Teaching Commons > Events > Fall Forum on Teaching & Learning > Race & Social Identity (2017)

Race & Social Identity (2017)

Teaching Commons Fall Forum on Teaching & Learning: Race and Social Identity in the Classroom. Oct 20th, 9:30am, LPC Stu Center

Each year the Fall Forum on Teaching and Learning brings together members of DePaul community to connect with one another and share strategies for teaching and learning. The Fall Forum kicks off the academic year with an event focused on pedagogy, complementing the annual Teaching and Learning Conference in the spring. This was the first Fall Forum in which students played an important role—both as part of the planning process and as participants.

The theme, Race and Social Identity, is especially important to the DePaul community given our university's commitment to creating and maintaining an inclusive learning environment. We intentionally linked this theme to DePaul's commitment to the education of a diverse student body, which is stated in our university mission statement and which connects to our institution’s Catholic and urban character.

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9:30 AM Registration - Coffee & Tea
10:00 AM Welcoming Remarks - Elizabeth Ortiz, VP for Institutional Diversity & Equity
10:15 AM Keynote Address - Terrell Strayhorn, CEO/Founder of Do Good Work Educational Consulting
11:15 AM Interview with Terrell Strayhorn by Coya Paz Brownrigg (Assoc. Prof., Theatre School) & Michael Lynch (Student, Organizational Communication)
12:00 PM Catered Lunch - Soup, salad, and sandwiches
1:00 PM Workshop with Terrell Strayhorn
2:00 PM Closing Remarks - Lawrence Hamer, Professor & Associate Provost for Research & Diversity

Learning Outcomes

After participating in the 2017 Fall Forum on Teaching and Learning, faculty, staff, and students were able to:

  • Identify some of their own implicit biases
  • Describe some ways in which race may impact the student experience in the classroom
  • Identify potential roadblocks relating to race and social identity to student success on campus
  • Articulate how intersectional identities may impact college success
  • Develop at least one strategy to ensure a successful experience in a racially and socially diverse classroom

Keynote: "And, Survey Says... Race (Still) Matters"

More than 60 years after the American Civil Rights Movement against racial segregation and discrimination, there has been a swelling tide of opinion characterizing the country as "post-racial." And while there can be no denial of the tremendous progress that's been made since the 1950's—an era marked by race-exclusive restrooms, schools, and neighborhoods—most social science research clearly indicates that sizeable gaps still exist in earnings, education, and employment, with African-Americans and other ethnic minority groups trailing their White and Asian counterparts. In this keynote, Dr. Terrell Strayhorn tackles this topic directly using insights from his own survey research and polls to demonstrate that race still matters in education and college campuses. He offers a contemporary, yet optimistic, view that blends current events with personal anecdotes and humor. Come to learn; leave ready to act!

Workshop: "Talking about 'The Elephant' in the Classroom: Race & Racism"

College campuses are microcosms of the larger society. Just as racial segregation and discrimination created volatile conditions for the country in the 1950's and 60's, those same forces ignited campus protests and sit-ins at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, University of Chicago, and Florida A&M University, to name a few. Reminiscent of that bygone era, today, we've witnessed a steady rise in campus protests and news headlines that bring race and racism back to centerfold. From hunger strikes at the University of Missouri, "walk outs" at Virginia Commonwealth University, and both controversial speakers and viral videos at UCLA, it's clear that race and racism still matter in higher education. National polls report that less than 40% of faculty and students feel "comfortable" talking about race in the classroom and most have little experience doing so. In this workshop, Dr. Terrell Strayhorn calls out the "elephant" (race and racism) in the classroom, explains why it's so hard to discuss, and then offers tips and proven techniques for handling this heavy topic effectively in the classroom and beyond. Come to learn; leave read to talk!

Keynote Speaker

T. Strayhorn
Terrell Strayhorn is Founder/CEO of Do Good Work Educational Consulting LLC and until recently was on the faculty at Ohio State University, where he also served as Director of the Center for Higher Education Enterprise (CHEE) and Founding Director of the Center for IDEAS within the College of Education and Human Ecology.

An internationally-recognized student success scholar, highly acclaimed public speaker, and award-winning writer, Strayhorn is author of 10 books and over 200 book chapters and journal articles and other scholarly publications. He has given hundreds of invited keynotes and lectures at more than 500 universities and conferences across the globe. He maintains an active and highly visible research agenda focusing on major policy issues in education: student access and achievement; issues of race, equity and diversity; impact of college on students, and student learning and development. His most popular book, College Students’ Sense of Belonging: A Key to Educational Success, has won a book award and sold record copies nationally.

Known for using the hashtag #DoGoodWork on social media, Strayhorn was named one of the country’s top diversity scholars by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education in 2011, one of Business First’s “Top 40 under 40,” one of the “Top 20 to Know in Education,” and became the youngest full professor in Ohio State’s history in 2014. He has been quoted in major news outlets including the Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside HigherEd, Huffington Post, and newspapers across the nation. Prior to Ohio State, Strayhorn was Special Assistant to the Provost at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and Research Associate at the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) in Washington, DC. Strayhorn received a bachelor’s degree (BA) from the University of Virginia (UVA), a masters degree (MEd) in educational policy from the Curry School of Education at UVA, and doctorate (PhD) in higher education from Virginia Tech. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated and a native of Virginia Beach, Virginia.

Afternoon Interviewers

Coya Paz Brownrigg is an Associate Professor in The Theatre School at DePaul University, where she serves as chair of the Theatre Studies department, and the Artistic Director of the historic Free Street Theater.  Coya holds a PhD in Performance Studies from Northwestern University, and is a regular commentator on race, media and pop culture for Vocalo.org (91.1). She has published several articles on Latina performance, Latina/o identities, and public violence, and she is currently at work on Ensemble Made Chicago, a full length book about ensemble created performance in Chicago co-authored with Chloe Johnston. Coya's writing is featured in the following anthologies: Blacktino Queer Performance, Windy City Queer, Rebeldes: A Proyecto Latina Anthology, and Sexualities in Education: A Reader and she has been a featured reader at dozens of literary events including: Proyecto Latina, Paper Machete, Palabra Pura, and 2nd Story. Above all, she believes in the power of performance and poetry to build community towards social change.

Michael Lynch is a 5th-year student here at DePaul University majoring in Organizational Communication. At DePaul, Michael is actively engaged on campus and is a Men of Color Peer Mentor for the Office of Multicultural Student Success and a Diversity Assistant for the Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity. He lives by the maxim, “To whom much is given, much is required,” and actively gives back to his community through service and mentoring. Michael is the President of the DePaul University Student Government Association, formerly the Senator for Intercultural Awareness, and a proud member of the Black Student Union.  A native of Homewood, Illinois – Michael plans to pursue a career in Marketing and Public Relations in the public and private sector with aspirations of becoming a Communications Consultant for public officials, corporations, and organizations.

Event Sponsors

The fall forum is jointly sponsored by the Office for Teaching, Learning and Assessment (TLA) and the President’s Signature Series.

Student Affairs, the University-Center for Writing-based Learning (UCWbL), Student Government Association (SGA), the Office for Institutional Diversity and Equity (OIDE),  and Faculty Council's Committee on Learning and Teaching (COLT) contribute to the planning of the event.​