State Approves Permanent Variance for Gender-Neutral Bathrooms at UMass Amherst

AMHERST, Mass.—Following a yearlong pilot program on campus, the state plumbing board has granted a permanent variance allowing the University of Massachusetts Amherst to keep two multi-stall bathrooms in Baker Residence Hall gender-inclusive.

The bathrooms, both on the first floor of the five-floor dormitory, serve a gender-inclusive housing option in the north wing of the building and the Spectrum: LGBTQIA+ Student Community in the south wing.

In 2017, the university formally...

Ranjanaa Devi

Ranjanaa Devi, Director of Asian Arts and Culture Program, to Retire

Ranjanaa Devi, founding director of the Fine Arts Center’s Asian Arts and Culture Program, will retire Oct. 19 after 35 years with the university.

Devi created the program in 1993 after she was invited by director emeritus Frederick C. Tillis to address the critical need for diverse arts programming at the Fine Arts Center. The program has given center stage to artistic endeavors that reflect many cultures of Asia, bringing to the region work that is often available only in major...

Grant to Boost Child Care Aid for Low-Income Students with Dependent Children

The university has received a $1 million federal Department of Education (DOE) grant to subsidize child care costs for low-income college students who have dependent children.

The four-year funding is provided through DOE’s Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS) program, which supports the participation of low-income parents in post-secondary education.

In 2017, 86 colleges were awarded grants, ranging from $14,000 to $427,000, with an average award of $174,000....

Sid Ferreira

Ferreira to be Honored by 100 Men of Color

Sid Ferreira, special assistant to the vice chancellor for student affairs, will be among those honored at the 100 Men of Color Black Tie Gala and Awards at the Bushnell in Hartford on Friday, Oct. 26 at 8 p.m.

The 6th anniversary celebration of the gala will recognize the contributions of these men of color in business, education, entrepreneurship, entertainment, government and public service and the impact they have made on the lives of people throughout Connecticut and western...

Travel Grants Available for Graduate Students Presenting Family Research

The Center for Research on Families (CRF) will give three travel awards of up to $300 to selected UMass Amherst graduate students who are presenting original family research at a national research conference before May 30, 2019.

The student must be the first author on an accepted paper or poster presentation at the conference. The award money must be used exclusively for travel expenses associated with the conference.

Completed applications for the fall travel awards, including...

IPO, Office for Equity and Inclusion Offer Free Passports to New Applicants

Note: The day of the week of the event has been corrected to Friday.

The International Programs Office (IPO) is co-sponsoring a “passport caravan” event for first-time passport applicants on Friday, Oct. 12 from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. in the Olver Design Building Atrium. 

Students in need of a new passport (not a renewal) who are U.S. citizens and current freshmen, sophomores or juniors enrolled at UMass Amherst are eligible for a free passport. 


Amel Ahmed

Amel Ahmed Named Director of Academic Equity and Inclusion Initiatives

Amel Ahmed, associate professor of political science, has been named the inaugural director of academic equity and inclusion initiatives in the Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI). Led by Enobong (Anna) Branch, associate chancellor for equity and inclusion and chief diversity officer, OEI strives to promote an institutional culture that advances and upholds the university’s commitment to fostering a diverse and inclusive environment.

Ahmed will work to support the university’s...

UMass Week of Memory and Forgetting Begins Oct. 29

UMass Week of Memory and Forgetting: Science, Society, and Senescence” brings together science and art to explore and understand memory from a variety of perspectives through a variety of events from Oct. 29-Nov. 2.

A collaboration between the Initiative on Neurosciences, the Fine Arts Center, the Institute for Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory, and faculty in the department of Spanish and Portuguese studies, it features a reception, a roundtable discussion, a film, two scientific talks...

Chancellor Urges Campus to Stand 'United Against Acts of Hate'

Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy called upon the campus community to stand united against acts of hate in the following broadcast email sent Sept. 27:

Dear Campus Community,

The past week has been marked by a deeply troubling and painful event that once again challenges the core values of our community. A racist threat was discovered written on a restroom mirror in Melville residence hall. I share the frustration and anger that many of you are experiencing as we continue...

Opening Reception for Building Bridges Worker Artist Exhibition Scheduled for Sept. 25

An opening reception for the Building Bridges Worker Art Exhibition is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 25 from 3:30-5:30 p.m., at the Science and Engineering Library, on the second floor of the Lederle GRC Lowrise. Attendees will be able to meet the artists, view their work and enjoy food and drinks during a celebration of the latest in a series of exhibitions highlighting the artwork of UMass Amherst worker artists.

The Building Bridges Public Art and Engagement Initiative recognizes...