Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

The Kresge Auditorium stage, bearing the inscription "Dedicated to the promotion of world friendship through the universal language of the arts."

We will embrace four key pillars in leading the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion work at Interlochen. These pillars will serve as a foundation for critical dialogues and deep engagement with topics that are uncomfortable but necessary to develop a culture of belonging on our campus.


As a destination for young artists, Interlochen is poised to cultivate artists whose impact will change the world. Our curriculum and educational programming provides students with resources to address inequalities in the arts world and beyond and to participate in civic engagement.

Vulnerability and Transparency

As a community, we will challenge ourselves to lean into our discomfort; and be “vulnerable and transparent” in activating campus wide change. As an incubator for worldwise friendship, we will acknowledge our blind spots and use these discussions to address and dismantle the walls of our differences.


As a community, we will remain vigilant and acknowledge that the journey towards creating an inclusive campus takes time. There will be bumps in the road, but we will travel this journey together. We will hold ourselves accountable with the understanding that if one of our community members is impacted, we are all impacted.


Through educating ourselves, engaging in transparent and vulnerable conversations, and holding ourselves accountable, we can transform Interlochen and the world. This is a slow and intentional and inclusive process that will require the work of students, faculty, staff and administrators. 

Recent Programs and Initiatives

The following is a list of Programs and Initiatives that have occurred so far: 

  • Conversation with Education Personnel about the Black at Interlochen movement
  • Conversation and Meeting with International Families
  • African Drum Circle and Beyoncé
  • Community Meeting on Xenophobia
  • Launch of the student affinity groups
  • A Conversation with Black Alumni about DEI at Interlochen
  • A Conversation with all Arts Academy Alumni about DEI at Interlochen
  • Unconscious bias training for all hiring managers
  • Celebration of Indigenous Art
  • Campus-wide common read and programming: Just Mercy
  • Celebration of Lunar New Year

DEI Team

Our talented DEI team is dedicated to cultivating a community of belonging.

Esther Triggs

Esther Triggs

Associate Director of Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion

231.276.7200 231.276.7200 esther.triggs@interlochen.org
Tifini McClyde

Tifini McClyde-Blythe

Associate Vice President
Human Resources

231.276.7342 231.276.7342 tifini.mcclyde@interlochen.org
Ellamarie Quimby

Ellamarie Quimby

Director of Residence Life

231.276.7550 231.276.7550 ellamarie.quimby@interlochen.org
Kalyn Rabuse

Kalyn Rabuse

International Student Services Manager

231.276.7524 231.276.7524 kalyn.rabuse@interlochen.org
Vester Waters

Vester Waters

Multicultural Recruitment Officer

231.276.7884 231.276.7884 vester.waters@interlochen.org

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion Updates