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The 2019 Diversity Conference session descriptions will be available mid-February, 2019.


 

2018 Diversity Conference Session Descriptions

 

Session 1: 9:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
What is Intersectionality?  Exploring Social Identities Using the Tapestry Model

Presented by: Bev Walker - Office of Access and Inclusion

In this session, Intersectionality will be introduced and explored within the environmental contexts of the facilitator and participants. (Opportunities for a safe/brave space will be provided.) There will be partner, small group, as well as some large group discussion regarding social identities and the role that they play in our everyday lives. After moving into how our social identities intersect, the Tapestry Model (adapted from Dr. Diane Goodman) will be used to explore those intersections of race and racism with other social identities. This model can be used as a way to explain focal aspects of intersectionality. It can also be used as a tool to explore one's own as well as others' special identities and realities. We will begin to think about how intersectionality affects us as professionals and how it affects the populations that we serve within our various roles on campus and/or within our communities.

Paralympic Skill Lab: Sharing the Vision of Inclusive Physical Activity in KIN 100

Presented by: Cathy McKay - Department of Kinesiology

This session will showcase the power of listening to the voices and words of Paralympic athletes and athletes with physical disabilities. The KIN 100 Paralympic Skill Lab (PSL) program, currently in year three at JMU, will be introduced, with a focus on how JMU students have grown through engagement with athletes with disabilities, and how the PSL has shifted the paradigm through which JMU students view disability. In addition, Allport's Contact Theory will be covered, which is easily transferable to all areas of education and community living, and which advances a more inclusive and tolerant society. Teaching, scholarship, and service endeavors related to disability sport will be shared.

Deep Learning about Inclusive Leadership for Sustainable Peace?

Presented by: Ed Brantmeier - Center for Faculty Innovation and the Department of Learning, Technology, and Leadership Education & Destin Webb - Integrated Science and Technology major

How do we promote a paradigm of deep learning focused on inclusive leadership for sustainable peace?  As part of their learning journey, co-learners in an undergraduate course in the United States defined inclusive leadership as "creating a collaborative environment in which all concerned parties feel understood and empowered to participate" and sustainable peace as "a state of global relationships where individuals, groups, and societies are enabled to be fully happy and well." Students studied non-Western leaders to understand their core values, leadership approaches, and how these global leaders navigated barriers and opportunities to sustainable peace.  In addition, students visited and engaged in service learning at local community organizations dedicated to aspects of sustainable development-healthy ecosystems, social equity, and viable economies.  This interactive presentation will explore the foundational course questions, learning goals, methods, and learning impact on students in this course.

What Color is My Communication

Presented by: Gail Napora - Talent Development

Get up, move around, put yourself on a spectrum a half dozen times, and then engage in an activity where you experience and explore cultural differences in communication in a low-stress way by playing to a role and communicating with others who are playing other roles. Have fun while learning more about communication differences for cultures you may or may not yet understand. The color activity is drawn from the book Cross Cultural Competence: A Field Guide for Developing Global Leaders and Managers by Simon L. Dolan and Kristine Marin Kawamura. After moving about, catch your breath during a fast review of The Lewis Model of cultural behaviors that will provide you with a framework for interacting with individuals of different geographic origin.

Intergenerational Intersections that Expand the Human Experience

Presented by: Kathy Guisewite - College of Health and Behavioral Studies in the Institute for Innovation in Health and Human Services

How often do we perceive our aging population as a 'voice of diversity' and how might we better envision and practice healthy models of inclusion with those who are older?  In this session, we will explore current understandings about growing older and the topics of dementia, Alzheimer’s Disease, and the multifaceted experience of caregiving. We will explore the benefits of engaging students in vital, service-oriented work with those who are 60 years old and older and how this work is building bridges of inclusion and purpose. We will also discuss the history and creation of the Caregivers Community Network which is a course that trains and offers credit to students as they extend respite to caregivers of seniors who are frail or cognitively impaired. Both student and family perspectives will be offered.

