Humanity is like a Patchwork Quilt

Each patchwork piece contributes to holding the quilt together, yet each is unique.
Subscribe to RSS
Back to Humanity is like a Patchwork Quilt

Posts Tagged ‘olympic college’

Microaggressions and More at the Olympic College’s Diversity Conference

Sunday, July 6th, 2014

 

Olympic College Diversity Conference – Great Job!OCDiversityConfProgam&Bag

 

Olympic College’s first Diversity Conference was very well done, with so much good thought provoking information I am still processing it all.

 

 

 

 

What I enjoyed most about the conference were the two keynote speakers: Dr. Joy DeGruy and Yoshiko Harden.

The first keynote speaker was  Dr. Joy DeGruy

From her website: “Dr. Joy DeGruy is a nationally and internationally renowned researcher, educator, author and presenter.”

The topic of her presentation was Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome
From the Olympic College Diversity Conference Program “The theory of Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome suggest that centuries of slavery followed by systemic racism and oppression have resulted in mutigenerational adaptive behaviors – some of which have been positive and reflective of resilience, and others that are detrimental and destructive.”

I was enlightened by her presentation and have bought her book on the subject, Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome, America’s Legacy of Enduring Injury and Healing.

  The second keynote was given by Yoshiko Harden, Vice President for Diversity at Bellevue College

Her speech title was “Good Intentions Aren’t Enough; The Damaging Effects of Microaggressions”

Microaggression was a new concept to me, and some of you may not be familiar with it either.

From Wikipedia – “Microaggression is a theory that hypothesizes that specific interactions between those of different races, cultures, genders or sexual orientation can be interpreted as small acts of mostly non-physical aggression; the term was coined by Chester M. Pierce[1] in 1970.”

Yoshiko Harden OC Diversity Conf

From the Olympic College Diversity Conference Program: “Often it is well intended, “nice” people who tend to perpetuate microagressions”
According to the speech description “Participants will learn to identify both individual and institutional forms of microagressions, and learn practical and useful strategies to address, interrupt,a nd dismantle them.” Yoshiko Harden’s Keynote speech did all of that for me.

 

 

 

The topic of microaggressions found its way into a couple of the sessions, and I attended two of those.

One of the things I like about the idea of microagressions is it helps make sense of something I have seen and felt, but couldn’t find a way to describe. One thing that comes to mind for me is how I feel when someone says to me “Wow, you are an engineer?!  Good for you!”  (Usually interpreted as ‘you are smart for a woman’) I also like that the concept helps break down our overwhelming anti-inclusion systems into bits we can makes sense of, and find ways to each make a real difference.

There were two videos presented at the conference that showed, in a humorous way, some examples of microagression.

What Kind of Asian Are You? (this video was posted just over a hear ago and has over 7 millions hits)

Top 100 – Things White People Say to Black People

 

 

OCDiversityConfSessionTracks

There were so many good sessions, and I was impressed by the presenters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I look forward to attending the Olympic College Diversity Conference next year!

 

~ Marcie


Olympic College’s Regional Diversity Conference

Friday, May 23rd, 2014

Olympic College is having their first diversity conference on June 26-27, 2014.

The theme is “Are Your Roots Showing: Exploring Diversity in the Puget Sound Region”

OCdiversityconf2014outlinedFrom the Olympic College Diversity Advisory Council Web Site, the day and a half of conference “will offer participants the opportunity to enhance their understanding and skills in the areas of diversity, inclusion, multiculturalism and social justice.”

 

 

The conference schedule includes two speakers, Dr. Joy DeGruy and Yoshiko Harden.

Here is a little bit about them:

Dr. Joy DeGruy

From Dr. Joy DeGruy’s website:

Dr. Joy DeGruy is a nationally and internationally renowned researcher, educator, author and presenter. With over twenty years of practical experience as a professional in the field of social work, she gives practical insight into various cultural and ethnic groups that form the basis of contemporary American society.

Dr. Joy DeGruy  is the keynote speaker during the conference opening morning.

 

Yoshiko Harden, Vice President for Diversity at Bellevue College

From the Bellevue College website:

Harden, with over a decade of experience as a student affairs practitioner, comes to us from Highline Community College, in Des Moines, where she has held several positions, including director of multicultural services and student development.

“One of my primary goals is to increase access and success for all students, but particularly for historically marginalized groups,” she says.

Yoshiko Harden  is speaking during dinner on the first day of the conference.

 

OCdiversityconf2014poster

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

~ Marcie

 


Dr. Michael Eric Dyson at Olympic College

Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

 

Dr. Michael Eric Dyson spoke at Olympic College this past Monday, and I came away inspired and energized.  The Olympic College Multicultural Program sponsored the event, and Dan Johnson, the Director of Multicultural & Student Programs at Olympic College, introduced Dr. Dyson.

The program title was Politics, Diversity and the Disenfranchised in America, and Dr. Dyson mentioned how fitting it was that the title “sandwiches ‘Diversity’ in between ‘Politics’ and ‘Disenfranchised.’”

Besides being an author and speaker, Dr. Michael Eric Dyson is on the faculty of the Department of Sociology at Georgetown University in Washington, DC.

 

Dr. Dyson defined politics as “the fight over just distribution of vital resources to a vulnerable population in a time of crisis.”  He stressed that critical thinking is essential for all of us, so that we can sort out issues and events, put them into context and understand why people do what they do.

One of the many things Dr. Dyson said that resonated with me was: “The disenfranchisement of some is the undermining of all.”

It reminded me of something Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote in his Letter from a Birmingham Jail: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

We are all connected, and probably more alike than not.  Social justice is something for all of us to be concerned about because in the long run it affects us all.

A highlight of the evening for me was during the question and answer period when a white man stood up to ask a question of Dr. Dyson and mentioned that he “got down with diversity when he married a black man.”  The couple has been together for 25 years and they both got a warm response from Dr. Dyson and from the audience.

It was heartening to me to hear Dr. Dyson speak so eloquently and inclusively about diversity. Dr. Dyson has written many books, and choosing one was not easy – I bought Can You Hear Me Now, and am very much looking forward to reading it.

While he infused humor throughout the presentation, Dr. Dyson never failed to instill the audience with the gravity of the issues facing our communities.

~ Marcie