National and International Diversity Leaders, Cultural Extravaganzas Highlight Colorado State’s Diversity Conference

Colorado State University this year hosts its annual Diversity Conference Sept. 26-29 with an expanded schedule including more than 55 workshops and keynote addresses by national and international diversity leaders. The free conference, in its fifth year, has been expanded to reflect Colorado State’s commitment to diversity in its educational teachings and within the student body – and as a member of the regional and national communities as well.

     President Larry Edward Penley will begin the conference with a welcome address at 11:30 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 26, on the Lory Student Center Plaza.

     "The Diversity Conference has become a premier event for our community, providing important learning opportunities for all of us to better understand the issues, challenges and responsibilities we share as members of a diverse society," Penley said. "I encourage all in our community to take advantage of this opportunity to explore challenging issues and interact with some of our nation’s leading thinkers on these issues."

     Immediately following Penley’s remarks, a cultural extravaganza on the plaza will showcase diversity at the university and provide educational opportunities for campus and the Fort Collins communities. The extravaganza provides a platform for various groups to exhibit diverse talents, such as culturally influenced music and dance.

     Conference workshops and events will enhance ethnic, gender, age and cultural awareness, knowledge and skills. The broad-based conference addresses an array of topics about access and opportunities to educational, physical and mental health, business, media and government resources for individuals from all backgrounds.

     Included in the conference workshops are educational opportunities for better inter-cultural communication during job searches and at the workplace, health care interactions and day-to-day interactions. The conference also will explore educational opportunities for and influences of various cultures. Workshops are designed to address topics relevant to audiences as varied as the elderly, homosexual and transgendered people, various ethnic audiences and male and female audiences.

     Keynote speakers at the conference include Morris Dees, founder of the Southern Poverty Law Center; N. Scott Momaday, Pulitzer-prize winning author; and Aly Coln, diversity program director at the Poynter Institute and former diversity reporter.

Although the event is free and open to the public, participants are encouraged to pre-register for workshops because of the popularity of many events. For more information or to pre-register for the conference, visit