Lectures and Seminars

As part of its educational mission, the Center sponsors lectures, seminars, brown bag talks, symposia, and conferences. The lectures are open to the public and focus on broad diversity topics, and they feature nationally prominent scholars and policy analysts. The brown bags, seminars, and workshops are specialized, small meetings with targeted topics for members of the University of Delaware community.

Past Events

Spring 2017 Campus Climate Lecture

Alicia Dowd, Penn State University

March 21, 2017,“From Diversity to Equity: Engaging the ‘Race Question’ in Higher Education”

This talk explored the ways college administrators, faculty, and staff members make sense of equity and accountability when they are participating in constructive attempts to address higher education’s legacy of racism and contemporary role in sustaining discriminatory practices. It is about the steps practitioners can take to remediate the educational practices that are resulting in inequitable educational experiences and outcomes among racial and ethnic groups in the United States.

Dr. Alicia Dowd is a Professor of Education at Penn State University’s Center for the Study of Higher Education. Strategies for promoting racial equality on university campuses came to life in her presentation. Stories of university faculty, staff, and administrators who developed the identity of “equity-minded” change agents illustrate the benefits of moving from diversity to equity as a standard of practice to address intractable problems of institutionalized racism.

Fall 2016 Campus Climate Lecture Series

Bryant T. Marks Sr., Morehouse College

October 27, 2016,“If Opportunity Isn’t Knocking, Then How Can I Achieve?”

Dr. Marks, who associate professor of psychology and director of the Morehouse Male Initiative at Morehouse College, will speak on opportunity gaps, achievement gaps and the educational outcomes of underrepresented and first generation college students. 

The term “achievement gap” is often used to describe the differences in grades and standardized test scores among groups of different races and socio-economic status.

His presentation included research-based descriptions of the differences between achievement gaps and opportunity gaps that exist throughout the academic pipelines of underrepresented and first generation college students. He also will provide recommendations for closing the opportunity gap at the individual and institutional levels. 

Read the UDaily article here.

Angela Duckworth, University of Pennsylvania

October 11, 2016,“The Power of Grit”

Duckworth, author of Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, is a professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania, and founder and scientific director of the Character Lab. Her book is a New York Times bestseller.

In the book, she explores how grit can be predictive of achievement, especially in challenging contexts in which stamina is key. For instance, she says, gritty cadets are more likely to persist at West Point Military Academy, gritty students in the Chicago public schools are more likely to graduate, and gritty competitors are more likely to advance to the finals of the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

Duckworth told her audience that growth does not happen just because someone performs an activity over and over. She highlighted the importance of deliberate practice and explained that people often fail at the “getting feedback” stage. According to Duckworth, this crucial stage is often overlooked. She suggested that it is a teacher’s, coach’s, or parent’s responsibility to provide feedback that encourages perseverance by suggesting concrete improvements.

Read the UDaily article here.

Spring 2016 Diversity Lecture Series

As part of our mission “to promote academic research and scholarship that facilitate dialogues about and understanding of the social and academic impact of diversity,” CSD announces our spring lectures focusing on several aspects of diversity in higher education.

Howard Stevenson, University of Pennsylvania

March 1, 2016“If Elephants Could Talk: Racial Literacy”– co-sponsored with the College and School of Education

Dr. Howard Stevenson is the Constance Clayton Professor of Urban Education, Professor of Africana Studies, and former Chair of the Applied Psychology and Human Development Division in the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Stevenson’s recently published book, “Promoting Racial Literacy in Schools: Differences that Make a Difference” focuses on how to address racial conflicts and racial stress in educational contexts. His work provides strategies to classroom teachers, educational leaders, psychologists and parents on how to develop culturally relevant, strength-based responses and interventions that promote healthier school climates.

March 2, 2016, Workshop – This event was for faculty, graduate students, and staff to discuss what strategies have worked in developing racial literacy across different educational contexts.

PowerPoint from this workshop.

Sylvia Hurtado, UCLA – 2016 Lecture on Excellence in Diversity

March 16, 2016, “Social Justice and a Diverse Democracy”

Professor of Education and former director of the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI) at UCLA, Dr. Hurtado is a strong and consistent voice for the importance of diversity to the educational and civic mission of higher education. From a strong research base, she has informed the Supreme Court on the necessity and benefit of diversity, and colleges and universities across the country on creating positive campus climate and their benefit to the teaching and learning of all students. She is an influential leader in developing diversity and inclusion policy in higher education.

 Read the UDaily article or download the PowerPoint.

Ana Mari Cauce, President, University of Washington – 2016 Distinguished Lecture on Diversity in Higher Education

April 22, 2016, 11:30 am, Trabant Theatre, Trabant University Center

As newly elected president of the University of Washington, and former faculty member at UD, Ana Mari Cauce ascends to the presidency with the firm belief that the university community of faculty, students and staff, have “…the power and responsibility–individually and collectively–to create an inclusive society where all can achieve their full potential.” Her commitment to providing leading-edge student experience, research and scholarship with global impact, and infusing the university with a commitment to innovation are central to her presidency. A child of Cuban refugees, President Cauce offers the proposition that–We can only all be better off when we really are all better off.

Read the UDaily article here. Video available here!

Scott Page, University of Michigan

May 5, 2016

The Leonid Hurwicz Collegiate Professor of Complex Systems, Political Science and Economics at the University of Michigan, Dr. Page also directs the Center for the Study of Complex Systems. His book, “The Difference” is a classic argument for the benefits of diversity. He not only demonstrates that groups with a range of perspectives outperform groups of like-minded experts, but he shows practical ways to apply diversity to a host of problems to the benefit of all.

Read the UDaily article. Dr. Page’s presentation.

2015 Lecture on Excellence in Diversity

The University of Delaware Center for the Study of Diversity, in collaboration with the Vice Provost for Diversity, hosted Robert Sellers, Vice Provost for Equity, Inclusion, and Academic Affairs at the University of Michigan. Dr. Sellers delivered the inaugural Lecture on Excellence in Diversity on Monday October 5, 2015.

Read the UDaily article here.

Scholarship that drives diversity practice