In January 2022, the College of Education’s Dean Office and the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion announce the inaugural Equity Fellows. The college distributed nearly $13,000, awarded to projects from across the College of Education (students, staff and faculty representing all four departments and several other units).
Of the 12 submitted proposals, the committee funded nine projects (details provided below). We are excited to see these projects taking place and benefiting the College of Education community.
Most importantly, given the impact these projects are likely to have, it is the college’s intention to offer Equity Fellows program every year going forward.
Advance Spartner Mentoring Program
The Advance Spartner Mentoring Program was a voluntary, semi-structured mentorship program in which mid-to late career employees within the College of Education shared their knowledge, skills and experiences to assist colleagues in progressing their careers. The initiative received $1,500 in funding.
Program leaders included:
- Mary Keyes, Office Coordinator II Department of Teacher Education
- Lindsay Hasse, Plumber, IPF Maintenance Services, Mechanical Area
- Harmony Van Valkenberg, Administrative Assistant III / S Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology
- Alison Virag-McCann, Information Technologist IIMSU IT Client Experience
Support Staff Advisory Committee Weekly Staff Kudos
Support Staff Advisory Committee Weekly Staff Kudos provided tokens of appreciation coming from and shared to peers. The kudos were intended to foster and improve a caring environment within the college. The initiative received $500 in funding.
Program leaders included:
- Sue Carpenter
- Missy Davis
- Carmen Elliott
- Mary Keyes
- Ted Manko
- Ashley Murphy
- Shawn Rayon
Storytelling events were designed with local Michigan artists, activists and activities during spring 2022. The events were open to the public. The initiative received $1,100 in funding.
Program leaders from the Dept. of Teacher Education included:
- Sandro R. Barros
- Darshana Devarajan
- Kasun Gajasinghe
- Reyila Hadeer
Integrating DEI into HALE Curriculum
Funding was provided for faculty development in preparation for the launch of the Doctorate in Education (Ed.D.) in Leadership for Equity-Minded Change. The project provided resources to assist HALE faculty with integrating DEI into the curriculum, navigating group dynamics with diverse learners and equipping students to apply DEI research to real-world problems. The initiative received $2,000 in funding.
Program leaders from the Higher, Adult and Lifelong Education (HALE) unit included:
- Brendan Cantwell
- Kenneth Russell
School Psychology DEI Committee and the Justice Leaders Collaborative
Funding sponsored training for up to 12 individuals (students and faculty) through a partnership between the School Psychology Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) committee and the Justice Leaders Collaborative to address specific needs related to a climate survey. The initiative received $1,725 in funding.
Program leaders from the School Psychology DEI Committee included:
- Joi Claiborne (Co-chair; 3rd-year doctoral student)
- Shelbie Spear (Co-chair; 2nd-year doctoral student)
- Briana Williams (3rd-year doctoral student)
- Leah Jansen (1st-year doctoral student)
Evaluating and Redesigning UECP
Funding was provided to evaluate and redesign components of the Urban Educator Cohort Program (UECP) to better meet the needs of students by connecting with UECP alumni and providing modest monetary support, providing resources for their professional learning and their classrooms, and collecting data. The initiative received $1,250 in funding.
Program leaders from UECP included:
- Terry Flennaugh
- Mary Patillo-Dunn
Event Series for Kinesiology Graduate Students, Faculty
Several individuals hosted an event series for graduate students and faculty, such as disability and sport/physical activity, gender and sexuality, and underrepresentation of racial and ethnic groups. The purpose of this panel was for the committee to enact changes in classrooms, research and other realms of personal and professional life. The initiative received $2,000 in funding.
Program leaders from the Kinesiology Graduate Student Organization (KGSO) DEI Committee included:
- Elaine Reiche
- Andre Bateman
- Darice Brooks
- Faith Houck
- Karin Pfeiffer
Inclusive Support Systems for International Graduate Students
Funding was provided to create an Inclusive Support System for International Graduate Students in the college that included/includes:
- Climate survey to map the current states of inclusion and diversity of international students and suggest action items to the college
- Monthly mentoring workshops for international graduate students
- Create space for international students to share their expertise and experiences of education
The initiative received $2,000 in funding.
Program leaders from the Dept. of Teacher Education incldued:
- Jungmin Kwon
- Laxmi Prasad Ojha
Creation of community social events
Funding was provided to create and host three community social events over the course of the grant period. The initiative received $500 in funding.
Dante Dixson served as the program leader on behalf of the College of Education Black Caucus.