EMU students team up with NFL to tackle diversity issues
YPSILANTI - With the National Football League’s spotlight squarely focused on Detroit for the upcoming Super Bowl, Eastern Michigan University students are ready to entertain and educate.
EMU students in the CloseUp Theatre Troupe and students in the physical education program of the College of Health and Human Services are teaming with the NFL multicultural outreach program, “One World.One Detroit,” to promote cultural awareness and understanding Jan. 28.
CloseUp, a group of 10 students, will perform scenes that tackle issues related to race and affirmative action as part of an icebreaker for the Super Bowl host committee as well as three groups of 250 young people.
Students from the physical education program will conduct interactive sessions in non-traditional physical activities, such as wheelchair basketball, as part of a cultural diversity fair.
Both the fair and the CloseUp performances are at the new Boll Family YMCA, 1401 Broadway, Detroit. For more information, call the YMCA at 313.267.5300.
“This is a wonderful way to use the energy of Super Bowl week to talk about race, culture and diversity,” said MaryJo Desprez, co-director of CloseUp. “For students from EMU, one of the most diverse campuses in the area, to be a part of this is just a wonderful opportunity.”
“We don’t usually perform for groups outside of universities’ students,” said Jessica “Decky” Alexander, co-director. “We wanted to see if our work translates to different audiences.”
The “One World” outreach program was created by the NFL as a way to address fear, prejudice and stereotyping among young people in a post-Sept. 11 world. The NFL identified a need to create a school curriculum to help young people appreciate diversity and ensure that the legacy of the Sept. 11 tragedy is not one of hate, but one of unity, respect and understanding.
Eastern Michigan University is a public, comprehensive university that offers programs in the arts, sciences and professions. EMU prepares students with the intellectual skills and practical experiences to succeed in their careers and lives, and to be better citizens.
Eastern Michigan University is a public, comprehensive university that offers programs in the arts, sciences and professions. EMU prepares students with the intellectual skills and practical experiences to succeed in their career and lives, and to be better citizens.
Editor's Note: Looking for an expert source for a story? Check out EMU's Eastern Experts online at www.emich.edu/univcomm/easternexperts.