Keynote - Dr. Tracey Ray Robinson
Friday, January 14
8:45 AM to 10:00 AM Examining the prerequisites to equity-mindedness in the age of attacks on diversity, inclusion, and global understanding
Tracey Ray Robinson
Dr. Tracey Ray Robinson has served as West Chester University’s inaugural Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer since 2018. She has been working in higher education for over 20 years, serving in many capacities in academic affairs, student affairs and as a faculty member. Previously, she worked at North Carolina State University for 20 years where she served in many capacities including serving as the Assistant Vice Provost in the Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (OIED), Director of Multicultural Student Affairs, Interim Director for the African American Cultural Center, Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Curriculum Instruction & Counselor Education and an adjunct faculty member with the Africana Studies Program.
Her background as a Social Psychologist has enabled her to conduct research and program assessment to assist with effectively advancing university-wide leadership and assessment in the areas of student recruitment, retention and graduation and well as campus climate, diversity education, advocacy and professional development. In her previous and current role, she also supports faculty and staff diversity initiatives including new employee orientation, new faculty orientation, and faculty pipeline initiatives such as West Chester’s Frederick Douglass Teaching Fellows Program and NC State’s Building Future Faculty (BFF) program. She has led unconscious bias and prejudice reduction workshops, as well as taught undergraduate courses on cultural competence. She has designed programs and courses that promote personal, professional and leadership development, while fostering student, faculty and staff engagement and success.
Dr. Tracey Ray Robinson earned a B.A. degree in Psychology, an M.S. in Social Psychology and a Ph.D. in Social Psychology with a minor in Public Administration from NC State University. She firmly believes in global citizenship and can often be found sharing the quote, “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” ~Saint Augustine
This panel will explore the wide variety of alternative assessment practices that differ from traditional methods of summative and formative assessment. Through this critical conversation we would like to unpack the influence of assessment and grading methods as well as engage in an exploration of less heralded options such as contract grading, flexible assessment, un-grading, inclusive assessment, cooperative exams, and other authentic assessment activities.
Sharon DeJoy is an Associate Professor and coordinator of the BS in Public Health program. Prior to coming to WCU, she was an Assistant Professor at SUNY Potsdam. She earned her MPH and PhD from the University of South Florida. Sharon is also a midwife not currently in practice.
Gabrielle Atwood Halko is a Professor of English who specializes in children's and young adult literature. She centers collaboration and student agency in her pedagogy, including her recent adaptation of grading contracts to literature courses. She is a co-founder and inaugural co-editor of Research on Diversity in Youth Literature, a peer-reviewed, open-access interdisciplinary resource. Her latest research project, a book manuscript, examines how moments of American crisis are portrayed in children's picture books, with a particular focus on Japanese American incarceration and 9/11.
Liam Oliver Lair
Dr. Liam Oliver Lair (he/him) is a feminist scholar with a PhD in Women, Gender, & Sexuality Studies. He teaches classes on feminism, gender, queer activism, and trans studies. His research focuses on gender, race, identity, and anti-racist pedagogy, particularly as it pertains to being a white and masculine-presenting teacher. Dr. Lair also works with faculty, staff, and students to make the academy more affirming for historically marginalized students.
I have been teaching at the Department of Languages and Cultures, West Chester University, for more than 20 years. I teach Spanish at all levels of language proficiency as well as culture clusters. I have presented at many conferences at a local, regional and international level. I have also led many study abroad programs to Costa Rica, and Guatemala, where students have participated in various programs, including service learning. I am always trying new approaches to meet student's needs and make learning interesting and meaningful to them.
Dr. Zalphia Wilson-Hill arrived at Rowan University after 36 years in the New Jersey Public School System as a classroom teacher and as a Professional School Counselor. In her capacity as a Professional School Counselor, she served as the High School Affirmative Action Officer, the Sexual Harassment Officer, and the Leader of the Crisis Team. A highlight of her career was when she was nominated as the NJ Educator of the Year by the United States Marine Corps. Dr. Wilson-Hill has made professional presentations to the International Counselors Association in Rome, Italy, School Psychologists and Counselors.
Join us for a brief meditation to reset ourselves for the afternoon panels.
During our months teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic, instructors and students alike experienced a new kind of humanity through our webcams, with children, roommates, pets, jobs, and numerous other interlocutors competing for our attention. Many instructors attempted to create empathetic, flexible classroom experiences, knowing students were also experiencing heightened anxiety and uncertainty. But did it work? In this roundtable discussion with West Chester University students, we will hear about what approaches worked best from a student perspective and their suggestions for how to re-imagine the classroom in the future.
Fourth Year student
First Year Transfer student
Senior Nutrition student
Hunter P. Muller
This panel will discuss proactive teaching and learning strategies for nurturing a more equitable learning environment. An equitable classroom environment represents all learners without erasing differences; including a diversity of perspectives and committing to uphold this framework will help us to maximize the potential and ability for success for each student.
Rick Howard, DSc, CSCS, *D, FNSCA Rick Howard earned his doctorate in Health Promotion and Wellness from Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions. He is an Assistant Professor in Applied Sports Science at West Chester University (PA), Kennari (Teacher) at Keilir Health Academy in Ásbrú, Iceland, and Fellow of the National Strength and Conditioning Association. He works on many collaborative projects to create a physically literate culture, including collaborations with ACSM, USCCE, PAA, Project Play, and JCSMS. He contributes peer-reviewed book chapters, articles, blogs, and podcasts and presents nationally and internationally on physical activity strategies from cradle-to-grave.
I am a PhD student in Composition and Applied Linguistics at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, completing my dissertation on the use of multimodal strategies within the college English classroom. I currently teach in the English Department at West Chester University. Since 2017, I have engaged my students in the practice of visual notetaking—or sketchnoting—during literary discussions of text. This is a multimodal approach to learning, giving students something to visualize on paper which they would otherwise conventionally hear and speak about in the classroom.
Linda Stevenson teaches International Relations in the Political Science Dept. of West Chester University. She is the co-director of Global Studies, and generally teaches courses with interdisciplinary, diversity and social justice issues as centerpieces of the coursework, including Intro. to Global Studies, Latin American Culture & Politics, Latinx Politics, Women & Politics, and U.S.-Latin American Relations. Her recent research focuses on the well-being of Latin American and African immigrants to the U.S.. She currently serves as the Faculty Associate for the Center for Civic Engagement and Social Impact, and seeks to support faculty in integrating service-learning in their courses.
tonya thames-taylor, also known as dr. t3, is an Associate Professor of History (American)and founding director of the African American Studies Program. She is a specialist in the 19th and 20th centuries. Her research focuses on gender, race, human rights, and Southern histories. She has received numerous fellowships and grants. She is a Trustee for the Friends Publishing Corporation, on the Board of Directors for the Friends Historical Association (publisher of Quaker History), and a member of the Governance and Equity Committees of the American Friends Service Committee. She is a magna cum laude graduate of Tougaloo College (an historically Black college)and The University of Mississippi.