Lance Hines-Butts has had a vision for campus unity at Shippensburg University campus since his sophomore year. Next week, this vision will become reality as Diversity Week, a full week of programming focused on educating and celebrating the diversity on campus.
Hines-Butts and Lucas Everidge, both members of the Student Government Association, have worked with Shippensburg University President Laurie Carter and a nine-person team composed of other students to make Diversity Week possible. The student members are Skylar Walder, Toby Hodges, Matthew Klipp, Ace Walker, Abdulomar Tucker, Stephen Washington, Demetrius Lester, Ingrid Rosario and Kiayrah Wehr.
Hines-Butts said he had spoken with Carter about his idea in meetings before. During a summer town hall meeting, Carter asked how the planning was going for the event and a few days later he pitched his idea, according to Hines-Butts.
Hines-Butts said Carter supported the idea and that they could make Diversity Week. Hines-Butts’ vision for the week is to change the culture of the campus and bring cultural competency. In the future, Diversity Week officials said they hope to make the week a community event with interactions in the town of Shippensburg and with local businesses. Diversity Week will be an event held every semester, Everidge said.
“It is a full week of programming. We have organized the days based on different topics of diversity,” Everidge said. “Speaking broadly most of our events are hosted by experts in their fields. We have professors as well as professionals coming to campus.”
SU professors will host events including Jayleen Galarza and Nicole Santalucia, who will speak Oct. 12, focusing on gender and sexuality, according to Everidge.
“We’re not experts in every field of diversity, so we had to find those who are,” said Everidge.
Hines-Butts and Everidge have also worked with university professors to invite experts from outside the university like Eduardo Bonilla-Silva, a race scholar from Duke University, and Julian Saporiti, an expert from Brown University.
While Hines-Butts and Everidge want to have the event fully in person; however, because of the COVID-19 coronavirus, Diversity Week events will largely be held on Zoom with a few in-person events.
“We have worked hard on this. Everyday we have put the time in, countless hours,” Hines-Butts said.
“We want people to come ready to learn and to come with an open mind to soak in knowledge,” Everidge said.
For more information about Diversity Week, visit