Contact: Linda Davis
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
United Campus Ministry Celebrates 40 Years
Student-Led Organization at TU Honors Mana Tahaie as Distinguished Alum
Tulsa, Okla., Oct. 4, 2016 — United Campus Ministry at the University of Tulsa is honoring Mana Tahaie with its first Distinguished Alum Award at is annual celebration dinner slated for November 3, 2016 from 6-8:30pm at Harvard Avenue Christian Church.
Tickets and sponsorship opportunities for the fundraising dinner, Blue House Vintage, begin at $25 are available on the UCM website: unitedcampusministry.org. The event will celebrate UCM’s 40^th anniversary and Tahaie’s work in the community. Proceeds benefit programming and operational support of the organization, which services TU students. Blue House will include dinner, bar service, student testimonies and shared memories by attendees.
“Mana and her work in the community truly exemplifies the spirit of UCM,” said Linda Davis, executive director. “We are so pleased to be able to offer this award as a testament to the caliber of students that participate in our program.”
Mana Tahaie, First Distinguished Alum Award Recipient
Mana Tahaie has led the YWCA’s racial justice initiatives since 2008. Under her leadership, the Racial Justice department has grown to include antiracism training, community events, organizational consulting, racial dialogue groups, collaborations, and advocacy. She brings with her an analysis of power, organizational and institutional development, and identity-based oppression.
An advocate for ending oppression in all forms, Mana has devoted her career and personal life to social justice. Before joining the YWCA Tulsa, Tahaie served as the Deputy Director of Oklahomans for Equality, Tulsa’s LGBT advocacy organization and community center. She currently chairs the board of the Center for New Community and serves on the community advisory board of the TU Women’s & Gender Studies department. She is a previous board president at UCM.
The first in her Iranian family to be born in the U.S., Mana has lived in Oklahoma most of her life, moving to Tulsa to study Political Science at The University of Tulsa. In college, she was active in a number of student activist organizations and a leader in the UCM student community.
“UCM was absolutely transformational in my life. I didn’t consciously know it as the time, but as a TU student, I desperately needed a place where I felt like I fit, where I mattered, where I could connect with people who were on the same journey of self-discovery I was. The Little Blue House was a quirky, progressive, welcoming oasis on an otherwise homoegeneous and apathetic campus. Instead of the classroom, UCM is where I had frank conversations about social issues, identity, and justice. It’s where I found my voice as an activist. It’s where I learned intersectionalism before it was a buzzword. I’m humbled to be honored by a place that has literally saved the lives of so many students at TU, and has been a force for change in our community.”
About United Campus Ministry
United Campus Ministry is a non-discriminatory, all inclusive safe place for all students on the University of Tulsa campus. In this current day of expressed hatred, violence and racism, UCM fills a critical need for TU students to have a safe harbor. For so many students—finding a place free of ridicule and discrimination, or even just a place to belong—is difficult. We provide that place.
Students join together in #IStandForPeace Rally in January 2016
UCM welcomes those who identify as spiritual but not religious, and those who don’t identify religiously at all. In the spirit of justice, we strive to uplift the voices of LGBTQ+ students, women, people of color, people of all socio-economic backgrounds, and those with disabilities. UCM’s mission: In cooperation with area congregations, United Campus Ministry awakens an ecumenical voice for peace and justice on the University of Tulsa campus by fostering a benevolent and inclusive environment, which nurtures both spiritual and academic growth within the university community.