Jan. 29, 2004

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Contact: Renate Mai-Dalton, KU Multicultural Scholars Programs, (785) 864-7566.

Board of Regents president to make presentation to KU multicultural scholars

LAWRENCE -- Multicultural scholars from the University of Kansas will meet with the president of the Kansas Board of Regents on Saturday, Jan. 31, and then attend a women's basketball game.

Board of Regents President Reginald Robinson will be the featured speaker at the event, which begins at 5:30 p.m. in the John Hadl Auditorium of the Wagnon Student Athletic Center, adjacent to the Parrott Athletic Complex and Allen Fieldhouse.

The event will bring together about 90 students and the directors of KU's Multicultural Scholars Programs in the schools of pharmacy, architecture and urban design, business, journalism and mass communication, and education, as well as programs in African and African-American studies, human development and family life, and languages and humanities.

Following Robinson's talk, the 90 scholars and their directors will attend the KU-Oklahoma State women's basketball game at 7 p.m. in Allen Fieldhouse.

The Multicultural Scholars Program at KU is recognized as one of the most successful retention programs for students from diverse backgrounds.

Established in 1992 in the School of Business by Renate Mai-Dalton, associate professor of business, the program originally provided comprehensive mentoring and scholarship support to students of diverse backgrounds interested in earning a bachelor's degree in business. In the past 12 years, Mai-Dalton, now director of the KU Multicultural Scholars Program, has expanded the program to eight units with an undergraduate retention rate of 85 percent. The average fall 2003 grade-point average for multicultural scholars at KU ranged from 3.04 to 3.39.

The program is structured to give students from diverse backgrounds at KU the resources to easily access other students, faculty and staff for help and support.

It combines scholarships, tutoring, personalized advising, and cultural and social events to attract and retain a diverse student body at KU. In exchange, students must maintain a 2.5 GPA, attend all program meetings and events, and be honest about their academic progress. A faculty member directs each academic unit of the program and works one-on-one with the scholars.

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