MSA still looking for assistant director focused on Asian-American and Pacific Islander students

Louie Lainez

Source: Northwestern

Louie Lainez

Fathma Rahman, Reporter

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Multicultural Student Affairs is still searching for a replacement for one of its assistant directors, Louie Lainez, who left the position earlier this year.

As Multicultural Student Affairs’ Asian-American and Pacific Islander content expert, Lainez’ departure on Sept. 2 has left Multicultural Student Affairs searching for a new coordinator for education and student groups on campus.

The person in the position manages, develops and assesses programs and activities focusing on identity engagement, leadership and education offered by Multicultural Student Affairs, according to the description on NU’s human resources website. The listing has been posted on Northwestern’s job board since Sept. 15.

This assistant director also serves as an expert to the NU community on the experiences of Asian-American and Pacific Islander college students, said Alejandro Magaña, assistant director for Multicultural Student Affairs. Additionally, the role advises groups such as the Asian Pacific American Coalition and the South Asian Student Alliance, assisting them with programming initiatives and continued intragroup growth.

“We will be looking for someone with a strong familiarity with theory and best practices related to the positive identity development of Asian-American and Pacific Islander college students,” Magaña wrote in an email to The Daily.

Matt Herndon, Associated Student Government vice president for diversity and inclusion, said it is important to have people with an expertise in different identities that students can go to who understands the problems students have, especially at a primarily white institution like NU, he said.

“A lot of the time, higher education institutions try to promote diversity by bringing different people into a space, but then they don’t support people when they get to that space,” the SESP junior said. “(Multicultural Student Affairs) does a lot of great work in supporting students with marginalized identities through their initiatives.”

APAC internal president Jeanne Hou had been working with Lainez since her freshman year and said beyond approving budgets and helping with funding and contracting, Lainez built relationships with students.

“He’d always have an open ear to any problem we would have regarding APAC or even just personal things,” the SESP senior. “I would pop into his office at times just to talk about how things are going. … He was really personable, great at communicating and was just always checking in on us, and we appreciated that.”

The position has been filled by an interim director to help APAC and other student groups with contracting and advising, but the rest of the work has been spread out to different advisers throughout the Multicultural Center, Hou said.

“Because we have worked with him for so long, it’s difficult to know who to go to with certain things now,” Hou said. “Louie used to be our go-to for everything.”

Twitter: @fathma_rahman