August Conference

August 27, 2021

Further details forthcoming. Conference will be virtual with an in-person afternoon reception.

Agenda

9:00am – 10:00am: Welcome and Faculty Panel

10:15am -11:45am Keynote, Dr. Mignonne Guy

Summoning Freire and Evoking Baldwin to Navigate the Politics of Disruptive Pedagogy

In the wake of two pandemics that have disproportionately taken the lives of Black Americans — COVID-19 and the killings of Elijah McClain, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, VCU alumni Marcus Peters, along with many others in recent months and years, the need to redress historic and present racialized injustices has become a civic imperative. Mirroring inequities across multiple health and social conditions, Black Americans have borne a disproportionate burden of incidence of and mortality from COVID-19. Among other structural factors, researchers have attributed this inequity to economic and housing policies, and social factors such as essential worker status, multigenerational and family households, and overrepresentation in congregant living environments (Moore et al., 2020). The conditions that have increased the exposure and burden of disease among Black Americans arise from long- standing discrimination and injustices stemming from structural and institutional racism. The racist systems that have rendered Black Americans more vulnerable to COVID-19 are the same that fuel the killings of Black men, women, and children with impunity and recent data show that 1/1000 Black men and boys will be killed by police (Edwards et al., 2019). In response, students, community members, and scholars of all racial and ethnic backgrounds have demanded action in their communities, the workplace, and in classrooms to publicly denounce anti-black racism, and to call attention to the ongoing devaluation and dehumanization of black and brown people in the U.S. These acts have taken the form of public protests, investments in organizations and institutions that support racial justice, and institutional commitments to anti-racism and systemic change by way of decolonizing K-12, undergraduate/graduate, and professional education. Dr. Mignonne C. Guy will address the renewed urgency to teach about race in the U.S., cultivate a culture of anti-racism, and build coalitions to further an overdue and necessary shift towards conscientization in teaching, critical pedagogy and social and political activism, all with the goal of creating a more just, inclusive academy and society.

12:00pm – 1:00pm Birds of a Feather Lunch (Disciplines)

These sessions will not be recorded.

  • Humanities
  • Natural Sciences and Mathematics
  • Social Sciences
  • Interdisciplinary Studies
  • Languages
  • Visual and Performing Arts
  • Academic Support Partners

1:15pm – 3:00pm: Workshop, Dr. Kim Case

Anti-racist Pedagogy Beyond 2020: The Power of Intersectional Humility

Since the uprising for racial justice and Black lives in summer 2020, the phrase “anti-racist pedagogy” has increased in popularity. How do campus leaders and educators move toward a shared understanding of these words? How do academic administrators, faculty developers, and faculty convert these words from merely aspirational to campus-wide pedagogical change? To begin a journey toward anti-racist pedagogy that seeks to dismantle systemic racism and white supremacy, we must interrogate assumptions, myths, and mindsets that prevent the work. This workshop applies intersectional theory and analysis of power to both critique and move beyond our traditional higher education approaches aimed at diversity and inclusion. Intersectional cultural humility and pedagogical humility allow us to recognize opportunities for personal growth, identify internal and external barriers to change, and infuse student expertise. As campus leaders and educators, how will we intentionally center “anti-racist pedagogy” for systemic change beyond its 2020 spike in popularity?

Aspiring anti-racist educators must strengthening our skills regarding pedagogical humility (Case et al., 2020) and intersectional cultural humility (Buchanan et al., 2020; Crenshaw, 1989). Through pedagogical humility, faculty interrogate assumptions about ways of being and knowing and infuse student expertise throughout the curriculum as co-creators of the learning experience. Pedagogical humility opens the door to break down isolation and usher in brave spaces, unconditional support, innovation, and creativity for anti-racist pedagogy (Case et al., 2020). As Tervalon and Murray-Garcia (1998) argued, cultural humility is a process, not an outcome, that requires ongoing and frequent self-reflection on power. Pedagogical and intersectional cultural humility align to provide a path forward for anti-racist pedagogy that thrives beyond the potentially temporary popularity of the phrase.

3:30 – 5pm Campus-based, In-Person Receptions

This session will not be recorded.

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