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Meet Our Staff
Claudia Ramirez Islas
Claudia Ramirez Islas serves as the Director of the Intercultural Relations Office. As the Director, Claudia Ramirez Islas helps facilitate intergroup dialogue on themes related to identity development, social justice education, diversity, systems of oppression and best inclusive practices as we strive for a more inclusive and more accepting campus climate.
Claudia Ramirez Islas graduated from Lewis & Clark College with a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art with a Mathematics minor and graduated from San Diego State University with a Master of Arts in Postsecondary Educational leadership with a Specialization in Student Affairs. Dirven by passion for social justice education Claudia Ramirez Islas prides herself in constantly creating safe and inclusive spaces for individuals to freely express themselves and share their story of strength and resilience. As a proud Latina, Claudia Ramirez Islas uses her identity and culture as a way of self-expression that is embodied not on in her work with students but also in her work as a social justice educator, artist, activist and community member.
Claudia Ramirez Islas has facilitated and led various workshops at the reginal and national level, across different institutions and organizations like the National Association for Student Affairs Professionals (NASPA) and the National Conference of Race and Ethnicity (NCORE). Claudia Ramirez Islas has consistently utilized creative mediums like the arts to engage others more deeply and fully on relevant and pressing issues impacting underrepresented communities and students during the current political and social climate.
Claudia Ramirez Islas has utilized her identity, experience, knowledge, and story to influence and contribute to the diversity and inclusion of all community members at every institution that she has been a part of. She has been intentional in giving back to programs and services that have historically supported underrepresented and marginalized populations like the NASPA Undergraduate Fellows Program (NUFP) and has formally mentored different students as they navigate predominantly white spaces within higher education.
Current Year: Freshmen
Major: Environmental Studies and International Relations.
Minor: Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Born: Tegucigalpa, Honduras
Extracurricular Activities/Hobbies: Volleyball and Rugby, watching movie/tv shows and being an environmental advocate.
Fun Fact: I lived for the past 2 years in Hong Kong and can speak English, Spanish and a bit of Mandarin.
Current Year: Senior
Major: International Relations and Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Born: Chicago, IL
Achievements: Lincoln Laureate, Senior 25, and Dean’s List
Extracurricular Activities/Hobbies: First Connection, Future Health Professionals, and Student Government.
Fun Fact: I grew up in an immigrant neighborhood and I love being Afghan-American.
Current Year: Junior
Major: Economics and International Relations.
Born: San Salvador, El Salvador
Extracurricular Activities/Hobbies: International Student Organization, Student Government, First Connection. Love exploring small towns and meaningful conversations.
Fun Fact: Studied high school in a small Dutch town called Maastricht, living one embarrassment moment at the time.
Kgotla ‘Kotch’ Mmopi
Current Year: Junior
Minor: French and Computer Science
Born: Gaborone/Serowe (Botswana)
Extracurricular Activities/Hobbies: OIR Marketing SIRS, VisComm Student Supervisor, UMOJA President, Forester First Mentor, First Connection Mentor
Fun Fact: I enjoy people, I love working with them, and I conveniently also like to create content centered around them… I also hate normality, or rather I appreciate difference and uniqueness, so yeah just be you.
Current Year: Junior
Born: Phoenix, AZ
Extracurricular Activities/Hobbies: Football, President of Rugby Club and the Peer to Peer Program.
Fun Fact: My favorite song to play on guitar in “My Black Submarine” by The Black Keys.
Current Year: Sophmore
Major: International Relations and Religion
Born: Mt. Prospect, Illinois
Extracurricular Activities/ Hobbies: Soccer, Hillel. Avid movie watcher. I love planning trips for myself that I probably won’t take for another ten years.
Fun Fact: My favorite color is yellow because it is happy like the sun.