Lessons from being an International Student at JMU

Presented by: Kristen Shrewsbury - JMU Learning Centers & international student panel

JMU International student panelists who also work in the Center for Global Engagement, English Language Learner Services, and International Study Center share personal reflections about the unique intersection of being an international student working to support fellow international students on campus. Panelists will offer recommendations for faculty and staff to encourage authentic integration of international students. The presentation will complement panelists' narratives with research findings that extend suggestions for faculty and staff. In addition to learning about these dedicated student professionals, the panelists will answer questions from the audience to address specific concerns or ideas.

Diversifying the Historical Record through JMU Special Collections

Presented by: Malia Willey, Brian Flota and Kate Morris - JMU Libraries & Educational Technologies

This panel discussion will explore efforts by librarians and archivists to diversify holdings in Special Collections at JMU Libraries & Educational Technologies and will share how we are engaging the JMU community with these collections. Special Collections are repositories of historical materials that help shape our understanding of the past. To create a more inclusive historical record, we have begun to intentionally address gaps in our collections and services. Many of our initial efforts have focused on African American culture, representation, and local history. We also hold a growing collection of oral histories that document the experiences of historically marginalized groups in the Shenandoah Valley. Several of these collections have been integrated into coursework and promoted through community-wide programming. The panel will be organized to allow for questions and discussion.

Beyond Sombreros, Chopsticks and Hijabs: Breaking Down Outdated Constructions of Diversity & Culture

Presented by: Ruthie Bosch - Department of Educational Foundations & Exceptionalities

This session will present a new thematic framework for teaching diversity and new conceptions of culture that challenges students to: 1) assess how their socio-cultural socialization has an impact on their identity; 2) examine how socialization and intersectionality affect their perceptions of privilege and non-privilege in their own lives and the lives of others; 3) recognize and analyze how socialization influences their beliefs, attitudes and behaviors; 4) acknowledge and deconstruct the prejudices, stereotypes and biases inherent in their varied socializations; and 5) construct new perspectives of diversity and culture that support a meaningful and meaningful life.  Participants will engage in activities (I Am Many Cultures; My Beliefs, Attitudes & Behaviors Bag; My Cognitive Blinks: Perceptions & Categorizations) that can be used in a variety of courses to break down outdated constructions of diversity and culture that may hinder students’ ability to become engaged and responsive global citizens. 

JMU Task Force on Inclusion

Presented by:  Sonya Baker - College of Visual and Performing Arts, Jenn Phillips - Athletics Compliance, and members of the Task Force on Inclusion

This academic year, President Alger established a task force to help facilitate thoughtful dialogue, analysis and reflection across the entire campus regarding issues of inclusion (in all aspects, including issues such as race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, disabilities, etc.) both in and outside the classroom.  In this session, members of the task force will provide an update on their work so far and invite participants to provide input and feedback to the different working groups of the task force.

Session 2: 10:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Appreciating Religious Diversity and Worldview Identity Development in the Undergraduate Context

Presented by: Benjamin Selznick - School of Strategic Leadership Studies and Emily Gravett - Center for Faculty Innovation

The purpose of this interdisciplinary presentation is to introduce scholarship, practices and language connected to understanding religious diversity and worldview identity development in undergraduate contexts. We will initially position worldview identity – which can, but need not include, self-identification with a religious tradition – with respect to intersectional approaches to identity. We will then present existing and original research from our fields of study (postsecondary education, religious studies) on how curricular approaches and co-curricular features of the college environment can actively promote or hinder students’ development of their own worldviews, their attitudes toward pluralism, and their expressed appreciation for religious diversity. We will close by inviting constructive discussion on the importance of emphasizing productive and empathetic exchanges across lines of worldview difference in the college community and beyond.

