Melissa Grey, professor of psychology, and Jenna Bazzell, associate professor of English, oversee this project.
Grey and Bazzell introduced the Safe Space, located in Room S-167, in 2022. This is a space designed for students to feel welcome and safe.
“We approached the college about creating the room in 2019, and it’s been a collaborative effort ever since,” Grey said.
Grey and Bazzell said they plan to use this area to launch Project Safe Space, which is meant to strengthen student activism, lift marginalized voices and influence positive change. They will also collaborate with MCCC alumni who can provide advice and support.
Members of the project’s student advisory council are eligible for a stipend of $540. Meetings will take place every other week, starting in October. Dates have not yet been announced.
Grey and Bazzell said they are able to do this through a $11, 250 grant from the Beverly Heck Endowment Fund, which goes into effect on Oct. 1.
Josh Myers, executive director of The Foundation, said Beverly Heck was an educator and leader.
“Bev Heck was a well-known civic leader in the Monroe Community,” Myers said in an email.
“She served as an educator for many years, and ended her career as the director of the Arthur Lesow Community Center in the City of Monroe until her retirement.”
Myers said The Foundation had designated the endowment.
“In her estate, Bev gave an unrestricted gift of $280,748,” Myers said. “Since this was a substantial gift, The Foundation Board of Directors decided to designate an endowment in her memory.”
Grey said it’s part of Heck’s legacy that this project is getting her support.
Grey and Bazzell said they hope that students can empower each other and connect to others through Project Safe Space.
“The idea would be to make a connection to the greater community,” Bazzell said.
On Thursday, Sept. 28 in S-167, Project Safe Space will host an event from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. with craft supplies to “make your mark.”