Center for Minorities and People with Disabilities in Information Technology
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May 2019
Volume 9, Issue 5
Welcome to the May 2019 issue of the CMD-IT newsletter. This month is Mental Health Awareness Month.  To remind us of the importance of self care, this month we feature an interview with Sabrina Coleman, Founder and Managing Principal, Mahoghany Coaching and Development.  We have also included some resources available to members of our community shared with us by AccessComputing.
We are also pleased to announce that we just completed our 2019 CMD-IT Academic Careers Workshop, the 11th in the series.  Thanks to everyone who participated.
Also a reminder, the CMD-IT University Award applications are due June 1st.  

Best Regards,
CMD-IT Leadership   
Position Announcement:
Executive Director
CMD-IT is seeking candidates for the Executive Director position. Reporting to the CEO and President of CMD-IT, the Executive Director works collaboratively with Valerie Taylor and the Board of Directors to set the strategic direction for the organization, manage the staff, and support the organization's consistent achievement of its mission and financial objectives. CMD-IT is partnering with Summit Search Solutions, Inc. on this search. More information about this opportunity can be obtained through the search firm, as indicated in the position profile . Summit Search welcomes nominations or recommendations for this role.
2019 CMD-IT
Academic Careers Workshop

The 11th CMD-IT Academic Career Workshop for Underrepresented Junior Faculty and Senior Graduate Students was held May 16-19 in Houston Texas.   The goal of the workshops is to mentor under-represented assistant- and associate-level faculty and senior doctoral students about the academic career ladder. The workshop included panels of diverse senior faculty talking about the tenure and promotion process, how to launch a research program, professionalism, a detailed session on proposal writing and a discussion about alternative career paths. 
The 2019 Academic Career Workshop had 18 PhD candidates, Assistant and Associate professors participate.  Our presenters  included Dan Garcia (UC Berkeley), Fay Cobb Payton (NSF), Elsa Villa (UTEP), Valerie Taylor (Argonne/UChicago), Jeff Forbes (Duke), Jeanine Cook (Sandia), Timothy Pinkston (USC), Chad Jenkins (UMich) and Illya HIcks (Rice University).
The workshops are funded by the NSF CE21 grant.  
Practicing Self Care in 
Computer Science
In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month we spent some time with Sabrina Coleman, Founder and Managing Principal of Mahoghany Coaching & Development. Sabrina's coaching and development practice is committed to helping women thrive in the workplace and beyond; with an emphasis on underrepresented women who are often the least supported. Sabrina has also led many Professional Development Workshops at Tapia Conferences.

What is self-care? I define self-care as the intersection between selfishness and selflessness. Many women, particularly women of color feel guilty about doing things for ourselves because we have so many competing priorities with family, work, community, etc. So, it's easier to let this go; because this is how many of us have been socialized as women. And somehow, self-care seems to have become a synonym with selfishness. However, selfishness is an unhealthy, while self-care is healthy. And most times, we simply just don't give ourselves permission or take time out of our busy schedules to practice self-care; believing always being busy is being productive (once again, not synonymous) and that; when we're always busy and taking on more, this is what's required to be successful. In today's world, it's almost impossible for us not to be busy; however, it's because of this, that its more important than ever, that we make time to integrate self-care into our daily practices. This is what's truly required for success health, sustainability and personal well-being.

Why is self-care an issue in our community?  Catalyst published a research report in 2018 on the emotional tax levied on Asian, Black, Latinx, and multiracial professionals in the United States as they aspire to advance and contribute to their organizations. An important aspect of the emotional tax is the state of being on guard-consciously preparing to deal with potential bias or discrimination. (Dnika J. Travis and Jennifer Thorpe-Moscon, Day-to-day Experiences of Emotional Tax Among Women and Men of Color in the Workplace (Catalyst, 2018). The report also showed that people anticipate bias based on their gender, physical appearance, physical ability, age, parental status, sexual orientation and religious beliefs; and this phenomenon is even more heightened with black professionals. The study shows that emotional tax has a direct impact on people's well-being with a negative impact on sleep and other aspects of mental and physical health.