The Risk of Diversity and Inclusion in Higher Education

Presented by: Cheryl Beverly - Department of Learning, Technology & Leadership Education

Diversity…Access…Equity…Inclusion. What are they?  How are they done?  In this presentation we will expand our conversation to explore the complexity and intersectionality of these terms.  We will also identify and explore some of the risks and benefits to integrating diversity and inclusion/access in Higher Education... for its students, staff, faculty, administrators, and the institution.  We can use our expanded understanding to inform our institutional and professional decision making.

It'll Never Work!: Transforming Voices of Exclusion through Universal Design, Collaboration, and Respectful Listening

Presented by: Christina Wulf, Brennan Maupin, and Bryant Leonard - Office of Disability Services

Although the JMU community shares an ethical commitment to inclusion, some voices—usually unintentionally—cause exclusion.  For people with disabilities, this can result in a lack of access to the physical campus, to materials and teaching techniques used in the classroom, to computer content, etc.  A lack of access silences voices; it shuts off channels of communication and ends conversation. This workshop gives participants the opportunity to listen to each other and actively seek inclusion by engaging with scenarios and considering how they personally might respond to accessibility challenges. We will present scenarios that are loosely based on real situations at JMU and emphasize transferable elements that faculty and staff can apply in their professional lives. Our basic message is that collaboration, listening, and willingness to be creative form the core of dealing with accessibility challenges and are also key parts of interacting respectfully and joyfully within a diverse community.

Building Coalitions for Diversity and Inclusion

Presented by: Daisy Breneman - Department of Justice Studies and members of the CFI fellowship

In this panel, members of a Center for Faculty Innovation Career fellowship designed to explore diversity dialogue processes will share stories and insights, as well as offer participants opportunities to explore ways to build coalitions, improve communication around diversity, create intentional spaces for listening to diverse perspectives,  recognize and address existing barriers to access and inclusion, and offer outreach and support to others.  Using an intersectional, coalition-based approach, we will focus not on particular identities, but rather on the connected web of barriers, as well as the incredible potential for addressing barriers by working together.  We also emphasize faculty-led, collaborative grassroots approaches that complement the university administration’s diversity and inclusion efforts. We will emphasize the value of sharing stories and developing shared perspectives on diversity, as well as moving beyond words to directly address barriers to full access, inclusion, and participation on the JMU campus. 

Anti-Racist Teaching

Presented by: Katie Dredger - Department of Early Elementary & Reading Education

In what ways do James Madison University faculty members engage in anti-racist teaching? In what ways do the systems at JMU offer access to equity and the most positive learning environments for all of our students? How can faculty support each other in productive conversations and actions that disrupt racist and sexist systems? What texts are available for students to read and for our own growth that can support anti-racist and teaching? In this session, participants will attempt to answer some of these questions in intersectional ways as they move from thinking of ways of being anti-racist instead of just non-racist. When we care to consciously check our implicit biases, we might make fewer mistakes that can hurt our students and their achievement. This sharing environment will inform and enlighten as we all work to know better and do better.

Voices from the Closet: Using Stories to Open Doors for LGBTQIAP+ Youth

Presented by: Karen Myers - Department of Social Work and Kathy Evans - Education Department, Eastern Mennonite University

While there has been marked change related to LGBTQIAP+ equality within the past few years, the systematic silencing of those on the margins is no less intense. This is particularly true for LGBTQIAP+ youth who are coming out in families, schools, and faith communities where intolerance and violence remain structurally supported. This workshop will use narratives of LGBTQIAP+ youth to give voice to their lived experiences. Within their stories, participants will hear their pain and resilience. This workshop acknowledges that sexual orientation and gender expression are but two aspects of youth identity and that the complexities of coming out are layered with other factors such as race, immigration status, religion, class, and ability. After providing information about particular risk factors and challenges faced by LGBTQIAP+ youth, we will explore ways of promoting greater social inclusion and access to services in order to support more positive youth development.

