Despite the COVID-19 precautions that prevented us from holding in-person workshops and meetings, there was plenty of room for growth through some amazing virtual gatherings.
2021 Aspen Undergraduate Consortium on Business &
The Liberal Arts
In summer 2021, I was one of three faculty members on the Allegheny College team to participate in the "Racial & Economic Justice" pod, at the Aspen Institute's Business & Society virtual consortium on "Un-Distancing," which was co-hosted by Franklin & Marshall College; Freeman College of Management, Bucknell University; and The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. The 2021 Aspen Undergraduate Consortium on Business & the Liberal Arts included 130 participants from 44 schools; two of which were international (Edinburgh, Copenhagen). We had insightful and productive conversations on how to integrate Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) content and citizenship goals into a liberal arts business curriculum.
Liberal Arts Colleges Racial Equity Leadership Alliance (LACRELA)
It has also been a timely and enriching learning experience attending the LACRELA Zoom workshops hosted by the University of Southern California's "Race & Equity Center." LACRELA is a consortium that now boasts close to 70 colleges. Membership to LACRELA affords the college access to several resources, including the ability to send up to 8 participants (staff and faculty) to monthly virtual sessions on topics ranging from confronting explicit acts of racism and racial violence on campus, strategically hiring faculty of color, supporting and retaining faculty of color, strategically diversifying staff at all levels, and creating equitable pathways to leadership roles for employees of color, among others.
GLCA BIPOC Faculty Leadership Institute
Similarly, as part of the inaugural cohort of the BIPOC Faculty Leadership Council, organized by the Academic Leadership Institute at the Great Lakes Colleges Association (GLCA), I joined twenty-five faculty from eleven member institutions. During fall 2021, we brainstormed online about making the invisible labor by BIPOC faculty count on our campuses, and making DEI work more widely-shared as an institutional priority and mission.
The spring 2022 focus of the virtual meetings will be on “Supporting Diverse Students”.