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CTI Celebrates Local Black Leaders of Excellence ~ Maria McDuffie Clark

Maria McDuffie Clark

Nominated and written by Zarais German-George, Youth Navigator, Housing and Homeless Services at CTI

CTI is honored to recognize the Assistant Director of Multicultural Affairs at UMass Lowell, Kids in Tech-Board Chair, Maria McDuffie Clark, during Black History Month for their exemplary dedication to the community.

Maria McDuffie Clark has called Lowell their home since moving from North Carolina to pursue their master’s at UMass Lowell in Community Social Psychology, where they focused on learning the steps to develop civic engagement projects and systematically build community as well as analyze psychological trends that enhance positive social change. During their practicum at UMass Lowell, they served as the African Cultural Club advisor in the Multicultural Center at Middlesex Community College. There, Maria was inspired to use creative solutions to empower students to serve domestically and globally.

After connecting their passion with higher education and social justice, Maria served two years as a member of AmeriCorps Volunteer In Service To America (VISTA) with Massachusetts Campus Compact (MACC). In their second year of service, Maria took on the role of Co-VISTA Leader, supporting 25 VISTAs placed at universities in Massachusetts, leveraging campus resources to partner with community organizations. After their VISTA service, they worked at MCC as the Multicultural & International Student Services Coordinator, guiding diverse students through the enrollment process and engaging students in co-curricular activities centered around identity development and exploration of other identities.

To Maria, Black History Month means expressing a complex history within the U.S. and honoring those who have paved the way. When asked what can the community do more of to recognize Black History Month during the year, they stated, “Learn, unlearn, and then learn again! It’s not enough to attend events just this month. Please learn more about Black History to get a sense of where we can be in the future”.

We are grateful for Maria’s passion in giving back to the community and we thank them for creating leaders along the way.

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