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Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Awards

The 2023 Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Awards

The purpose of the Rodney K. Sisco Students' Choice Award is to recognize staff and faculty members who embody the Kingdom inclusive traits of the late '84, and who have made outstanding contributions towards advancing the purpose and goals of Wheaton’s College Christ-Centered Diversity Commitment.

With Mr. Sisco's legacy in mind, the Award celebrates student-nominated Wheaton College faculty and staff members who champion efforts resulting in greater diversity, Kingdom inclusion, justice, and unity for all Wheaton College community members. 

*Campus members are welcome to nominate staff and faculty members for the Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students Choice Awards using the links below starting October 3, 2022. 

Nominate a Faculty member for the award
Nominate a Staff member for the award

 

Wheaton's Kingdom Diversity Champions

We recognize and celebrate the work of each faculty and staff member who engages in diversity work at Wheaton College. Their commitment and dependability increase the sense of belonging for all Wheaton students, faculty, and staff. Each diversity champion has impacted many lives and deepened Kingdom diversity, inclusion, justice, and unity at Wheaton College and beyond. 

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Meet The 2022 Award Honorees

The Wheaton College Office of Intercultural Engagement is pleased to announce Wheaton's 2022 diversity champions, Dr. Theon Hill and Dr. Mary Yeboah. Dr. Yeboah and Dr. Hill have demonstrated exceptional service to Wheaton College students by deepening Kingdom diversity, inclusion, justice, and unity in their efforts on Campus. Through contributions, seen and unseen, both honorees have sacrificially shared their time, talents, and resources to the glory of God for the sake of the body of Christ. They will each be presented with a custom-made glass trophy and a $1000 cash prize at our annual awards ceremony. 

The Fourth Annual Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Awards Ceremony

The 2022 Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Award Faculty Honoree

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Theon Hill (Ph.D., Purdue University) is an Associate Professor of Communication at Wheaton College where he researches and teaches on the intersections of African American rhetoric, politics, and popular culture. His work has appeared in numerous scholarly journals, edited collections, and popular outlets, including Religion News Service, Faithfully Magazine, Christianity Today, and the Chicago Tribune. Currently, he is in the final stages of completing his first scholarly book, an extended study of the future of Black political rhetoric in the 21st century. Theon regularly consults for corporate and nonprofit organizations on matters related to DEI, workplace communication, and leadership. Theon also is an active member of efforts to promote racial justice and change in his local community. For his efforts, he was recently named a Civil Society Fellow with the Aspen Institute and ADL. In this two-year fellowship, Theon will study community-based strategies for promoting civic dialogue in an age of division with the ultimate goal of developing a venture to promote justice and equity in his community.

 Wheaton College students are saying;

"He works to move the needle and change people's minds who don't care about diversity and passionately teaches in such a way that has opened many students up to caring about justice in a way that is kingdom-oriented.


The 2022 Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Award Staff Honoree

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Mary Yeboah is the Director of Graduate Student Life at Wheaton College in Wheaton, IL, and a member of the college's Diversity Council. Her work includes engaging graduate students in racial and ethnic identity development and intercultural understanding as well as leading faculty and staff to create more culturally responsive spaces in and out of the classroom. She is a member of the Illinois State Board of Education Diverse and Learner Ready Teachers Network and she serves on the District 200 Equity Task Force and Citizens Advisory Committee. Prior to her work in higher education, Dr. Yeboah lead local and international schools in West Africa and conducted research on post-colonial education development in rural Ghanaian communities. She began her professional career as a public school teacher where she participated in various school leadership committees including serving as a district data interpreter tasked with recommending data-driven strategies for reducing achievement gaps in K-12 education. Dr. Yeboah's research examines the impact that racialized systems have on teachers, specifically within the context of their teacher identities, conceptions of race, and collegial relationships. She holds a BA in Art Education from Judson University, an MBA from Northern Illinois University, and a PhD in Organizational Leadership and Policy Development from the University of Minnesota.

Wheaton College students are saying; 

"Dr. Mary from day one of orientation has worked tirelessly to integrate conversations on inclusion and diversity in the graduate school. She is hospitable, a great listener, encouraging, and humble."


 

Meet The 2021 Award Honorees

The Wheaton College Office of Intercultural Engagement is pleased to announce Wheaton's 2021 diversity champions, Dr. Michael McKoy and Pastor Raymond Chang. Pastor Chang and Dr. McKoy have demonstrated exceptional service to Wheaton College students by deepening Kingdom diversity, inclusion, justice, and unity in their efforts on Campus. Through contributions seen and unseen, Dr. McKoy and Pastor Chang have sacrificially shared their time, talents, and resources to the glory of God for the sake of the body of Christ. They each received a custom-made glass trophy and a $1000 cash prize at our annual awards ceremony. 

