RAIN (Reaching American Indian Nations)

Distinct Events for Diverse Students

Published: February 9, 2015

Having a diverse student body encourages learning in a way that textbooks and lectures cannot; allowing peers to learn from each other’s unique life experiences and backgrounds. “This is a diverse nation, so our campus should reflect that, our academia should reflect that,” says UW Bothell’s admissions advisor, recruiter and Native American outreach coordinator, Rachael Meares. In order to do so, the university holds annual events to welcome prospective minority students to the campus. Meares adds, “Our goal is to inspire and encourage college as an option to all minority groups.” Nearly 70 percent of the 2014 incoming first year class is comprised of students from diverse backgrounds. This is due in part to Meares and her colleagues on the admissions staff who are eager to have diverse students pursue higher education, especially at UW Bothell.

On February 6th, the 3rd annual Reaching American Indian Nations (R.A.I.N.) conference brought nearly 100 teens to UW Bothell. American Indian, Alaskan Native, and First Nation students learned how to apply for admissions, listened intently as physics professor Warren Buck provided storytelling, and got their feet dirty while exploring the campus wetlands. Meares, who is devoted to increasing the representation of Native American students at UW Bothell, says that the intention of the event was to show students “why they are here - not only themselves, but for their communities and their ancestors.” A similar event was held on February 13 for Latino students. Additional outreach events are held for Pacific Islander, Black, Latino, first-generation and other historically underrepresented high school students. They give teens the tools to pursue a higher education while showing them that their unique cultures and perspectives will be appreciated at UW Bothell. Learn more about these events here. To view photos from the R.A.I.N. conference, click here.