We’ll post key notices and updates on DAC activities in this space.
On Monday, December 7, the DAC held a professional development workshop for SOE faculty and staff. Its goal was to build common language, understanding, and self-awareness surrounding anti-Black racism and honoring Black lives—the focus of the DAC's 2020-21 efforts.
Three members of the DAC facilitated the workshop: Dr. Darin Earley, Dr. Maia Hoskin, and Dr. Ariane White. They established communication rules at the outset and then led the group through a series of exercises that illuminated how both overt and covert anti-Black racism dehumanizes Black people, repudiates their experiences, and undermines progress for people of all races.
The workshop was the first of three that the DAC is planning for the 2020-21 academic year.
In the DAC’s first year of existence, we have decided to focus on anti-Black racism. We believe that such a focus is critical and central to ending racism against all Black, Indigenous, and Other People of Color (BIPOC).
The DAC worked in consultation with SOE leadership to develop a plan to address anti-Black racism within SOE. Based on the information reviewed (see below), we identified the following priorities:
- Professional development for all SOE faculty and staff on topics such as diversity, equity, inclusion, equitable teaching practices, implicit bias, micro- and macroaggressions, and anti-racist behaviors
- Speaker series focused on anti-Black racism, sponsored by SOE, to occur during Spring 2021 and integrated into courses
- Coordination of The Pride alumni mentoring program for SOE students through LMU Career and Professional Development
- Expand SOE’s definition of social justice to more explicitly outline our commitment to combating anti-Black racism and other insidious forms of oppression
- Support targeted opportunity hires to increase overall diversity and representation of SOE students and communities, with a focus on increasing the number of Black tenure-line faculty members
- Develop policies, protocols, and guidelines to inform SOE processes such as committee membership, workload, and resource allocation
- Enhance SOE’s ability to respond promptly and meaningfully to current events
- Develop SOE students, staff, and faculty surveys to understand experiences and identify initiatives
The above priorities were informed by the following documents and data, with primary attention given to the experiences of SOE graduate students and alumni:
- Actions “Beyond Words”: The Black Faculty and Staff Association’s Response and Challenge to LMU President Timothy Law Snyder, Ph.D.
- #BlackatLMU Undergraduate Student Demands
- Black Graduate Student Demands
- Letter from Alumni of SOE’s Doctoral Program
- SOE Open Forum Themes from June 2020
- Results of SOE Student Survey, administered from August to September 2020
The DAC is leading the SOE in an equity audit to critically examine institutional policies, practices, and procedures through an anti-racist lens. This data-driven process will identify patterns of inequity in SOE, from recruitment, first points of contact, and admissions through graduation, alumni engagement, and employment. Recognizing that educational institutions inadvertently replicate patterns of systemic and structural racism, the equity audit will examine:
- Achievement Equity (e.g., enrollment, GPA, persistence, degree conferrals, credential recommendations, and employment)
- Programmatic Equity (e.g., DEI course content, grants and scholarships, awards and recognitions, procedures for reporting discrimination)
- Faculty & Staff Equity (e.g., representative of students and communities served, hiring and retention, leadership, salary and compensation)
Based on the findings, SOE leadership and the DAC will take the following steps:
- Identify areas of strength
- Implement interventions in areas for significant growth
- Set clear and measurable goals
- Develop a metric for measuring progress
- Establish procedures for ongoing data collection
- Communicate with all SOE stakeholders to ensure accountability