The Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI) is hosting the 2020 Diversity Forum July 28-30. The forum will focus on outlining the key concepts for social justice education and implementation of inclusive policies and practices. Join and examine systemic power dynamics within a higher education context, and the manifestations of different forms of oppression on individual, group, and societal levels. Please visit ODI's event page for more information, and register online to attend.
June is Pride Month! Join us as we explore ways to promote equity in the learning experiences of LGBTQIA+ students and instructors. Many of the celebrations of Pride 2020 have been put on hold until fall because of the COVID-19 pandemic; but summer instruction is not on hold. We can celebrate pride and remember the Stonewall Uprising that Pride commemorates each year in our teaching and learning here at Pitt. Our center is preparing a range of intersectional resources and tools to support instructors who want to incorporate Pride themes. Please check out our Canvas page for LGBTQIA+ inclusion resources and feel free to link to the resources there. We welcome you to reach out with any suggestions you may have for additions to the page.
On Tuesday, June 8, Chancellor Gallagher and Provost Cudd provided updates on resiliency planning and some further direction for Fall of 2020. As the Chancellor noted, “our classes will rely on a dynamic, hybrid approach to teaching and learning.” For the Fall 2020 term, instructors will need to be prepared to offer both in-person and remote modes of instruction, as social distancing recommendations, and public health concerns can change at any time. We continue to live through a challenging period, but we, the Pitt community, are up to this challenge! The Flex@Pitt model is an instructional model that accommodates in-person and remote instructors and students. Using this model, instructors are encouraged to flexibly leverage face-to-face class meetings with opportunities for remote students to participate. While the University continues with its assessment of learning spaces and determines room capacities and guidelines based on social distancing, we encourage faculty to consider how using video conferencing technology, synchronous online activities, and asynchronous online content can enable engagement for remote and in-person students. Responding to the challenges of the pandemic will take some effort, but together we can do it. Creating your plan now will make it easier to finalize fall course development once all logistical issues have been addressed.
On Wednesday, June 3, Pitt's Offices of Diversity and Inclusion and Health Sciences Diversity held an emergency town hall to address the turmoil across the country in the wake of George Floyd’s death by police in Minnesota. The town hall, entitled "I Can't Breathe: From Agony to Activism," is available on Pitt Diversity’s YouTube channel.
- Read Chancellor Patrick Gallagher's statement on racial injustice and the death of George Floyd.
- Read Dean of Students Kenyon Bonner's message to staff regarding racial injustice.
- The Office of the Provost issued a statement on Pitt's commitment to social justice.
- Read Provost Ann Cudd's message to the Pitt community about police brutality and racist attacks on African Americans.
- The Pitt Police Department issued a statement on the death of George Floyd.
Join us for the fourth and final session of the Mentoring Academy on Tuesday, June 2, as we discuss:
- Best practices in promoting professional development
- Articulating your mentoring philosophy and plan
Dr. Ben Vincent, postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Biological Sciences, talked with Drs. Lizette Muñoz Rojas and Josie Rush about the experience of moving to remote teaching during the spring 2020 term at Pitt. Visit our YouTube channel to learn about the strategies employed by Dr. Vincent, as well as the successes he experienced during the transition.