Inclusive Community Building: A Fall 2021 Update

students sitting around tables smiling and talking

A Fall 2021 update from the School of Education's Director of Equity and Inclusion, Dr. Tammy Ellis-Robinson:

Greetings School of Education Community,

We are energized to start the new academic year with a focus on celebrating, validating and instituting awareness and prioritization of equity and inclusion across the School. The combined taskforce and climate committee will meet and address goals across the School. This focus aligns with the research, curriculum, and community efforts so many in the School and across the University hold dear. We will work together to foster community while attending to the needs, growth and connections of students, staff, faculty and our community neighbors and partners. The mission of the SOE’s office of Equity and Inclusion is to promote and facilitate the SOE’s efforts to create a school climate that fosters inclusion and diversity of faculty and staff, establishes equitable opportunities and experiences for faculty and students of all backgrounds, and provides guidance and consultation on issues related to increased cultural and social awareness in all educational endeavors. We will continue and grow many initiatives already established in the SOE such as the Faculty and Staff Book Club, Touhey Family Fellows Program, and the Division of Counseling Psychology’s Student Diversity Conference and more. We will unveil new ones including Decolonizing Syllabi Workshops. And, we will invite new ideas, initiatives, and innovations to become a part of our transformational approach to inclusive community building.

  • The School of Education Faculty and Staff Book Club has enjoyed three semesters of sharing and discussing texts engaging with deep considerations of social justice. This fall we will read Black Fatigue by Mary-Frances Winters.
    Black Fatigue book cover
  • The Touhey Family Fellows Mentoring Program welcomes 5 new mentors this fall to engage and connect with undergraduates interested in pursuing careers in education and mental health. We will feature their stories in an upcoming newsletter. The application for new fellows is available. Touhey Family Fellows Application fall2021
  • The Counseling Psychology annual Diversity Conference explores the diverse ways in which helping professionals across disciplines impact communities through action, research, and practice across local, national, and international contexts.  Over the years it has explored intersectionality and advocacy, marginalized communities, creating a climate of inclusion, culturally conscious research and practice, building bridges, privilege, barrier awareness, social justice and multiculturalism, and invisible identities, among others.
  • Equity in Transition Summit sponsored by the Division of Special Education engages stakeholders representing multiple perspectives in a problem solving discussion of issues of intersectionality for people with disabilities as they enter adulthood. This year’s summit on October 4, 2021 will focus on pilot and other innovative projects and research at various stages, designed to promote equity at the point of transition with particular focus on cultural awareness, combating deficit thinking, stereotype threat, and implicit bias. As always the summit focus will include the sharing of resources, knowledge, and perspective as we continue conversations in a network of partners to educate and advocate for holistic support and programming considering actionable collaborations.
  • Town Hall and Community Building discussions within the semester offer a place to come together to share our experiences, and our visions among faculty staff and students considering the community around us and the community we are building in the SOE.
  • ReSearch for Equity Symposia provide a space for researchers (faculty, community, students) focusing on any equity or inclusion topics to come together and share projects, ideas and provide input and ideas for one another.

Equity and Inclusion Programming in the School of Education
(events will be in Catskill Room 204 with a Zoom link option)

Town Hall: Equity and Social Justice in Education and Mental Health
  • 10/21/21, 12-1pm
  • 3/10/22, 12-1pm
Building a Beloved Community within the School of Education (student voices)
  • 11/18/21, 12-1pm
  • 4/14/22, 12-1pm
ReSearch for Equity Symposia
  • 11/29/21, 5-7pm
  • 5/2/22, 5-7pm
School of Education Book Club
  • 9/17/21, 1-2pm
  • 10/15/21, 1-2pm
  • 11/19/21, 1-2pm
  • 12/17/21, 1-2pm

The Decolonizing Syllabi Process Panel and Workshops via Zoom

This summer a committee of faculty met together to begin a collaborative process of recognizing, building, and sharing values of equity and inclusion in their syllabi. The process of “decolonizing” included interrogating the concept, considering the impact, and addressing a specific need highlighted through consideration of student experience. The committee invites instructors to hear about the journey so far and join in the collaborative effort to intentionally attend to the experiences in our classes.

A Panel Conversation 9/27/21, 10-11am
Collaborative Workshop Part 1 10/25/21, 10-11:30am
Collaborative Workshop Part 2 11/29/21, 10-11:30am