Selected Workshops/Speaking Engagements

Facilitator/Consultant: An Introduction to Intergroup Dialogue Facilitation. The Michigan Forward in Enhancing Research and Community Equity- MFierce (www.mfierce.org), sponsored by The SexLab- The Center for Sexuality and Health Disparities at The University of Michigan.

January 2015

This hour long workshop with members of MFierce’s Youth Advisory Board (YAB) focused on the basics of intergroup dialogue facilitation in preparations for the YAB to facilitate town hall meetings around topics of HIV/STIs, and structural issues of concern in the region from January through April of 2015.


Facilitator/Consultant: University of Michigan School of Education, sponsored by The National Center for Institutional Diversity

May 2014

This hour and fifteen minute workshop with Wells Fargo employees created opportunities for them to reflect on their own social identities, and identify ways that reflection and feedback from their team members can strengthen the group, as well as move them forward in their thinking and behavior.


Facilitator/Consultant: Increasing our Awareness: University of Michigan School of Public Health Office of Academic Affairs and Student Services.

December 2013

This four hour session for professionals in the Office of Academic Affairs and Student Services at the School of Public Health focused on increasing our awareness of microaggressions ways they can impact the relationships among and between staff and students.


Facilitator/Consultant: Cultural Sensitivity Capstone Session. University of Michigan School of Public Health

November 2013

This hour and a half session for students in the Health Behavior Health Education track, focused on increasing our awareness of microaggressions ways they can impact the relationships between public health workers and community members.


Facilitator/Consultant: Look Before You Leap: Before Taking the Plunge. A University of Michigan School of Public Health Initiative.

August 2013

“The Goal of the sessions is to prepare the students for the diversity of the practice plunge settings, encourage open discussion about different groups they will encounter, and to reach an understanding about the importance of experiential learning in Public Health. We will encourage community building and self-reflection as students will learn about their fellow incoming students and their backgrounds in terms of what they “bring with them” to the School of Public Health and how it can translate into coursework and practice personally, academically, and professionally. Facilitators will be intentional with students in terms of framing that the time spent in the session, on the Practice Plunge, and at the School of Public Health is a precursor for their eventual internship and career. Students will have structured opportunities to connect with each other across difference, and be encouraged to begin considering issues of diversity and social justice, and given tools to assist them in building the honest and genuine relationships required to build relationships with each other, and the members of the communities in which they will be serving.”

For this two-hour session, I gathered a team of other facilitators for a group of 350 students during the School of Public Health’s Orientation Week.


Facilitator: Respect the Rat Days: Bullying Prevention, Conflict Resolution, Diversity, Social Justice & Leadership. Facilitated through the Intergroup Dialogue/Social Change Agents Program.

October 2012, November 2012, December 2012, March 2013, April 2013, May 2013 at Huron High School in Ann Arbor.

“The Goal of the Respect the Rat half-day sessions is to encourage community building and bullying prevention among the students at Huron High School. The day seeks to provide students with structured opportunities to connect with each other and their teachers across difference, to encourage them to begin considering issues of diversity and social justice, and to encourage non-violent communication that emphasizes honest sharing and genuine listening.”

Each Session lasted 5 hours.


Guest Lecturer: SW 210: Introduction to Social Work in the Oakland University Social Work Program

April 2012

Rochester, MI

Developmental Disabilities and Social Justice: “Everyone Needs a Little Help.”

This two-hour interactive lecture to 40+ undergraduate social work students focused on social identities and issues of ability including discussing the importance of fostering self and other awareness, the social construction of disability, disability as a social justice issue, how the intersection of race, gender, class, sexual orientation, religion, age, and other identities can impact people’s experiences with power, privilege, & oppression, and ways in which social workers can use themselves as allies.


Moderator: MRH Panel Event–AllyHOOD: A Making Race Heard Event at the University of Michigan School of Social Work.

March 2012

Ann Arbor, MI

AllyHOOD

During this two-hour event, I engaged with faculty, students, and community members and co-moderated a panel consisting of social workers, educators, and community activists in discussion on the topic of Allyhood in terms of Anti-Racist action and how it relates to our lives personally & professionally.

An example of topical questions for the night include:

a.) “How do you define Ally and in your experience, what does Allyhood look and feel like? (you are welcome to offer personal experience when having an ally was important, or where having an ally created conflict(s).”

b.)” How do you define the role of an ally?”

c.) “What challenges do you experience, if any with being an ally or accepting support from allies?”

d.) “What can others do to be an affective ally?”


Facilitator: Peace in Action Here & At Home: Translating Passion and Thoughts into Appropriate Action. A University of Michigan MLK Symposium Event.

January 2012

Ann Arbor, MI

Peace in Action Here & At Home: Translating Passion and Thought into Appropriate Action

“The logical consequence of study and thought is action. Otherwise, this whole business of education is a sham,” stated Western Michigan University President James Miller when he introduced Martin Luther King, Jr. for a 1963 address on social justice. With this in mind, how can and do we translate cognition and awareness into action and practice? MLK recognized that peace is not passive, but active, noting: “True peace is not the absence of tension, it is the presence of justice.” So how can we demonstrate peace in action locally and globally and what are our challenges? How do cultural norms here and at home affect our action?”