Teaching Cultural Confidence in a Nursing Curriculum

Presented by: Linda Sobel, Joy Harnage, and Erica Metzler Sawin - School of Nursing

In 2016 the JMU School developed standardized clinical simulations to provide students with an opportunity to experience situations similar to what they may encounter in their future practices. The simulations were designed to help students achieve increased cultural awareness and sensitivity.  This session will include a review of the process of collaboration of more than 12 Nursing faculty to develop four clinical simulations focusing on language facilitation, religion and spirituality, disabilities, and sexual orientation. The simulation process including relevant pre-simulation content, the simulation script, debriefing, and evaluation will be presented. The research process for assessing the influence of the simulations on developing cultural confidence for caring for a diverse patient and family population with de discussed.

Inclusion through Play and Citizen Diplomacy

Presented by: Smita Mathur and Maryam Sharifian - Department of Early Elementary & Reading Education

Notions of social justice, compassion, and empathy are regularly communicated through art, music, theater, poetry, dance, and other playful activities. Citizen diplomacy, much like play builds strong relationships that contribute to peace and stability in communities. Citizen diplomats provide avenues to solve social problems, build leadership, and engage in building and sustaining our communities. However, currently citizen diplomacy has been used to forge relationships between countries and cultures. Can we use the same principles of play and citizen diplomacy to build peace and harmony within our local communities? Can we develop a coalition of citizen diplomats that organize opportunities for community-play while simultaneously creating strong inclusive communities?  Participants will consider ways to empower themselves to act in purposefully as citizen diplomats at the local, national, and international stage. We hope to co-create local strategies that leverage playfulness and principles of citizen diplomacy to develop a healthy response to hate, bigotry and violence.

Diversity Through Internationalization: Fulbright, INU, and More

Presented by: David Owusu-Ansah - Department of History & Office of Access and Inclusion,  Ed Brantmeier - Center for Faculty Innovation and the Department of Learning, Technology, and Leadership Education, Jennifer Coffman and Lee Sternberger - Center for Global Engagement

International education happens in many ways.  It certainly includes what we do when we lead study abroad programs or participate in international learning exchanges, but it also includes the variety of ways in which we broach subjects of global importance within our classrooms, through our assignments, and via our engagement with our colleagues around the globe.  International education, therefore, is committed to issues of diversity — by opening our minds to different worldviews and practices and making these tangible to others, we better prepare ourselves for productive global citizenry.  In this session, our panel will talk about opportunities to work with and potentially be Fulbright Scholars, participate in the International Network of Universities’ Shadowing Program, explore International Association of Universities opportunities, and more.

Diversity & Inclusion for Leaders

Presented by: Dr. Damon Williams

Dr. Damon Williams is one of the foremost authors, speakers and researchers around leading successful diversity and inclusion initiatives. He has served as a chief diversity officer and has led national initiatives on this topic. Come learn key strategic methodologies for successful campus engagement, leadership on diversity and inclusion, and how to create effective initiatives on your campus.

Session 3: 1:45 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
How accessible are the libraries?  Development, Outcomes, and Next Stages of the 2017/18 Audit

Presented by: K.T. Vaughan - JMU Libraries & Educational Technologies

JMU's Carrier Library may be one of the most popular study and hangout spots on campus, but how accessible is it? How can we work to improve Carrier's accessibility? We developed and tested an accessibility audit instrument to identify areas of strength and need. This session will present findings and talk about how the libraries are working to redefine access and accessibility in the physical environment. Your voice is welcome to help co-construct an idea of library as third place that is accessible and inclusive for all students, faculty, and staff.

Addressing Issues Faced by Transgender Students in Residence Life at JMU: Ethical Decision-Making in Action

Presented by: Breyette Covington - Department of Health Sciences and students

This hands-on workshop, Addressing Issues Faced by Transgender Students in Residence Life at JMU: Ethical Decision-Making in Action, addresses the need for communication around ethical issues and how it can be a source of power and strength for creating an environment of inclusiveness for transgendered students in higher education.   This workshop features a panel of students, who authored an original ethics scenario and accompanying professional development materials for JMU faculty and staff, and is moderated by the lead author, an Instructor of JMU’s HTH 423:  Ethics and Critical Thinking in Health.   

