“The Fierce Urgency of Now: SIUE Shaping a Changing World” Virtual Conference, Oct. 14-15

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“The Fierce Urgency of Now: SIUE Shaping a Changing World” Virtual Conference, Oct. 14-15

DiversityDayAmid the public and economic health crisis of COVID-19 and harsh realities of racial inequities occurring across the nation, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville continues to work toward and promote change that unites people and underscores human value, according to Venessa A. Brown, PhD, associate chancellor and chief diversity officer. 

The University will host its Third Annual Diversity Day, “The Fierce Urgency of Now: SIUE Shaping a Changing World.” The virtual conference will be held from Wednesday-Thursday, Oct. 14-15.  Register now at siue.edu/institutional-diversity-and-inclusion

“Designed with community engagement, participation across the Southern Illinois University (SIU) System and conversations with other educational institutions in mind, this multi-event day will showcase myriad ways in which membership in the global community is core to SIUE’s values and mission,” said Brown, Diversity Day’s host and coordinator. 

VenessaBrownThe conference goals are:

  • To share new knowledge
  • To celebrate inclusive excellence
  • To create brave spaces for dialogue
  • To provide visibility and professional development opportunities for educational communities around diversity, equity, anti-racism and inclusion

“Diversity Day is a time to bring all of us together, not only to celebrate the richness of the different races, ethnicities and cultures at SIUE,” noted Brown, “but also to learn from each other and educate our community about diversity, equity, racism, anti-racism and inclusion.  

“This year, we are excited to provide Diversity Day in a virtual format and welcome higher education institutions, organizations, community members and other groups to share in this personal and professional development opportunity.” 

The University’s ongoing commitment to its core values of inclusion and citizenship is to be applauded, especially during the current times, cited Brown.

“I am extremely proud of SIUE for being proactive and creating brave spaces for us to speak truth at a time such as this in our world,” she elaborated. “The creation of SIUE’s Anti-Racism Task Force (ARTF) was made a priority by Chancellor Randy Pembrook. Amazing conversations that include identifying areas of systemic barriers to equity and inclusion, historical knowledge gaps in American history, and personal commitments to change have been taking place every Tuesday and Thursday since the beginning of summer. 

“The SIUE Black Faculty and Staff Association (BFSA), a constituency group, has given voice to and provided action for the needs and concerns of Black faculty and staff, which ultimately impacts Black students. Equally important are SIUE’s institutional commitment to keep talking to one another and sharing stories through such outlets as the SIU System’s Conversation of Understanding, Sustained Dialogue and Inclusive Conversations sessions (coordinated by Lindy Wagner, director for the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion), and a host of other educational opportunities that speak to systemic racism.” 

Diversity Day will feature more than 22 presentations, including a luncheon panel and an international panel. A full event schedule and registration link is available on the SIUE Institutional Diversity and Inclusion website. Once registered, a confirmation email with a link to the Virtual Conference Program will be sent, and participants can access Zoom meeting links to each session. 

For more information, contact diversity_day@siue.edu or 618-650-5382. 

Venessa A. Brown, PhD, associate chancellor and chief diversity officer.

Author: Admin