This two-hour session explored these questions through interactive engagement and dialogue, and provided concrete tools to build capacity to translate thought into action here and at home.


Facilitator: Making Race Heard Summit 2011 at The University of Michigan School of Social Work

December 2011

Ann Arbor, MI

Why are all the _____ kids sitting together in the classroom?

“While the classroom setting is one that aims to encourage diversity in thought and perspectives, race is a topic that is frequently avoided. Sometimes individuals do not feel equipped to effectively facilitate and/or participate in a discussion about the direct impacts of race on our lives. Professors and students alike are often unclear of what exactly their roles are as members of the classroom–“should I step up or step back?” is a common question with which we are faced.”

This workshop addressed how we can all take ownership of creating a greater sense of community, by understanding our own and others’ roles in the classroom.


Alumni Panelist: University of Michigan School of Social Work: A Making Race Heard Event

November 2011

Ann Arbor, MI

Resisting Oppression in Class, Field, & The Broader Society

Engaged current University of Michigan School of Social Work students about the impacts of oppression in my personal and professional experiences. I also discussed ways to challenge oppression in multiple contexts.


Facilitator: Making Race Heard at the University of Michigan School of Social Work

October 2011

Ann Arbor, MI

Uncovering Privilege

Facilitated honest conversations with social work students and members of the surrounding community about identifying privilege in multiple areas of our lives. This dialogue also addressed how our privileges can impact our personal and professional lives not only as social workers, but as members of our communities as well.


Presenter: Oakland University Center for Multicultural Initiatives (CMI) Men’s Retreat 2011

September 2011

Ortonville, MI

  • Presented a workshop to 27 male undergraduate students of color called “The Tipping Point” in which focused on those ‘crossroads” we might encounter in life in which we are forced to make a choice.
  • Facilitated discussions on personal responsibility, conflict management & resolution, good decision-making and avoidance of self-defeating behaviors.
  • Participated in relationship building activities which fostered unity & collaboration.

Campus Day Panelist: Delray Youth Campus Day sponsored by The Detroit Initiative

July 2011

Ann Arbor, MI

  • Spoke to a diverse group of young people ages 13-18 from the Delray Neighborhood House in southwest Detroit about my unique experiences as a college student (including successes and challenges) and the road that brought me to where I am today.
  • Engaged the youth in a conversations about their own learning and experiences with school, their thoughts about college, and their future plans while emphasizing the importance of lifelong learning and continuing education.

Facilitator: Making Race Heard– A University of Michigan Student Union Sponsored initiative

July 2011

Ann Arbor, MI

  • Co-facilitated difficult conversations with students, community members, faculty, and staff on the topic of race and the extent that it is or is not discussed in the classroom, as well as the social justice implications of the issue.
  • Explored the roles of power dynamics that exist in our lives, and when these are in place, who’s responsibility it is to speak up, as well as how those different dynamics can make it challenging for different people involved to speak up.
  • Addressed the experiences of students, community members, faculty, and staff within and outside of the university community with race and racism, and explored ways in which we could proactively and effectively address issues of race and racism not only in the workplace, but also in our daily interactions with others.

March 2011

Ann Arbor, MI

  • Co-facilitated a two-part series of honest discussions with students, community members, faculty, and staff on the topic of race and the extent that it is or is not discussed in the classroom, as well as the social justice implications of the issue.
  • Addressed the experiences of students, community members, faculty, and staff within and outside of the university community with race and racism, and explored ways in which we could proactively and effectively address race not only in the workplace, but also in our daily interactions with others.

Student Panelist: Faculty Development Workshop at the University of Michigan School of Social Work

March 2011

Ann Arbor, MI

In a balanced panel of students and faculty, presented a student’s perspective in talking with professors in the school of social work concerning how to address difficult conversations as they arise in the classroom.

Spoke publicly about successes and challenges I faced in addressing difficult conversations in the classroom, and offered suggestions on ways I felt that faculty engagement could be more successful in challenging times.


Our World Today Conference–Sponsored by the Center for Multicultural Initiatives (CMI) at Oakland University

The Our World Today Conference is a student led conference that focused on areas relevant to underrepresented college students.

February 2008

Rochester, MI

Created and facilitated a presentation entitled “Black Exploitation Television (B.E.T.): Black Women and Exploitation in the Media” which featured the story of Sara Baartman and established links between past and present exploitation of African-American women in the media.

Facilitated an open forum which explored the possible psychological and social effects of negative depictions of African-American Women in the media on people of color, as well as society as a whole.

February 2007

Filmed, produced, and screened a 10 minute documentary entitled “The N-Word: Racial Slur or Term of Endearment?” which featured students and staff on campus giving their opinions and insight on the issue.

Shot the film in an objective manner for the purpose of encouraging positive and critical discussion.

Facilitated an open discussion regarding the video and topic in question which encouraged critical thinking concerning the subject, challenged belief systems, and impacted all involved.