Students Earn Diversity Awards

May 05, 2021

Graduating seniors Fatouma Keita and Kimberley Melck are recognized by the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

diversity award winners

Fatouma Keita (left), Jennie Carter Distinguished African American Student Award winner; Robert Thorn, interim University President; Sheleta Camarda-Webb, interim chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer; and Kimberley Melck, Jan Zivic Outstanding LGBTQ+ Leadership Award winner.

Two graduating seniors have received awards from the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Cal U. 

Fatouma Keita, a communication disorders major, received the Jennie Carter Distinguished African American Student Award, named for Cal U’s first African-American graduate. 

Kimberley Melck, a computer information systems major with a minor in business, received the Jan Zivic Outstanding LGBTQ+ Leadership Award. 

The award is sponsored by Zivic, a 1964 graduate of Cal U, who is a supporter of Lambda Bridges and Cal U’s gay and lesbian community. She has endowed a scholarship for undergraduates involved in LGBT organizations and provides a monetary gift to accompany the leadership award. 

“We are pleased to honor these students with these awards for their hard work and involvement during their time at Cal U,” said Sheleta Camarda-Webb, interim chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer. 

“They have taken advantage of the opportunities that Cal U has to offer our undergraduate students and have helped us to become a more diverse, equitable and inclusive campus.” 

Keita has served as president of the African Student Association as a senator of Student Government. She is the 2020-2021 recipient of the Social Equity and Justice Scholarship, and she has worked in the offices of Social Equity and the dean of the Eberly College of Science and Technology. 

“For these four years, i was given a space to figure who I am,” Keita said. “I was given opportunities that were beyond my comfort zone, and I used them as a learning experience.” 

Melck is a member of Cal U’s track and field team. She served as president of the Rainbow Alliance and president of Phi Sigma Pi. She was in a Presidential Scholar and a student in the Honors Program. 

“My experience at Cal U was significant because of all the communities that I was involved with on campus and how Cal U gave me the environment to grow into the person I am today,” she said.