During an impassioned speech at a Black Lives Matter rally in June 2020, Deatrea Rose urged those in attendance to come together and help each other.
Everyone, she said, has a role to play in creating a more inclusive, united society.
“We must work together to plot, plan, organize, and strategize real change,” she said during the rally.
As Assistant Vice President for Student Life-Senior Diversity Officer at Pittsburg State University, Rose is at the forefront of the effort to help create a safer and more welcoming community on campus and throughout the Pittsburg community. With students from across the country and around the world, the PSU campus is a true “melting pot” within Pittsburg.
This goes beyond just race or ethnicity.
“I believe the progress we make on campus has an effect on the city and our region,” Rose said. “The lines go far beyond the boundaries of the university.”
Rose said her mission is to help everyone “feel like they matter” and have a sense of belonging.
“This goes beyond just race or ethnicity,” she said. “We also have a lot of work to do for our LGBTQIA+ community and all marginalized groups. The goal is to give them hope that change is on the horizon. We all matter, and the time is now to make sure that everyone’s voice is being heard.”
As a member of the Colonial Fox Theatre Foundation Board of Trustees, Rose said she’s working to help bring diversity of thoughts and ideas to the arts and entertainment community.
There is still work to be done.
“That’s actually been a very valuable board for me to be on,” she said, “because I can provide a different perspective in terms of what types of performances to bring in. It’s just another voice at the table, and all communities need that.”
While there is still much work to be done when it comes to inclusion and equity, Rose said Pittsburg is in a good position on these topics.
“Every interaction I’ve had in this community has been positive,” she said. “I do feel like Pittsburg is doing a good job, but we can’t let up. The minute we think everything is OK, something else can happen that reminds us that we still have work to do.”