Chancellor’s Champions of Inclusion honored at luncheon

From left: Dr. Steve Pankey, Dr. Crystal Johnson, Dr. Victorie Edwards, Dr. Kimberly Beatty, Jim McGraw, Patricia Amick, Eric Thompson


At the second annual Chancellor’s Champions of Inclusion award ceremony, Metropolitan Community College’s diversity leaders were honored for their contributions to accelerating student success.

Five individuals from each of the MCC campuses were named, along with a College program noted for making a difference in the last year.

MCC Chancellor Kimberly Beatty said these awards are about the people who go above and beyond the normal scope of what is expected to create an open and inclusive learning environment for students and employees.

Here is a look at the awardees:

Patricia Amick, MCC Administrative Center

“Patricia’s expectation and support for improving cultural competency through dedicated quarterly training sessions have led to individual inner discoveries and is the driving force for our team’s ability to work in an environment thriving with respect for one another.” — Dr. Kathrine Swanson, vice chancellor of student success and engagement.

Dr. Victorie Edwards, MCC-Blue River

“Dr. Victorie Edwards is the voice of diversity, equity and inclusion at MCC-Blue River. She has helped countless students approach these subjects with passion, respect and understanding. She has led the faculty, staff and administration to embed a focus on diversity, equity and inclusion in everything that we do.” — Dr. Jacqueline Gill, president of MCC-Blue River

Dr. Steve Pankey, MCC-Business and Technology

“(Dr. Pankey’s nominator said,) ‘During the time that I have known him, I have been consistently impressed by Steve’s ability to include diversity into every aspect of his work.’  Steve serves on countless committees both internal and external to MCC and is committed to creating and sustaining environments that are inclusive and equitable for the MCC community.”  — Dr. Jacqueline Gill, president of MCC-Business & Technology

Jim McGraw, MCC-Longview

“Jim has long exemplified a level of commitment to diversity and inclusion at Metropolitan Community College and in the greater Kansas City community. Jim has volunteered to lead several diversity and inclusion events at the MCC-Longview campus.” — Dr. Kirk Nooks, president of MCC-Longview

Dr. Crystal Johnson, MCC-Maple Woods

“She worked with the criterion teams which led to her working with MCC’s curriculum and diversity. Dr. Johnson’s commitment to MCC students is one that is noticed and admired by anyone she encounters. She goes above and beyond for all issues regardless of her schedule and has been involved with the Office of Inclusion and Engagement since its inception.” — Dr. Utpal Goswami, president of MCC-Maple Woods

Eric Thompson, MCC-Penn Valley

“Eric can be seen at almost every diversity event at MCC and in the KC metro area.  He is a true advocate for social justice and inclusion.  Eric excels in working with academic and personal issues facing first generation students, enhancing their opportunities for continued success.” — Dr. Tyjaun Lee, president of MCC-Penn Valley

Program of the Year, Aspire program, MCC-Business & Technology 

Program initiatives included the Girls STEM conference in Fall 2017, which hosted 300 girls grades 6 through 12 to raise gender awareness in STEM fields.

Enjoy a slide show of photos from the event.