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«INNOVATION ANGE CH d n a ST 2N1VERSITY IN RIVING TH THE I URY U CENT 16-17 APRIL 15 A Summit Focused on Black Faculty, Staff and Graduate Students in ...»

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As educators, we understand the value of engaging actively in conversations about complex, real-world, compelling problems for our students. This has been well established, and we are making strides toward facilitating more of it. But we generally overlook the fact that there is great value for faculty, as well, to explore similarly complex and challenging “problems” with respected peers—particularly when those problems are significant and connected to their professional lives. And what could be more relevant and ripe for study, reflection and collaboration than teaching and learning?

In 2014, two WSSU faculty reading groups committed to learn more about teaching and learning through readings and conversation about evidence-based teaching practices. One group read a varied collection of published articles and book chapters, the other group read Ken Bain’s _What the Best College Teachers Do_, and both engaged in productive discourse around teaching and learning scholarship and stories from their own teaching practices.

Both groups were deemed successful in creating opportunities for faculty of different disciplines, age groups, ranks, and teaching experience to advance their own teaching and contribute to teaching effectiveness campus-wide. Newer faculty appreciated professional development that was low-risk, collegial, and non-evaluative; tenured faculty enjoyed some validation as well as new ideas and understandings. All relished the camaraderie, mutual mentoring, multidisciplinary perspectives and resulting projects.

Faculty reading groups provide an excellent structure to help faculty members develop scholarly teaching and create the scholarship of teaching and learning (SoTL). A panel of reading group participants will offer insight into this particular avenue for providing diverse faculty opportunities to improve their effectiveness as professionals and achieve success in the academy.

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TITLE Integrative Learning: A Model for Student and Faculty Development


We will present results from a pilot involving Integrative Learning in the General Biology I course since many students who learn basic biological concepts have difficulty connecting them to other disciplines. Thus, certain concepts of physics were incorporated into the course, including metabolism, cell communication, cellular respiration, and biomolecules. The students’ knowledge and their beliefs towards biology were assessed using AACU’s “Integrative Learning VALUE Rubric” and the Colorado Learning Attitudes about Science Survey (CLASS) to connect indirect and direct assessments. For comparison, these same assessments were given to students in a General Biology class that did not use Integrative Learning. We learned that there are some correlations with the students’ attitudes towards the subject and their overall understanding of the material.

The results were shared with Winston-Salem State University’s faculty from various disciplines at a Faculty STEM Institute. These Institutes allowed us to receive insights from colleagues in psychology, chemistry, biology, physics, math, behavioral sciences, education, and nursing. They also served as a venue for forming interdisciplinary partnerships.

Our next step is to track the General Biology students as they progress into other science courses and continually encourage faculty to use this model and form new partnerships within and across disciplines.

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TITLE I’m not Your Superwoman: The Role of Mental Health on the Physical Well-Being of African-American Women Scholars


This presentation will examine the concious and unconscious ways African-American Women Scholars engage in self-care as a survival mechanism.

African-American women continue to outnumber other racial and ethnic groups in rates of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and numerous other physical health indicators. This presentation will present preliminary data from a grant funded study in an effort to begin a discussion on the role of mental health on the overall physical health and well-being of African-American Women Scholars.

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TITLE African-American Women Scholars: Challenges and Opportunities


In this interactive, question-and-answer, panel-style session, members of the DIVAS (Distinguished, Intellectual, Virtuous, Academic, Sistas) Collective will explore how we have been working to reconceptualize the doctoral experience and create a safe space for Black women who are in doctoral programs and who have already acquired their terminal degrees to thrive in academia. The DIVAS were formed in 2009 as a collective to address the unique concerns and perspectives facing Black Female Ph.D. students at a public higher education institution in the southeastern United States. The DIVAS collective has allowed Black women doctoral students and new professionals to “stand in the gap” and become the “othermother” (Guiffrida, 2005) for Black women during their Ph.D. processes. As DIVAS, we understand that the experiences of Black women in academia are very complex and nuanced. As such, our mission is to empower Black women in the academy by providing mentoring as well as academic and research support to enhance scholarship and community involvement as we believe that service to one’s community is an essential characteristic of social uplift. The panelists will unpack the Essential Components of the DIVAS framework and discuss how this structure has not only helped and continues to help them support one another, but they will also share how this innovative framework forms the catalyst for merging the personal and the pedagogical (Brock, 2005).

