Following up on the series of six conversations we had this summer, we are starting new monthly discussions on racism, diversity, and inclusion this fall. As before, they will be facilitated by Adam Foley of the Office of Equity and Inclusion, and will be accompanied by some short readings/video to consider ahead of time.

The goal is to help us develop an improved and more nuanced understanding of racism, and in particular, how it plays out in the College workplace and educational activities, and what we can do to become more anti-racist. Open, honest, and respectful discussion is encouraged. Note that those interested in engaging in College diversity and inclusion efforts now should engage with the four College diversity committees and/or see the website for other recommended actions. We can continue to develop those recommended actions during the discussions as well.

Scheduled sessions:

 October  14th:  1-2 pm

We will get to know each other through the thought-provoking game, We’re not really strangers.

October 28th:  1-2 pm

  • Watch this short, powerful Buzzfeed video featuring a privilege walk. See how privilege shows up differently for this group of co-workers. Note: this video may be triggering for some people of color. (4 min video)
  • Listen to or read this NPR story introducing the concept of White Fragility
  • Review this list of 28 common racist attitudes and behaviors that indicate a detour or wrong turn into white guilt, denial or defensiveness

November 11th:  1-2 pm

  • Read a blog post by Cynthia Silva Parker, an advocate for equity and justice, which gives an overview of four levels of racism and the need for a systemic approach to seeing and addressing oppression
  • Watch this video to see how systemic racism has been affecting income inequality for over a century
  • Watch this quick video which explains the school-to-prison pipeline. Out of school suspensions have doubled since the 1970’s and continue to increase even though juvenile crimes have continued to drop.

December 2nd:  10-11 am

  • Read this article from The Harvard Business Review discussing the importance of achieving racial equity in the workplace and the challenges that come with that commitment
  • Take a look at this guide to help you understand more about what being an ally means and how to decenter yourself as a white person.
  • Check out this quick video titled, “Turn Performative Wokeness Into Allyship” with Layla Saad, author, speaker & teacher on the topics of race, identity, leadership, personal transformation & social change.
  • Watch this video about the difference between being non-racist and antiracist.  It asks that you take action and work against racism wherever you find it including, and perhaps most especially, in yourself.
  • Watch What’s wrong with saying “all lives matter”? ABC10 anchor Chris Thomas explains.

For all discussions:

Zoom link:;

Phone one-tap: US: +13126266799,,97707981401# or +16468769923,,97707981401#

Big thank you to Adam Foley for helping to organize this!

If you missed some of the session from the summer or want to review the supporting materials, see below:

The goal is to help us develop an improved and more nuanced understanding of racism, and in particular, how it plays out in the College workplace and educational activities. While open discussion is encouraged, to provide some stepping off points, we have included short readings/videos to consider ahead of time. The first two meetings were broadly focused on individual awareness (e.g., white privilege, identity, intersectionality, impacts of oppression).

July 15, 2020 (2-3 pm)
Group Awareness – Workplace/Academia
For discussion: How #BlackInTheIvory put a spotlight on racism in academia and

July 29, 2020 (2-3 pm)
Group Awareness – Workplace/Academia
For discussion: “Infusing a multicultural approach to education in the engineering and science curriculum.” Click Download Paper link on this website.

August 12, 2020 (2-3 pm)
Macro/Societal Awareness
For discussion: The Meritocracy Myth

August 26, 2020 (2-3 pm)
Macro/Societal Awareness; What should we as COE faculty and staff do next?
For discussion: Click on Strategic Plan links on COE Diversity and Inclusion website

Additional background resources to read/view: