From Many, One

Graduate Division series seeks to promote campus conversations around diversity

UC Santa Barbara takes diversity seriously. As part of its commitment to the key role it plays in all aspects of the university’s endeavors, the Graduate Division organizes a series of multilevel programming to emphasize this core value.

“The Graduate Division is pleased to once again produce for the campus a set of engaging events around inclusion and diversity,” said Carol Genetti, dean of the division. “This programming is designed to raise awareness about implicit bias and provide strategies to advance equity and an inclusive climate. The goal is to enlarge the conversation and give people opportunities to learn and reflect.”

A pair of this fall’s events will include a Theater Delta Presentation, said Carlos Nash, director of graduate diversity programs in the Graduate Division.

“Two years ago Theater Delta performed as part of the Diversity Matters series,” Nash said, “which was well-received and led to a number of profound conversations amongst department chairs, faculty members and administrators. This year, Theater Delta is offering two new performances which will address climate issues and conflict in the classroom.”

“The Fall Events Toward an Inclusive Campus” series begins Friday, Oct. 11, from 9 to 10:30 a.m. in the Flying A Studios Room of the University Center with a breakfast discussion of the 2018 National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine’s Report on Sexual Harassment of Women. Geared toward graduate students and postdoctoral scholars, a panelist from NASEM will discuss key findings of the report.

“Can I Be of Any Help,” designed for faculty members, will be held Monday, Oct. 21, from 9:30 to 11 a.m. in the campus’s MultiCultural Center. A Theater Delta Presentation, the event will feature an interactive performance addressing conflicts rooted in racism, homophobia, classism and cultural appropriation as they may appear in the classroom. This performance emphasizes the role of the faculty member in setting the classroom climate and responding to social conflict.

“Are You Aware,” taking place Tuesday, Oct. 22, from either 9:30 to 11 a.m. or 2 to 3:30 p.m. in the MultiCultural Center, is intended for department chairs and members of faculty search committees. Also a Theater Delta Presentation, it will feature an interactive performance exploring how implicit bias (based on gender and race) influences the hiring of faculty in the campus community through its impact on candidate evaluation and selection, committee members and effective dialogue.

“Diversity in Graduate Education through Admissions Practices,” intended for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars, will be Wednesday, Oct. 30, from 1 to 3 p.m. in the Flying A Studios Room. Presented by professors Julie Posselt of USC and Casey Miller of the Rochester Institute of Technology, the presentation will introduce current research about equity and diversity in graduate education especially in STEM, as well as practical strategies for improving admissions and recruitment processes. Attendees will learn how common admissions mindsets and practices inhibit access for underrepresented groups, and will leave with concrete strategies to improve diversity and equity through the admissions process.

The Diversity Champions Lunch, on Thursday, Oct. 31, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Mosher Alumni Hall, is intended for faculty members who already have advanced understanding of diversity issues and who want to be engaged in advancing diversity at UC Santa Barbara. It will feature a discussion of how faculty members can be more effective change agents, what they need to be better supported in this work, and how the campus can more effectively implement transformative change.

“We are all at this academic institution to learn as much as we can and to expand our minds with new ideas,” Genetti said. “We can’t truly reach our potential as an institution of higher learning if we are excluding voices from the discussion. We have a shared responsibility to produce a climate that enables all of our community members to reach their full academic potential and professional success.”

Nash noted that the Graduate Division aims to engage all members of the campus with the series.

“Workshops and performances have been tailored for the various audiences we wish to engage: graduate students, staff, faculty and administrators,” he said. “I hope many will participate and continue the important campus discussions on inclusion and diversity.”

Share this article