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Mayra Lewis

Summer 2011


I am nominating: Mayra Lewis

Years of Service at Cal Poly: 1

Department: Office of Student Life & Cultural Center

Position: Assistant Coordinator, Violence Prevention & Women's Resource Center

Why are you nominating this person? Why do you think he/she deserves the award?:

Mayra Lewis has been a sensational employee since she began working at Cal Poly Pomona in Spring 2010. She is extremely knowledgeable about dynamics, trauma, prevention and advocacy as it relates to intimate partner violence. Mayra is open to constructive feedback and seeks training opportunities to strengthen her skill set. She has volunteered her time after hours to become a certified domestic violence counselor. In one year she has developed strong relationships with campus partners such as the University Police Department, Counseling & Psychological Services, the Wellness Center, ASI and the Office of Student Life & Cultural Centers. The students at the Violence Prevention & Women’s Resource Center appreciate her approachability and mentoring, as she has organized weekly trainings for them on intimate partner violence. Mayra has also developed new educational programs on violence against women during the past school year which include: The Silent Witness Project for Domestic Violence Awareness Month, In-Class Presentations on Bystander Intervention, RAD Self-Defense Classes, the Just Between Men Conference, Prom For a Cause, and training curriculum for the University Police Department on Violence Against Women

Please select 3 of the 6 Division of Student Affairs values for which your nominee best exemplifies: Interconnectedness, Quality, Richness of Diversity

Please share how your nominee exemplifies value #1:

Mayra Lewis has collaborated with the University Police Department in strengthening training for first responders on violence against women. She has also worked with the Detectives on developing a curriculum for prevention education programs on stalking. She has co-facilitated the stalking workshops with the PD in the residential halls. Mayra also strengthened the collaboration with the police department by sitting on the team that organized the RAD self-defense classes. These self-defense classes were developed by a team of Officers and Mayra to offer Cal Poly women an opportunity to learn hands on self-defense techniques. Mayra also introduced new program the Silent Witness Project to the university for domestic violence awareness month. She collaborated with Domestic Violence Shelter House of Ruth, Santa Monica Community College and The Covina Women's Club Domestic Violence Action Coalition to showcase the Silent Witness Project during special events throughout the school year.

Please share how your nominee exemplifies value #2:

Mayra’s work ethic and quality of work is superb. When introducing new programs to the university, she is open to feedback and chairing committees to ensure that all stakeholders needs and ideas are addresses and recognized. She has done a great job in empowering students and faculty to participate in the program development process, which strengthens the success of the Violence Prevention programs. To date, she has organized training for 777 individuals on intimate partner violence, training over 600 people more in comparison to last fiscal year! While organizing the Vagina Monologues her oversight help raise over $8,000. Since she has began working at Cal Poly Pomona she has organized educational programs outreaching to a total of 9408 individuals; a 39% increase in total outreached in comparison to last year. When hired as the Assistant Coordinator, Mayra already had valuable experience as a certified sexual assault counselor. During the Winter 2011 quarter, she further strengthened her advocacy skills by becoming a certified domestic violence counselor and voluntarily participated in training twice a week from 6pm-10pm. She accomplished all of this while completing her last year as a masters student and completing research for her thesis.

Please share how your nominee exemplifies value #3:

Richness in Diversity. Mayra is well versed in diversity issues and does an excellent job in highlighting how “isms” can negatively or positively affect a survivors experience with intimate partner violence. She has organized trainings on the LGBT experience with intimate partner violence, the Latina survivors experience with intimate partner violence, and violence against women on a global level. Mayra has also advised the Men Against Violence group and has assisted in the recruitment of 15 active members. She chaired the first “Just Between Men” Conference which addressed men’s role in violence prevention. In this conference she invited Ted Bunch, co-founder of A Call to Men, to train professional staff, community partners, students, and faculty on how to engage men in violence prevention efforts in our community. Mayra has also offered her advocacy skills in Spanish for Spanish speaking clients and support persons. Throughout the past year Mayra has also worked towards the completion of her Master’s Degree in Community Psychology and is conducting research on the experience of Latina Survivors of Sexual Assault. She is working with a variety of Spanish speaking victim advocates and rape crisis centers to develop a Spanish educational film on sexual assault which will be used by rape crisis centers in Southern California.

In what way(s) does this person enhance or contribute to the Cal Poly Pomona campus community?:

Overall I enthusiastically recommend Mayra Lewis for the STAR award as she her drive for excellence, creativity, and collaborative mindset has strengthened and diversified the Violence Prevention & Women’s Resource Center. Through her work our office has become regionally recognized by the Domestic Violence Action Coalition, local rape crisis centers, domestic violence shelters, and neighboring universities. Mayra constantly leads by example, empowering the students of the Violence Prevention & Women’s Resource Center to be fully engaged in prevention efforts. Mayra actively contributes to making our Cal Poly Community safer and socially conscious.