Dotty Slick leaves to pursue master’s degree

Intercultural Affairs Associate Daria “Dotty” Slick, who recently returned to campus after being placed on academic leave last semester, is leaving again to go back to school this May for a master’s degree in social work.

Slick worked on the Peer Connection Pre-Orientation Program (PCPOP), served as a mentor to the Posse 5 group from Los Angeles, created the Social Justice Leadership Retreat, and advised student groups and individual students. Known to many students on campus, Slick has worked closely with many multicultural and diversity-themed groups during her five years at Grinnell.

Dotty Slick, Intercultural Affairs Associate in the office of Diversity and Achievement. Photograph taken by Cait De Mott Grady.

“She is an advocate for students, especially for students with multicultural or first-generation needs,” said Michelle Okafor ’11, who worked under Slick as a student staff worker for Intercultural Affairs. “Some people may not know what exactly she does, but she is everywhere and has the resources to provide you with anything you need.”

Slick currently holds a B.A. in social work and a master’s degree of Postsecondary Education in Student Affairs and plans to go back to school for a second master’s degree in social work and be trained as a counselor.

“I learned through my work at Grinnell that I really love the one-on-one and small group work” Slick said. “And I find that’s where I get a lot of my energy from.”

Slick is not only known among students who may have worked with her closely, but also among students who know her for her accessibility and advocacy for students.

One of the significant changes throughout Slick’s time at Grinnell was the restructuring of the Stonewall Resource Center, including its move into Younker Pit.

“[The students] wanted more ownership, more say in running the SRC,” Slick said about the changes the SRC has gone through in the five years she has worked for Intercultural Affairs.

Lester Alemán ’07 and other students pushed for restructuring the SRC and its resources. This led to the current system of three student leaders of the SRC and a staff advisor, a position Slick has held for the last few years.

Slick also served as a mentor for L.A. Posse 5 during their first two years at Grinnell.

“I met her during my senior year of high school and her duties during the first two years were mainly to help us transition from being a high school student to being a college student,” said Rosal Chavira ’11, one of Slick’s Posse scholars.

Although the mentorship officially ends after the second year, Slick and the Posse 5 continue to be close.

“I am really glad and excited to be here and be part of their graduation ceremony and seeing them off into the world,” Slick said. “We have developed friendships that have lasted all four year.”

Five years ago when Slick was offered the position at Grinnell, she was also accepted into a social work program. She favored Grinnell over graduate school, but now she is ready for a change and to continue her own education.

“I really want to see [my Posse] graduate and this is what is happening and I am ready to go on, experience other challenges and move into a different direction.” Slick said. “I’ve really come to the point where I want to go back for my seconds master’s degree.”