Culturally there is also a stigma against self-care amongst many of us, particularly women of color with many of us playing multiple roles in our communities, and may not have the luxury of asking for help or displaying vulnerability; especially in the workplace, where quite frankly, it isn't always safe to do so. Self-care is often perceived as something white women do, although this is starting to shift; the shift isn't happening quick enough.
What can we do on a personal level to make self-care part of our lives?  We need to recognize that self-care is our responsibility, and commit to it. There are things that leaders can do within organizations to improve inclusion, but ultimately, we are responsible for taking care of ourselves.

What are some self-care things we can do?  I've given this a lot of thought. Here are my recommendations of things you can do.

1. Choose to respond. If someone interrupts you in a meeting or cuts you off when you're already running late for work in commuter traffic. You can get upset, cussing, yelling and gesturing, which is one reaction; or you can instead choose to respond (or not); through controlled breathing. Breathe in to a count of 4 and out to a count of 4. When we engage our breathing, we have the opportunity to respond vs react to the stimulus which engages a higher part of our brain that can serve us better in these situations.
2. Develop and build resilience. I do this through mindfulness, prayer and exercise. Mindfulness has huge benefits. The mind-body-spirit connection is super important. When you've built up resistance through spiritual practices and physical release, you're less likely to carry stress in mind-body, able to be fully present and grounded which again enables us to be less reactive to negative stimuli.
3. Set time aside for self-reflection. Give yourself a mental break and to check in with yourself. I do at least 30 minutes of self-reflection before I get out of bed every morning. I also give myself time to think about my day ahead and get in touch with how I'm feeling. This is more to get myself organized, and not about rumination. I have found this to be one of my best practices, because it makes space for creativity; as some of my best ideas come to me first thing in the morning. So, I also keep a journal next to my bed so I can capture them; because when I don't, I lose them. Of course, it doesn't have to be 30-minutes, as many of us would prefer to get extra rest, but any extra time that isn't rushed will do.
4.  Take time to do an emotion al audit. Commit to 1-3 days of paying a ttention to your emotions and how they're impacting you and your environment. Do a simple practice of capturing the emotions you've felt during the last three hours and what triggered these emotions. Can't do something about something you don't know about. This practice gives you really good insight and provides you with emotional intelligence for self-management.
5. Don't grab your phone first thing. Don't look at your calendar, check your email or read your texts before you get out of bed in the morning. Slow things down.
6. Take a 10-minute walk at lunch. Try and take a break a few times a day to walk and release stressful energy. The Energy Project recommends our brains work best when you take a renewal break - 10-15 minutes every 90 minutes.
7. Take mental he alth days, don't wait till you are sick to call in sick.
Mental Health Awareness Month Resources
AccessComputing, helps students with disabilities
successfully pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in computing fields, and works to increase the capacity of post secondary institutions and other organizations to fully include students with disabilities in computing courses and programs.
In This Issue
#Tapia2019 Conference Due Dates
May 29 - Scholarship Decisions Announced

May 30 - Registration Opens! 

June 24 - Early Bird Pricing Ends!
We are pleased to extend our congratulations to these members of our community!

Jennifer Chayes, Technical Fellow and Managing Director, Microsoft Research on her election to the National Academy of Science

Charles Isbell was named Dean and John P. Imlay Jr Chair in the College of Computing, Georgia Tech

William H. Robinson will lead the Office for Inclusive Excellence as interim vice provost for strategic initiatives, Vanderbilt University

Telle Whitney, former CEO and president of was named the 2019 IEEE Honorary Membership Recipient
Job Postings
University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign

Khoury College of Computer Sciences,  Northeastern University

Division of Computing Instruction in the College of Computing, Georgia Tech

Assistant and Associate Professors
University of North Texas

Professor and Head of Department of Computer Science and Engineering
Texas A&M University

Assistant or Associate Professors
University of Washington

Tenure-Track Faculty Positions in Computer Science
Williams College

Tenure-track Assistant or Associate Professor of Computer Science and a Non-Tenure-track Instructional Position
 State University

Tenure/Tenure-Track Positions 
Vanderbilt University

Email job postings to .
Community Calendar
1 June 2019

28 July - 1 August 2019

18 - 21 September 2019

2 - 4 October 2019

15 - 17 October 2019
2019 NSF Cybersecurity Summit
30 Oct - 3 Nov 2019

Want us to l
ist your events or due dates, please email us.
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