Office of Minority Student Affairs |University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Welcome to the Office of Minority Student Affairs

For nearly 50 years, the Office of Minority Student Affairs continues to be a campus leader in delivering exceptional mentoring, success coaching, tutoring, college prep, research training, graduate school preparation, 2nd year and beyond scholarships, academic recognition events, and many other academic and retention support services and advocacy for African-American, American India, Latino/a, Multi-racial, Educational Opportunities Program, TRiO, and President's Award Program students at all academic levels.

TRiO McNair Scholar Receives John Bardeen Award


TRiO McNair Scholar, Juan Pablo Llinas, was recently selected as the recipient of the 2014 John Bardeen Award. This award is given annually to one student in Electrical and Computer Engineering at UIUC. To read more about this prestigious award, visit the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering website. Additional awards and recognitions that Mr. Llinas has received in the fall 2013 semester include: Bradley J. Griffis Scholarship, Henry O. Koehler Merit Scholarship, Texas Instruments Scholarship, Schlader Memorial Scholarship, Hayward Tau Beta Pi Scholarship, BP Scholar, and he also led the team that won the 2013 SHPE National Academic Olympiad.

Former OMSA Director Michael Jeffries Creates Scholarship for OMSA Students


Michael Jeffries, former Associate Dean of Students and OMSA Director, has created a scholarship for OMSA students. The scholarship is named the Dean Michael L. Jeffries and Mrs. Gayle Jeffries and Friends Office of Minority Student Affairs High Achievement Scholarship. The scholarship will be provided annually to persons served by OMSA. The eligibility criteria will be a 3.0 grade point average from the previous year at Illinois and recipients will be students who demonstrated interest in pursuing studies in graduate school or professional school. The primary focus will be on students from Chicago Public Schools who are participants in OMSA activities. The first award will be given at the 46th Annual OMSA Mom’s Day Scholastic Awards Ceremony in April 2014.


TRiO McNair Scholar Wins Award at SACNAS


University of Illinois student, Carol Villanueva-Perez (pictured left), won an award for her poster presentation at the SACNAS (Society for the Advancement of Chicanas/os and Native Americans in the Sciences) Conference in San Antonio this fall. Approximately 1,300 undergraduate and graduate students presented their research at this annual conference that draws more than 4,000 antendees. Ms. Villanueva-Perez was one of less than 10 students in the social sciences who won an award. Her poster presentation, System Justification in Children, was created with the guidance of her research mentor, Dr. Andrei Cimpiam, an Assistant professor in the Department of Psychology.

Five more scholars from our program presented at this conference:

  1. It’s the Subtle Things That Shape Our Education: Racial Microaggressions In The Classrooms Of a Predominantly White University by Ashley I. Ojiemwen;  Research Mentor: Dr. Ruby Mendenhall
  2. Analysis of Hospital Charges: Comparing Three Services in Illinois by Javier Lopez;  Research Mentor: Dr. Stephen J. Notaro
  3. Educational Goals & Attainability in the African American Community by Lynnette Allen;  Research Mentor: Dr. Christopher Span
  4. Brown Before 42: The Story of Three Latinos Playing Baseball for Chicago During World War II by Mariano Nava;  Research Mentor: Dr. Adrian Burgos, Jr.
  5. Real Housewives, Real Stereotypes by Ta’les Love;  Research Mentors: Drs. Christopher Benson & Janice Collins












Tutors of the Year 2013

We had two Tutors of the Year for 2013. Marcus Sanders was the student pick and Rachel Hamilton was the staff pick. Marcus and Rachel have both been tutoring at OMSA-East for one year. Marcus is a sophomore in Engineering with a major in Electrical Engineering and has been tutoring chemistry courses. Rachel is a junior in LAS majoring in MCB and Political Science and she’s been tutoring chemistry and MCB courses. They both exhibit the traits that you would expect from a Tutor of the Year: congeniality, reliability, concern for the students they were tutoring, patience, and dedication to doing a good job. Marcus worked as a “matched” tutor who met with the same students every week. He received an overwhelming majority of the student nominations submitted this year. Quotes from several of his nominations:

“He went above and beyond to explain the most difficult concepts in Chemistry using the simplest words as well as life experiences. Best part is that he is extremely patient in which, for the first time ever, it gave me confidence to be able to express my concerns and continue to ask for help…”

“ Marcus is an amazing tutor. He always knew what he was talking about and explained things very well and in detail so I completely understood the material.”

“ What I loved about Marcus’ sessions was that he showed that he knew what he was talking about and was extremely patient. Unlike most tutors he would challenge me after going over a topic to make sure I properly understood the material.”

“ He comes up with great anecdotes and techniques to help me understand the Chem concepts better. Marcus is very intelligent and a great tutor because I have never walked away from a session without learning something new and having my questions answered.”

Rachel Hamilton was the staff pick because, as a walk-in tutor, she didn’t meet with the same group of students every week for the whole semester. She saw students on a “drop-in” basis throughout the year and didn’t really get a chance to forge relationships with them in the same way that our matched tutors do. Nevertheless, we were able to observe her work and we were very impressed with her personable and knowledgeable approach to tutoring. We watched her employ multiple learning style methods to reach her students and she never let her students leave a tutoring session feeling confused or frustrated. Rachel also exemplified what the staff most appreciates in a tutor -- she was mature, dependable, enthusiastic, likeable, and always willing to help out with review sessions.

Other tutors who received at least one nomination for Tutor of the Year this year were: Kelsey Drawhorn, Spencer Jones (winner of Tutor of the Year in 2012), Christina Mendez, and Desoray Williams.