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20/20 EIUnity Diversity Conference


Friday, March 6, 2020

Martin Luther King Jr. Student Union


Conference at a Glance
Registration (Alumni Lounge)
8:30 AM - 12 PM

Gender & Sexuality Diversity Workshops
(2nd Floor)
9 am - 11 am
Safe Zone Core: Gender & Sexuality Advisory Diversity Committee
1895 Room
Safe Zone Core is open to any student, staff, or faculty member who is interested in becoming an ally for the LGBTQA+ community, and learning more about gender and sexuality related issues. Topics that will be addressed include: GSD terminology, the coming out process, heterosexual privilege, facts and myths about the GSD community, the Riddle Homophobia Scale, and ways to engage in quiet activism. Completion of Core will result in becoming an identified Safe Zone Ally.
11 am 
Trans 101Gender & Sexuality Diversity Advisory Committee
Martinsville Room

Trans 101 is an interactive and exploratory presentation which reviews basic terminology, statistics, and best practices regarding the transgender umbrella. This presentation is truly a 101 and audiences can expect to leave with the proper building blocks in being a proactive ally.

1 pm 
Beyond Bystander: Gender & Sexuality Diversity Advisory Committee
Martinsville Room

The Beyond Bystander training complements the Safe Zone Core training taking a more thorough look at how to effectively advocate for members of the GSD community.  This training will provide an interactive platform to assist in being a better advocate and ally for the Gender and Sexual Diversity community. 

 2 pm
Queering Faith: Sexuality in the Bible: Gender & Sexuality Diversity Advisory Committee
Martinsville Room

Queering Faith: Sexuality in the Bible is a training that takes an in-depth look at common verses in the Bible that are typically used to combat homosexuality.  The historical context the verses were written in will be evaluated, and the translation of the verse will also be analyzed.   This training addresses the complicated relationship between religion and sexual minoritized individuals. 


Concurrent Workshops
(3rd Floor)

10:00 AM

Creating Inclusive Spaces in the Higher Education Environment
Presenter: Catherine Polydore
Arcola/Tuscola Room 

What does it mean to be inclusive? How is space defined in higher education? What are inclusive spaces? Why is there a need for inclusive spaces in a college environment? This interactive workshop will address these questions, and provide concrete examples of ways to promote inclusion in multiple college spaces.


Incarcerated Parents: Mentoring for Success
Presenter: Frances Murphy
Effingham Room

Supporting parents during incarceration strengthens parent/child bonds; builds a pathway toward reunification upon release from prison; and helps mutual growth for parents and children through the months or years of separation.   Learn how to encourage parents who are inside to communicate with and understand their children.  


Increasing Diversity of Teacher Candidates through Inclusive Excellence in Higher Education
Presenter: Jennifer Buchter Ph.D. & Jennifer Stringfellow Ph.D.
Martinsville Room 

Educators work with diverse individuals, families, and communities. To increase and support a diverse workforce IHE need to examine and address barriers that negatively impact diverse students. Inclusive excellence can support diverse students through pedagogical strategies that address the needs of students with a variety of backgrounds, interests, and abilities.


 How a School Wide Program Constructs Effective Peer Mentors and Student Leaders
Presenter: Dr. Heidi Larson Josey Fioretto, Tessa Hanlon, Alex Harn, Aileen Tierney, Will Weckhorst

Charleston/Mattoon Room

This workshop will present the data-based B.I.O.N.I.C. program and its impact on growing young leaders. It will discuss the four teams within the program, its benefits, and focus specifically on the function and impact of the Grief team at Mattoon High School.



11:00 AM 

With Privilege Comes Responsibility
Presenter: Shawn Peoples & Arranda Gardner
Arcola/Tuscola Room

This workshop discusses the topic of privilege and the way it effects our society.  We will define practical ways of moving beyond the conversation by using various examples of privilege to understand, speak out, and speak up on behalf of others.  


How to Avoid Toxic Relationships
Presenter: Maggie L. Burkhead
Charleston/Mattoon Room

Knowledge, is very powerful to help recognize and avoid unhealthy relationships.  We will discuss the impact of toxic/abusive relationship in areas to include: family, friends, and intimate relationships. Participants will walk away with a clearer understanding of why boundaries must be set to achieve better mental health and physical well-being. 


12:00 PM

FREE LUNCHEON w Registration
MLK University Union Grand Ballroom


1:00 PM

Social Justice Teaching Standards: An Introduction
Presenter: Kristin E. Routt and Carlos Amaya
Effingham Room

Want to inform your teaching with equity and anti-bias practices but don’t know where to start? Come and learn how the Social Justice Teaching Standards created by Teaching Tolerance provide a framework for anti-bias education that can guide curriculum development and make your class space more just and equitable.


Limits of a Safe Space: Community Fishbowl Conversation Debrief
Presenter: Tim Abel & Claude Samira Abdoulaye Pedila
Arcola/Tuscola Room

This session will be a follow up to the January 28th, 2020, community conversation coled by the Diversity Action Council and the Tarble Arts Center. This fishbowl conversation looked at the limits of claiming a safe space while asking questions to build more empathetic and inclusive spaces.


Deconstructing Diversity:  from Racialization and Rationalization to Reformation and Regeneration
Presenter: Dr. Carole Rene’ Collins Ayanlaja
Arcola/Tuscola Room

Diversity is a popular word.  It is used commonplace. It creates reaction and response on many levels.  Exactly what does it mean to be diverse or promote diversity, personally and professionally? Is there a universal definition or the expectation of an acceptable “progressive” diverse mindset?  Does diversity require that one accept all other understandings while minimizing one’s own?

Through reflections on race and racism, along with an exploration of how diversity presents itself through mindset and action, this presentation identifies existing paradigms and patterns in our individual, social, and organizational responses to diversity and pathways to progress.  The dialogue will suggest introspective perspectives on diversity and pathways to more authenticity personally and collectively.


2:00 PM

Factors Impacting Persistence of African Americans at a Predominantly White University
Presenter: Candace Thompson & Jon Coleman
Charleston/Mattoon Room

How is higher education different for African American students?  This program will present findings from a Masters' Thesis looking at factors that positively and negatively impact the success of African American students at a PWI and how faculty and staff can better support these students and improve student retention.


 #BeyondAlly: How to be an UNAPOLOGETIC ADVOCATE to Black
          LGBTQ+ Individuals in Higher Education (and other institutions of oppression)!
Presenter: Ms. Yolanda Vivian Williams, M.Ed., M.A.
Arcola/Tuscola Room

In this session, the term “Unapologetic Advocate” will be introduced to some and re-introduced to others.  We will discuss LGBTQ+ terminology, SOGIE (Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, and Gender Expression) definitions/concepts, examine the conversations (or lack thereof) about how to make higher education a more welcoming environment for Black LGBTQ+ Faculty, Staff and Students, as well as, discuss the importance of intersectionality, showing support and becoming an UNAPOLOGETIC Advocate!


How College Christian Student Leaders Discover Their Purpose
Presenter: Emmanuel Ayiku
Effingham Room

Life has meaning and individuals are all in search of it. Weiten, Dunn & Hammer (2015) said that theorists working from different perspectives on this topic of purpose all agree that “the basic challenge of modern life has become the search for meaning.”  Join me as we look at meaning making, purpose, and leadership through the eyes of College Christian Student Leaders.  


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Non-EIU Guest Registration






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Contact Information

Mona Y. Davenport, Ph.D.
Executive Director

1122 - Blair Hall

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