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TITLE “Where do we go from here?” Black Intellectuals and the Future of the University


From Cardinal Newman’s The Idea of a University (1852) to Julia Benda’s La Trahison des clercs (1927) to Harold Cruse’s The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual (1967), scholars throughout the modern era have attempted to formulate a critical understanding of the role and function of the intellectual and the university. In light of the tremendous upheavals in higher education as a result of the global crisis in capitalist political economy, university based intellectuals have experienced a new and profound crisis of vision, mission, and vocation. For black intellectuals in the American academy, the current crisis can be said to be one that is always, already in light of their precarious historical and contemporary circumstances and existence in the university. The current situation for black academic intellectuals however is particularly acute given the extensive regime of fiscal austerity, internally resurgent disciplinary dictates, and pervasive technocratic thinking that instrumentalizes thought and human potential. This panel conversation seeks to make a critical intervention in this conjuncture by examining the unique contours of this moment within the context of North Carolina. By highlighting the exceptional challenges and distinct opportunities facing black intellectuals in the university, the panel will provide new avenues for thinking and hosting alternative visions for black intellectual life and institutional existence within an ever changing university.

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TITLE Diversity Succession Planning in Higher Education


At present, women and minorities are having considerable trouble moving into leadership roles in higher education. According to a 2007 report by the American Council on Education, the numbers of women and minorities in presidential positions at colleges and universities have not increased significantly since 1998. Not only has there been little movement in the presidency, but these groups are also underrepresented in other senior administrators such as, Dean, Provost and Vice Presidents. Due to the low numbers of women and minorities assuming leadership roles, the need to develop “succession planning models” should be considered to help increase the number of minorities in leadership. Succession planning can help institutions realize current employees who not only have talent, but potential to move into leadership roles. The ACE report highlights the fact that almost half of all college presidents are age 61 or older, which offers opportunities for renewal. As a result of this data, ACE and others are recommending that more women and minorities should be considered for presidencies, as well as promoting more women and minorities to chief academic officer positionsthe most traditional preparation for the presidency. In order to address these deficiencies, institutions of higher education should consider the following factors for developing a succession plan: (1) mentoring, (2) professional development models, and (3). The Chronicle for Higher Education shows there are currently 8 sitting college/university presidents who have tenures of 30 years or more in that role. This presentation will cover the ideal of succession planning and the impact of mentoring in the senior administrative planning for institutional survival.

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TITLE Leadership and Coalition Building for a Diverse Society: A Transformative Course


This presentation will focus on the transformative impact of a general education course based on the National Coalition Building Institute (NCBI)’s model of prejudice reduction. NCBI offers a comprehensive structure for embracing different individuals and perspectives in a variety of settings.

The course provides a structure in which students critically examine issues of individual identity, group identity, experiences of other groups and the impact of discrimination. Students learn skills for addressing prejudicial comments, intergroup conflict and more. The course emphasizes the importance of developing students’ awareness as global citizens, and provides techniques and strategies for successfully leading diverse groups.

Students in the course realized learning gains in their self-reports on measures of intercultural awareness including strategies to deal with intergroup conflict, comfort in leading diverse groups of people, comfort in interacting with people who are different from themselves, and commitment to being an inclusive leader.

This session will share insights gained from the instruction of this course as well as areas where we are growing. The instructors will share learning outcomes for the course as well as sample course assignments should other groups be interested in replicating or modifying the course. (It should be noted, however, that this course relies heavily on NCBI principles and should not be taught by someone who is not affiliated with NCBI).

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TITLE Advancing Gender Equity through Institutional Change for All at North Carolina A&T State University


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