Pre-Conference Workshops

Thursday, March 28, 2:00–5:00 p.m. 

Separate registration and fee required ($125 members; $195 non-members); seating will be limited, so register early.  

Workshop 1: Managing Diversity in Community Colleges – The Emerging Role of the Chief Diversity Officer
The position of Chief Diversity Officer (CDO) continues to advance in visibility and importance in higher education. An increasing number of community and technical colleges have adopted executive level positions to further this work. Changing campus demographics, policy and legislative adjustments, the globalization of higher education, and increasing attention to civility and social justice needs make this work an essential consideration for all colleges. This interactive workshop will feature the thoughts, perceptions, and scholarship of six high level diversity professionals, who will share their voices and expertise. The presenters will provide insight into how they manage their departments while navigating the multi-faceted realms of diversity, inclusion, and equity at their respective campuses. Participants will learn models of practice and strategies to promote and implement equity at all levels. While this pre-conference is geared towards diversity professionals in the community college setting, it is open to all that may benefit.
Sharon Bland, Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer—Montgomery College; Clyde Pickett, Chief Diversity Officer—Minnesota State System; Kenny Yarbrough, Chief Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Officer—University of Wisconsin – Whitewater; Primrose Igonor, Diversity and Inclusion Coordinator—Marion Technical College; Lucía Nuñez, Vice President, Equity, Inclusion, and Community Engagement—Madison College; and (moderator) Kevin A. Christian, Director, Diversity, Inclusion and Equity—American Association of Community Colleges

Workshop 2: Student Well-Being and the Equity Imperative
Academic research and campus practice—supported by Bringing Theory to Practice and others—have emphasized the importance of student well-being, not only as a condition of student success but also as a core goal of educating the whole student. In recent years, the importance of student well-being as an equity imperative has become more and more evident, often due to the advocacy and activism of students themselves. What does it mean to place support for student flourishing at the center of the equity agenda? What does it mean to place equity, diversity, and inclusion at the heart of our understanding of student well-being? This pre-conference workshop will explore both questions, with a focus on the experience and needs of students whose experience of marginality often undermines their success and thriving: students of color, first-generation students, low-income students, and adult working students.  It will combine research on student well-being and precarity, discussion of best practices, and reflection on what general commitments constitute a “well-being equity agenda.”  It will focus not only on issues of campus climate, community, and emotional support, but also on material needs—housing, food security, childcare—that low-income and working students often confront.
Tim Eatman, Inaugural Dean of the Honors Living-Learning Community—Rutgers University – Newark; Joselyn Schultz Lewis, Senior Associate Director for Inclusive Teaching and Learning Initiatives—Georgetown University; and Caitlin Salins, Executive Project Manager—Bringing Theory to Practice

Workshop 3: Building Bridges, Creating Allies: Confronting Questions of Privilege and Power in an Age of Polarization
In recent years, college and university campuses have experienced increasing tensions around issues involving diversity and inclusion, particularly around matters that impact or directly address race and ethnicity. Concomitantly, many of our campuses have also witnessed an increasing amount of often heated viewpoint polarization concerning these issues. This workshop’s discussions and activities will focus on ways in which we can create not only safe spaces, but also brave spaces in the classroom and across the campus community to engage in authentic, transparent, and meaningful dialogue. Participants will explore frameworks for pushing through discomfort to effect lasting, systemic, equity-minded, meaningful change for students and educators alike—and for the citizenry as a whole.  Discussion will address how to overcome barriers to meaningful, authentic dialogue and address issues of privilege, power, and inequity without alienating, blaming, or shaming students. 
Shai Butler, Vice President for Student Success and Engagement—The College of Saint Rose and Richard Prystowsky, Vice President of Academic Affairs and Student Services—Marion Technical College

Workshop 4: VALUEing Student Learning Outcomes Connected to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
In order to be prepared for life, work, and citizenship, all students need to have experience engaging with individuals from backgrounds that differ from their own, and these experiences should be linked to learning outcomes. Student learning outcomes related to diversity transcend disciplines and departments, and they should be integrated into student learning from the first year through the final year. How do you identify diversity-focused learning outcomes and integrate them into curricular and co-curricular activities? Using the global learning, intercultural knowledge and competence, and civic engagement VALUE rubrics, this workshop will provide space to explore diversity-focused learning outcomes—for experiences in local and global contexts—and activities to integrate them into your course, program, or experience on or off campus. Participants will leave with a better understanding of diversity-focused learning outcomes and specific action items to take back to their institutions.
Kate McConnell, Assistant Vice President for Research and Assessment, and Dawn Michele Whitehead, Senior Director for Global Learning and Curricular Change and Interim Senior Director, Communications—AAC&U

Workshop 5: Embedding Equity through the Practice of Real Talk 
Two common themes discussed on college campuses at all organizational levels are equity and student success. A question that all institutions face is how to better prepare faculty to address these issues in the classroom. Based on the presenters book, The Pedagogy of Real Talk: Engaging, Teaching, and Connecting with Students at Risk (2015), this workshop will addresses issues of student success and belonging for all students in the classroom. Drawing on his own experiences and his extensive work with K-12 and college students, Hernandez has developed a pedagogical approach he describes as “real talk” - an instructor-led discussion surrounding a series of broad, engaging themes that motivate student-oriented outcomes, created to establish connections, understanding, trust, empathy and caring for one another. In this workshop Hernandez will share his story and discuss how his pedagogical innovations can be adapted for use with students in the college classroom (with a particular focus on low-income, first generation, and male students).  The workshop will pay particular attention to how his approach can be applied in any college classroom.
Paul Hernandez, Author—The Pedagogy of Real TalkJacob Price, Biology Professor—Amarillo Community College; and Mario Mireles, Biology Professor—Amarillo Community College