Oct. 4, 2022: Unity in Diversity Days
The second day of our virtual DEI event is on Tuesday, Oct. 4, and is available for Merrimack faculty, staff, students and community members. Please review the schedule below.
Schedule for Day Two - Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2022
8-9:15 a.m. – Queer and Trans History and Liberation
Speaker: Chrysanthemum Tran
The state demands our “legal sex”, suggesting the inverse must exist: unlawful sex. Gender and sex have been long codified into the textual fabrics that shape our reality. Whether a dictionary recognizes new vocabularies or new laws spell out new definitions, gendered language persists across decades and locales. However, the mundanities of gender and sex are not without lethal consequences. This presentation confronts historical, legal and other found texts, and interventions that poetry can provide. Studied work includes from BIPOC and LGBTQ+ poets who reference historical and archival texts.
10-11:15 a.m. – Affirming Neurodiversity in the Classroom and Beyond
Speaker: Jeannette Roberes
The benefits of neurodiversity have gained traction in business, but college and career support for students with disabilities falls short. Some of the world’s biggest companies, including Google, Microsoft and IBM have launched hiring initiatives focused on recruiting more workers with autism, ADHD, and other categories of neurodiversity. However, experts say schools still do little to teach students how to leverage their strengths. In this presentation, we will learn how issues that challenge students in the classroom can become benefits in the boardroom.
Noon-1:15 p.m. – Anti-Fascism: Supporting Targets of Racial, Cultural, Religious Discrimination & Violence
Speaker: Michael Vavrus
Misconceptions widely exist over anti-fascist actions in the U.S. and Europe the past 100 years. A purpose of this presentation is to help clarify misconceptions about anti-fascism in the context of Merrimack’s “unwavering commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.” The presentation provides an overview of key contemporary characteristics of anti-fascism. Topics include anti-fascist approaches to counteract far-right extremism’s delegitimization of multiculturalism and diversity. A discussion with audience participants follows the presentation.
2-5 p.m. – Food Justice Summit (in person, Arcidi A)
Convenor: Elaine Ward
Co-Chairs: Eleanor Shonkoff & Vivian Villaman
Speakers: Becca Berkey, Miguel Cruz, Bill La Pierre, Lesley Melendez, Elecia Miller, Kerri Perry, Andrew Shapiro, Ellen Townson, Eunice Zeigler
Food is a basic human right. Food Justice demands universal access to nutritious, affordable, and culturally-appropriate food for all, and advocacy for the well-being and safety of those involved in the food production process. Practicing food justice leads to a strong local food system, self-reliant communities, and a healthy environment. The Merrimack College Food Justice Summit connects college students, community food security champions, academics, and policymakers in an effort to understand root causes of food insecurity and envision ways our work together realizes systemic change that eliminates hunger and increases access to healthy, nutritious food for all.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Distinguished Educator Certificate
The President’s Special Initiative on DEI and the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (CETL) introduce a new certificate program for faculty and staff who have completed at least 25 hours of DEI education and training since January 2019. Relevant experience may include education and training on and off campus. Faculty and staff who complete the minimum hours required will be recognized publicly and receive a certificate and a LinkedIn badge. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis. To apply for the certificate, applicants should complete the training recognition form, listing the date, hours and nature of the training they wish to get recognized for.