Wheaton's Third Annual Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Awards

The 2021 Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Award Faculty Honoree

Dr. Michael McKoy- headshot, smiling, empty room

Dr. Michael McKoy is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Politics and International Relations and Director of the Peace and Conflict Studies program at Wheaton College (IL).  Michael is originally from East Orange, NJ, and earned a B.A. in Political Science and History from Duke University in 2002, and earned an M.A. and Ph.D. in Politics from Princeton University in 2008 and 2012, respectively.  His research focuses on the international politics of revolutions, and more recently on the international political thought of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Dr. McKoy is married to Ms. Angela Fortner McKoy, who earned a Ph.D. in Chemistry from Princeton University in 2011.  They have three children—Shaddai (8), Julietta (5), and Seth (2)—and are expecting their fourth child in April of this year.

Wheaton College students are saying;

"Dr. McKoy is an incredible faculty member who; reaches for a diversity of opinion, includes all members of a class, and is very good at knowing his students' personalities. He is concerned with biblical justice and how to achieve it, and though we talk about difficult topics, he is unifying and peacemaking in tone. He also works as our Foreign Policy professor to make us caring global citizens and is an overall great professor."

 


The 2021 Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Students' Choice Award Staff Honoree

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Pastor Raymond Chang is the President of AACC, a pastor, and a writer. He regularly preaches God’s Word and speaks throughout the country on issues pertaining to Christianity and culture, race, and faith. He has lived throughout the world (Korea, Guatemala, Panama, Spain, China), traveled to nearly 50 countries, and currently lives in Chicagoland, serving as a campus minister at Wheaton College. Prior to entering vocational ministry, Pastor Chang worked in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors and served in the Peace Corps in Panama. He is currently pursuing his Ph.D. He is married to Ms. Jessica Chang, who serves as the Chief Advancement and Partnerships Officer of the Field School.

Wheaton College students are saying;

“Pastor Chang has served to make sure everyone around him felt safe no matter their ethnicity and background. He also serves to help students of color feel empowered and represented in every context. He has encouraged Asian and Asian American leaders to be unafraid to bring our full selves to the table and be bold in our actions and faith.”


 

Meet The 2020 Award Honorees

The Wheaton College Office of Intercultural Engagement was pleased to celebrate last year's honorees, Dr. Nathan Cartagena and Mr. Daniel Watts. Mr. Watts and Dr. Cartagena. They have both demonstrated exceptional service to Wheaton College students by deepening diversity, inclusion, justice, and unity in their efforts on campus. Through contributions seen and unseen, Dr. Cartagena and Mr. Watts have sacrificially shared their time, talents, and resources to the glory of God for the sake of the body of Christ.

They each received a custom-made glass trophy and a $1000 cash prize on Wednesday, February 5th, 2020 in Edman Memorial Chapel. Reverend Doctor Bernice A. King delivered the Award Ceremony Keynote entitled "A Prophet Without Honor" as part of The Second Annual Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Student's Choice Award in connection with the Inaugural Rodney Sisco Symposium

The 2020 Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Student's Choice Award Faculty Honoree

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Dr. Nathan Cartagena is an Assistant Professor of Philosophy and also serves as the faculty advisor for Unidad Cristiana, a student group that was formulated to enhance Christian unity and celebrate Latino cultures. Dr. Cartagena was selected as this year’s faculty honoree because he has collaborated in scholarship and community to cultivate a deep appreciation for diversity in worship, cultural expressions, and ways of knowing. He has excelled in listening, encouraging, mentoring, and supporting diverse students.

Wheaton College students are saying:

“Dr. Cartagena has demonstrated commitment to the cause of racial justice through leading reading groups, mentoring graduate and undergraduate students, and producing popular as well as scholarly material on the topics. Dr. Cartagena is a man of great honor, conviction, and love for his neighbor. He is a professor who teaches with passion and heart, imparting significant knowledge to his students and creating awareness of what it means to live justly, in mercy, and understanding. He calls out his brothers and sisters in fraternal correction in Christ, but he also shows the highest level of mercy. He is intelligent, kind, and is doing glorious work for the Kingdom.”

 


The 2020 Rodney K. Sisco Diversity Student's Choice Award Staff Honoree

photo of Daniel Watts, man smiling in front of building

Mr. Daniel Watts is the Manager of the Building Roads to Intellectual Diversity and Greater Education (BRIDGE) program. The BRIDGE is a four-week intensive and residential academic and leadership program that brings together high-achieving, first-generation college-bound African-American and Latino students from the Chicagoland area who are eager to experience the academic rigor of college.

Mr. Watts was selected as this year’s staff honoree because he has worked diligently to enhance institutional policies, programs, and systems to strengthen and sustain equity-minded practices. He creates a welcoming and supportive climate for students entrusted to his care.

Wheaton College students are saying:

“Daniel Watts advocates and creates support for racialized minorities who participate in the BRIDGE program. He always has his office open for anybody to come in and have a safe space to do homework, listen to music, talk or just hang out. He has developed welcome systems for minoritized ethnic groups who matriculate into Wheaton College. He mentors those at Wheaton not only with words but with his actions and presence. Through his multiple roles as a mentor, teacher, and friend, numerous students from the BRIDGE program have grown academically, spiritually and socially. He embodies self-sacrificial love and grace-filled compassion.”