaign was created in 2009 by former KU football player Gary Green. This project is coordinated and sponsored by the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity.

Current research supports the important role gender plays in college students’ identity development and academic achievement. Studies indicate that nationally, male students are less likely to complete a bachelor’s degree than female students. In addition, men are less likely to engage in volunteer activities and participate in student clubs and organizations. This growing gender gap points to the need for college campuses to address the disparity and create mechanisms for increasing men’s involvement, engagement and achievement.

This poster aims to increase awareness of the importance of education and involvement in men’s lives, inspire campus men to take an active role in their college experience and provide role models and mentors for men to be successful. The poster features a quote from creator Gary Green: “It’s not about how many things you’re strong enough to tear down. It’s about how many things you are brave enough to build up with love.”

Posters will be available at the reception, in the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity office, and can be requested by contacting the office.

Sponsors and assistance with this poster include the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity, the Office of Diversity and Equity and the Larken Photo & Video Co.


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