Shanitra Cheff

To meet more fully the needs of Concordia University Ann Arbor’s growing number of students of color, the university created the Office of Multicultural Engagement and appointed a director who is a known name at Concordia.

Shanitra Cheff accepted the position of Director of the Office of Multicultural Engagement and will oversee the formation of the office. Reporting to the Vice President of Administration, Rev. Dr. Ryan Peterson, Cheff, who has been the assistant cheer coach for the co-ed and stunt teams since 2016, will coordinate programs that educate, engage, and embrace students of different ethnic and diverse backgrounds so that all students have a richer campus experience and are better prepared for service and leadership after graduation.

“I am elated about this new adventure and opportunity to serve our students,” said Cheff. “I believe it is our responsibility to prepare our students to go out into the world after graduation and engage in tough conversations over a diverse group of meaningful topics knowledgeably and confidently.“

As director, Cheff will:

  • Conduct a campus needs assessment in the areas of multicultural student engagement.
  • Serve as an advocate and mentor to students from underrepresented populations.
  • Create an advisory council of stakeholders representing students, faculty, and staff.

The positive impact that the Office of Multicultural Engagement will have on the entire campus will be palpable.

According to Peterson, “We are thrilled to announce Shanitra as the Director of this important office.  As a university, we are committed to serving all students and engaging them in meaningful conversations and experiences that enrich their lives and the lives of those whom they interact with daily.  Our campus will be stronger because of Shanitra’s leadership and love for our students.”

Cheff earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Early Childhood Administration from Purdue University Global and is working towards a Master in Higher Education degree from the same institution. She and her husband, Louie, and their one-year-old daughter, Reagan, live in Waterford, Mich.

“In everything in life I walk by my faith,” said Cheff. “As a mother, as a wife, as a coach, and as a mentor I make intentional decisions based on where God leads me.”

For more information, contact

—Photography by Allie Milot (’21)

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