The following projects will take place during the 2018-2019 year.
Advancing Faculty Diversity
Advancing Faculty Diversity: 2018 UC President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship (PPFP) Symposium The one-day symposium to be held on campus in October 2018 will feature current PPFP and Chancellor’s fellows from a range of academic fields. The fellows received their postdoctoral award on the basis of excellent scholarship and on their past and present commitments to diversity. The symposium will offer a valuable opportunity to connect our campus community with the UC-wide President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program that is aimed at supporting diversity on our campuses. The event will provide an important venue for sharing ideas, networking, and for attracting outstanding potential future faculty to campus.
Ancestral Knowledges and Collective Healings
As part of a collaboration between the cultural centers on campus, the living histories project will highlight our collective pillars of Coalition Building, Education, Social Justice, and Healing. Our main objective is to connect how the histories of organizing for cultural spaces at UC Merced are part of continuing ancestral lineages of cultural reclaiming. La Cultura Cura/Culture Heals. The project will be two-fold: 1) a focus on transformative justice through centering indigeneity and community engagement, and 2) archiving the ancestral knowledges shared, along with organizing hxstories for cultural spaces on campus. In doing so, the living hxstories project believes in facing forward towards the past as a praxis for social justice. We believe it can provide the UCM and surrounding community a forum to heal during trying political time, as well as to collectively affirm and honor our campus and local community hxstories that have weaved and continue to weave our university.
Language Accessibility Committee
Since our university is a Hispanic Serving Institution it is important for us to have information available in Spanish to provide a more inclusive, welcoming, and supportive community for our Spanish Speaking guests. At UC Merced in fall of 2017 53.3% of our undergraduate student population identified as Hispanic. Many of our student’s families’ first language is Spanish and when they come to campus for New Student Orientation, Bobcat Day, Preview Day, Family Weekend, and Commencement, we want to be able to provide them with information in Spanish however, we want to provide culturally and linguistically interaction.
We are proposing to create a series of professional development workshops to help staff across campus develop a better understanding of the Spanish language when it comes to communicating or translating academic terms from English to Spanish. We want to specifically focus on helping staff to be more knowledgeable of the correct translation from English to Spanish of the resources their offices in order to better communicate with our Spanish speaking guests.
Merritt Writing Program Diversity Initiatives Committee
This proposal supports the formation of a Diversity Initiatives Committee within the Merritt Writing Program. The committee’s goals include promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion as aspects of teaching and in relation to workplace climate. First, the committee will provide professional development for MWP faculty with a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the composition classroom. Through faculty Common Reads, a Mini-Conference with an invited keynote speaker (ideally, one or both of the Common Read authors), and a Capstone Teaching Symposium, the committee will support faculty efforts to revise teaching practices and materials to be more responsive to diverse student needs and experiences and more equitable and inclusive in approach and design.
Outreach Support and Professional Development Staff and Faculty of Color Association
Staff and Faculty of Color Association (SFCA) at UC Merced will use the DEI grant to support outreach activities for staff and faculty and professional Leadership Interviews to promote networking and professional growth. The Leadership Interviews model is adapted from the UC Women’s Initiative for Professional Development (UC WI) program where women interview senior staff to gain professional tips and resources that can be applied to participant’s professional growth. SFCA members will solicit two people of color to interview a semester. In addition, outreach for faculty members will be conducted. SFCA needs to be strategic due to their schedules, time limits and other constraints.