Voicing the Diversity of Latinx Experiences of College Recruitment and Retention

Presented by: Carlos Aleman - School of Communication Studies and students

The effectiveness of some "best practices" and strategies for recruiting and retaining Hispanic students in institutions of higher education can be critically examined. This multi-media session presents a diversity of voices from high school and college students who self-identity as Latinx, as they reflect on their sense of identities and the effectiveness of recruitment and retention efforts of 4-year public institutions. The session will include short film narratives of local high school students of Harrisonburg's Scholars' Latino Initiative, as well as reflections from students of Blue Ridge Community College and JMU. Attending faculty and staff will have an opportunity to listen to and engage themes of diversity, security, and inclusion-related matters experienced by university practices.

Can You Hear Me? Communication Across the Generations

Presented by: Jennifer Campfield - Talent Development

With four generations in the workplace and a fifth generation on the way, it's not surprising that communication remains a top workplace issue identified by numerous business leaders as well as by participants in the JMU Talent Development Annual Survey. Ineffective communication can lead to poor work results or missed deadlines, and it can cause people to feel disrespected or unappreciated. This workshop will provide participants with an opportunity to learn about different communication preferences and approaches to make sure every generation can be included in the conversation.  In this workshop, participants will: Identify the different generations currently in the workplace, Examine generational differences in communication preferences and approaches to work, Explore techniques for improving communication across generations.

Meaningful Access and Inclusion: Reflections on Year 1 of the Disability Studies Minor at JMU

Presented by:  Joshua Pate - Hart School of Hospitality, Sport, and Recreation Management, Susan Ghiaciuc - School of Writing, Rhetoric and Technical Communication, Daisy Breneman - Department of Justice Studies, Kerry Dobransky - Department of Socialogy and Anthropoloogy, Valerie Schoolcraft - Office of Disability Servces, and Matt Trybus - Learning Centers

The purpose of this panel session is to enhance campus inclusion and awareness of disability experiences by giving life to the voices behind the Disability Studies minor at JMU. This panel discussion will feature the minor’s steering committee, instructors, and enrolled students leading a discussion of disability inclusion on JMU’s campus, why the Disability Studies minor was established, how the minor establishes a vision of inclusion for students, and the experiences of enrolled students. Panelists will reflect on the first year of the Disability Studies minor at JMU, and speak to the vital role of disability in conversations about diversity. The panel discussion can help attendees develop awareness, knowledge, and professional skills related to disability and inclusion in academic settings, professional work, and personal lives through sharing the experiences of establishing the minor as well as the experiences of students enrolled in the minor.

Diversity Matters: As Told by AHRD Alumni

Presented by: Noorie Brantmeier - Adult Education/Human Resource Development Graduate Program and Kayce Croy - Office of Residence Life

Considering that we live and work in a world of rapidly shifting demographics and are more connected to those around the globe than ever before, diversity education is more relevant than ever. Alumni of the Adult Education and Human Resource Development (AHRD) graduate program often become organizational leaders and supervisors, tasked with helping to foster inclusive workplace environments and advocate for diversity. To best prepare current and future graduate students for this reality, hearing the voices of alumni will allow faculty and staff to learn from current alumni experiences and build toward more promising approaches for teaching and learning about issues of diversity. Therefore, data collected from this study focuses on alumni conceptions of diversity, what inclusivity looks like in the workplace, the prevalence and types of diversity training received post-graduation, as well as their insights regarding ways their graduate education could have been strengthened.

