The Center for Inclusive Excellence creates space for all students to explore their intersecting identities and critically engage across differences, centering the experiences of groups that have been historically marginalized and underrepresented in higher education. The CIE hosts programming in conjunction with Heritage Awareness Months; provides trainings and workshops focused on building a more equitable and just society; and, in partnership with Student Involvement and Leadership Development (SILD), advises identity-based student affinity groups.

In order to live the mission and vision of the Center for Inclusive Excellence, as well as those of the Division of Diversity, Inclusion, and Community Engagement at Framingham State University, we commit to:

  • respecting individual differences;
  • affirming the inherent dignity of every member of our community;
  • centering and amplifying student voices and narratives in our work;
  • creating opportunities for courageous conversations about race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, ability, religion, and other identities;
  • advocating boldly and intentionally for equity and social justice;
  • speaking out against acts of hate, discrimination, and harassment;
  • acting with intention, integrity, and transparency.

The Center for Inclusive Excellence is located in O’Connor Lounge (OC 120) on the first floor of O’Connor Hall and is open whenever the building is open. Staff will generally be available from 9:00am to 5:00pm, Monday through Friday.

Upon entering O’Connor Lounge, visitors will find the CIE Main Lounge, CIE Lounge Annex, CIE Classroom, CIE Meeting Room, and office of the Director of the CIE. The Center for Civic Engagement is also located in O’Connor Lounge.

All members of the Framingham State University are welcome to use the CIE when there are no events taking place in the space.

General Guidelines for Using the CIE

We expect all that all visitors to the CIE contribute to maintaining this shared space and keeping it in good order. Please adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Leave the CIE better than you found it!
  • Respect other people who are also using the space.
  • Existing furniture remains as-is. Furniture is not designed to be removed from the space.
  • Additional furniture cannot be added to the space due to capacity.
  • Clean up after yourself. Use the trash and recycling bins to dispose of leftover food and other items.
  • Flooring and furniture must remain in good condition. Spills or other damage that result in excessive cleaning or repairs (e.g., stained upholstery or carpets) will be charged back to the event organizer.
  • Ask CIE staff for help if you are unsure about anything.

Please check back for information about reserving space in the CIE.

Jerome Burke

Jerome Burke joined Framingham State University as the Director, Centre for Inclusive Excellence on June 5, 2023. He is a Jamaican native with over 8 years of experience in communications and working with youth and vulnerable and marginalized groups. Jerome received a Master’s in Integrated Marketing and Communications from the University of the West Indies (Jamaica) and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Technology (Jamaica). 

His programmatic planning and advocacy work include serving as the Communication Consultant for Jamaica AIDS Support for Life, where he created campaigns aimed at improving the lives of People living with and affected by HIV and AIDS and improving access to treatment and prevention services for the LGBTQ+ community.

Jerome has served as a Policy Consultant for Jamaica's leading human rights organization. He has also been instrumental as a project consultant at the Ministry of Health and Wellness, where he implemented a program geared towards providing greater healthcare services for citizens of a lower socio-economic background.

Jerome has designed and led some very impactful human rights and diversity training among key stakeholders and has been recognized for his outstanding work by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and the European Union for communication and outreach strategies he implemented as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Through initiatives he has led, many policymakers, law enforcement officers and healthcare workers have been more sensitive to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Jerome is also a creative writer and director of two of Jamaica’s most popular YouTube film series. He desires to continue creatively advocating for diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, as this is his undying passion.

Jerome Burke
Emma Laurie

Emma Laurie

In September 2022, Emma joined the Center for Inclusive Excellence as the Program Coordinator. Emma graduated from Framingham State University in May 2022 with a major in criminology, and minors in psychology and sociology. During her time at Framingham, Emma was also an intern for the Center for Inclusive Excellence during the Spring 2022 semester, in fulfillment of an upper-level sociology course, Internship in Sociology/Criminology. While an intern, Emma helped develop programming and presentations on topics such as racial, LGBTQ+, and disability justice. She also served as a liaison between the CIE and identity-based student affinity groups, with the goal of fostering an environment for students of intersecting identities to meaningfully engage with one another. She is enthusiastic to rejoin the fRAMily and help expand student support, develop programming to serve the needs of the FSU community, and to try to help make Framingham State University a more inclusive space for all.  

In her free time, Emma enjoys reading, taking her service dog Dixie on walks, baking, and watching the latest show on Netflix. Emma believes heavily that art, specifically media, has a huge impact and that representation matters, and loves to create and share viewing lists of media to highlight marginalized voices.

Contact the Team

Photo of Jerome Burke

Jerome Burke

Director of Inclusive Excellence Initiatives
Photo of Emma Laurie

Emma Laurie

Program Coordinator