Trending: Hot Topics – An Introduction to the New Facets of Diversity | November 2017
Newsletter November 2017
Trending: Hot Topics – An Introduction to the New Facets of Diversity
We live in a world that is continuously changing, particularly regarding the new and emerging diversity factors which are beginning to occur in combination with each other, or appearing in new settings with new applications. These diversity factors include many of the common demographic combinations (i.e. race, ethnicity, and gender) and also less common factors: ableism, sexual orientation, sexual identity, Eastern religions, or religious doctrine.
This is referred to as “intersectionality;” the Diversity Education program, “Trending; Hot Topics in Diversity” strives to capture these new manifestations of diversity in our daily lives.
Trending is an introductory program, created as a discussion series. The series is based on video portrayals of real people from across the world with these varied diverse factors. Its’ learning objectives:
identify the different factors;
recognize their unique impact;
list the limitations and complexities of the related stereotypes or potential biases that occur
better understand the integrity and contributions that these men and women possess / contribute.
Examples of Trending programs for the 2017-2018 include:
examining how social media dialogue dissolved bigotry for one woman in her southern church;
exploring the contributions of military members who identify as transgendered; and
navigating a deaf person’s contributions and experience in a hearing world.
The program was guided by the Director of Diversity Education with feedback sought by other diversity professionals in the academic community. While Trending is still a dialogue-based program (like Race Talks), it is different from other diversity programs. It is designed to introduce a broader array of diversity factors - beyond those already addressed in the Strategic Plan - as well as highlight the various underrepresented populations identified by RIT’s Framework for Inclusive Excellence, established by previous Administrative leaders, Vice President of Diversity & Inclusion, Dr. Kevin McDonald, and the RIT governance groups.
The programs are facilitated by faculty and staff from within the RIT community, as well as the Director of Diversity Education. More information about these programs and facilitators can be found on the RIT Diversity Calendar, at http://www.rit.edu/diversity/diversity-education-programs.
It is essential to have exposure to learning opportunities about these areas of demographic change and intersectionality which will comprise the world of the future. Supplemental information to learn more on each topic will be distributed at the end the sessions, held monthly on Fridays (each week after Gray Matter) at noon, with pizza and soda for light refreshments.