Voices of Diversity: Stories from the Practicum Experiences with Migrant Education Students

Presented by: Katya Koubek - Department of Educational Foundations & Exceptionalities, Katie Manning and Aaron Snook - graduate students

This presentation demonstrates how the TESOL graduate program at JMU incorporates action research in its introductory language acquisition course, and how preservice and in-service teachers apply the principals of action research to their respected practice settings. In this session, the instructor of the course will share the principles and steps of action research and how she scaffolds it into her course while two of her MAT students will present their action research findings and implications from working with Shenandoah migrant education students. Conducting action research empowers preservice and in-service teachers by helping them reflect on their teaching practices with the ultimate goal of improving their teaching and student learning.

Including Students with Intellectual Disability in Postsecondary Education Institutions

Presented by: Laura Desportes and Kerrie Heilman - Department of Educational Foundations & Exceptionalities, Allison Bright, Kayten Stroop - Shenandoah County Public Schools and postgraduate special education students with intellectual disability and/or autism

Our session will present information on post-graduate college programs for young adults with intellectual disabilities across the United States, preliminary findings of an interest assessment to explore starting such a program at JMU, and a panel discussion and presentation of post-graduate special education students from Shenandoah County who have been coming down to experience college life with JMU student partners on Friday mornings for the last 3 and ½ years.  We will discuss how such a program might be configured, how it will improve outcomes for young adults with disabilities, and how it will enhance the diversity of the JMU community. The panel will consist of Shenandoah County teachers and post-grad SPED students, JMU students and faculty, and a former classmate of our Shenandoah partners who is now completing her JMU SPED student teaching there.

Voices of Resilience: Success stories of minority-status first-generation female college students

Presented by:  Stephanie Wasta - Department of Educational Foundations & Exceptionalities and Imane Zirari - M.Ed. graduate student

This session will summarize the findings from a qualitative research study that explored the resilience factors of minority-status first-generation female college students. The study examined the experiences of two minority-status FGCS females who identify as Latina and Black. Specifically, this case analysis revealed challenges these students experienced in transitioning from a predominantly minority-status high school to a predominantly White university (PWI), resilience mechanisms used to enroll in college, and resilience mechanisms used to stay in college.  Come to this session to learn more about these incredible women’s journeys, to challenge yourself to consider ways to use this information in your own realm of influence, and to engage in dialogue with others as we consider more appropriate ways to support and advocate for underrepresented groups at a college or university.

Almost Sunrise

Presented by:  Jennifer Taylor and Pete DeSmit - Veteran Scholars Task Force

Two hour movie: In the midst of a crisis, Almost Sunrise gives unprecedented access to the lives of two young men returning from war, prompting urgent and necessary national conversation about the way we treat war wounds. Your screening of Almost Sunrise is an opportunity to engage members of your community in a transformative and enriching experience that draws empathy and seeks to unify the civilian-military divide.  Note for participants:  This session includes viewing a full length film, followed by discussion.  NOTE: this session will run longer than 3:00p.m.

Faculty Recruitment Best Practices

Presented by: Dr. Damon Williams

This session is focused on creating effective recruitment and retention strategies for instructional faculty.  Dr. Williams has provided leadership as a chief diversity officer at the University of Wisconsin - Madison and as a consultant with a number of colleges and universities across the country.  Come ask questions and learn best practices for participating in creating an inclusive environment in your department.  NOTE: this session will start at 2:00 p.m.

Linking Meandering Paths - Art Exhibit and Opening Reception

Presented by: Sukjin Choi - School of Art, Design and Art History and Anna Westfall - Visual & Comminication Arts and Theater, Eastern Mennonite University

Korean-Americans Sukjin Choi and Anna Westfall explore the influences of different cultures on identity in the exhibition, Linking Meandering Paths. As sculptors and ceramists, Professor Choi and Professor Westfall create a visual manifestation of themes of identity that resonate in our global world. 

Exhibit hours: 10:00a.m.-4:00p.m.  Opening Reception: 3:00p.m. - 4:00p.m.  

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