If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.--Anne Bradstreet
black field white serif text THE DC
The Davis Center advances broad campus engagement with complex issues of identity, history, and cultures as they affect intellectual, creative, and social life.
Greetings Awesome Ephs!

Spring is on the horizon and, it may be cold, but the sun is out and so are the people!

This month we celebrate Women's History Month, Maya Shivaratri, and Deaf History Month (March 13-April 13).

As we celebrate, we also need to bring greater attention to the significant impact of the race-based pandemic: increased violence against Asian Americans. Please read the complete statement below (written by Asian American Students in Action) to educate yourself and also to consider the resources for mental health support and how to take action. Stay tuned for efforts to further address anti-Asian violence at Williams.

In this issue we also share news from the QSU and Cultures of Williams, help you to create a Happiness Hub, highlight BIPOC who are passionate about getting out, introduce you to Billy Sanders, and update you on job postings, events, and opportunities in our local community (psst...Isabel Wilkerson is speaking TONIGHT!!).

Read on!
MinCo News
Statement on Racism and
Violence Against Asian Americans

Stop AAPI Hate, a center that tracks and responds to incidents of hate, violence, harassment, discrimination, shunning, and child bullying against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders throughout the United States, has received more than 2,800 reports of hate incidents on Asian Americans since March 19th, 2020. 

Recently, one 84-year old Thai man, Vichar Ratanapakdee, died when he was shoved to the ground during his daily morning walks on January 28th. On January 31st, three Asian American elders––a 91-year old man, 60-year old man, and a 55-year-old woman––were assaulted in Oakland, California by one man. CNN also reports more than 20 assaults and robberies on Asian Americans in Oakland, according to officials. In Portland, dozens of Asian-owned businesses have been vandalized in recent weeks. There are many more cases that are not mentioned here. AASiA condemns the sudden spike in hate incidents on Asian Americans fueled by heightened racism during COVID-19 and calls for solidarity and reflection on our campus and in our nation. 

A large percentage of our own students and faculty at Williams College are Asian American, many from the Bay Area and NYC where many hate crimes occurred. When seeing the news of Asian Americans being attacked in broad daylight, they are stripped of their individuality and status as a person and instead seen as the source of the virus. The misconception perpetuated by current political rhetoric enforces that Asia is the source of COVID-19. Standing against these acts that are both ethically and factually wrong and actively scrutinizing our own racial biases will not only safeguard against more of these incidents but also help the anti-racism fight.

Asian Americans have long been subjected to stereotypes that reduce communities into dehumanizing tropes—the model minority myth being one of them. Recent acts of racial violence are a continuation of this pattern that indicate a broader issue of a lack of education and awareness in the general public surrounding the AAPI communities. We at AASiA feel it is necessary to stand with the Asian American students at Williams, not only to show support for the community in light of recent events but also to bring to greater attention the work of student activists who have been fighting for institutional change at Williams for over three decades. 

Finally, it is crucial that we respond to these incidents through neither attacking other communities nor erasing our own communities. We reject instruments of white supremacy, such as the model minority myth, that serve to break alliances between and control communities of color. We must strive for non-transactional solidarity by addressing and working to end antiblackness, foundational to white supremacy, and other forms of oppression both within and outside our own AAPI communities. Our liberation depends on the liberation of all. AASiA stands with all other minoritized groups and organizations and commits to continuously practicing critical reflection. 

Resources for Mental Health and Support:

Resources to Learn More: 

Resources to Take Action: 

Links to Relief Funds and Other Outreach Community Organizations to Follow: 
Oakland Chinatown Coalition (IG: @oakchinatowncoalition)
AAPI Women Lead (IG: @aapiwomenlead)
Asian Health Services (IG: @asianhealthservices)
Asian Pacific Environmental Network (IG: @apen4ej) 
Asians 4 Black Lives (IG: @asians4blklives) 

Signed by:
Cultures of Williams:
An opportunity to co-host a podcast!
Cultures of Williams is a podcast that interviews international students at Williams on their culture, hometown, and experiences at Williams. We can be found on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.

Cultures of Williams is looking for a co-host for season 2! The season will feature an array of countries not already recorded in season 1 and will be recorded during next semester (Fall 2021). If you would like to co-host or know someone who will be a good fit, please fill out this google form (it shouldn't take longer than 30 seconds). Thanks!
QSU now offering office hours!
Starting this Wednesday, the QSU will be hosting drop-in office hours. This time isn't set by any schedules: maybe you'll talk, or enjoy some music or learn a new dance move together--maybe it'll be a game, or brainstorming great new programming--YOU ARE WELCOME! Click here to learn more about this great opportunity!
On-Campus MinCo students sweet start to the semester
During the early period of this semester, students on campus are required to quarantine. To help sweeten up this period, the DC team arranged for each on-campus MinCo member to get a box of Girl Scout cookies. The process of getting cookies into the hands of folk was a challenge as we are diligently observant of COVID-19 safety protocols. We'd like to give a big thank you to the OCL team as well a few CEFs as they put in hours of organizing, labeling, and communicating with different college partners to make this cookie event successful. Thank you CEF Cyrus and CEF Fiona!

In case you're into data for data's sake, or just curious what are the most popular cookies among Williams students that also happen to be on-campus with an affiliation with a MinCo group (336 responses)...well, have I got good news for you:
March 20th is the International Day of Happiness!! So, how about we celebrate by making a personal Happiness Hub! For the last year I have been curating a list of positive affirmations and quotes to help me to center my values and reframe negative situations. Positive affirmations can be a powerful tool to guide one through tough times. So, I attached a good amount of the affirmations that resonate with me. Sometime in the near future, print out the affirmations in this doc (preferably in color), cut out the affirmations that resonate with you, and put them in a small box on your desk or nightstand, add them to your screensaver, or put them on your vision board - wherever you have easy access to them. If you put them in a box, keep it close so you can pick a random note whenever you feel the need.

Want to go deeper? Search for affirmations that resonate with you. Consider storing in a google doc. Print out as necessary and add to your box/vision board.

Want to learn more? Read this article on using positive affirmations to lower stress.

Want to talk about it? I have office hours on Wednesdays from 1-3pm! Join me by using this link!! 

Be well,
Dear Davis Center Times Readership,

My name is Aseel Abulhab, and I'm the Assistant Director of the DC. Welcome to Williams Signs! I discovered a passion for sign language and working with the D/deaf community at the end of high school, and have since had the opportunity to finish a complete course in ASL, attend a summer course at Gallaudet University, and undertake two international fellowships devoted to D/deaf access to education. Each newsletter, I will share a new phrase or sign in ASL and/or a fun fact. If you have any additional questions or want to engage on the subject, please reach out to me at aa9. Happy signing!

This week, check out Billy Sanders' story. He is CODA (Child of Deaf Adults), became an interpreter, and offered interpreter services at protests last summer.

Did you know among visitors of National Parks in 2019, that only 7% of the visitors were Black? 77% of visitors were White. This statistic means that across the board, POCs aren't visiting these amazing, magical places that belong to every one of us. Unfortunately, many likely feel like they don't belong. Well, anybody that knows me also knows that this is a common issue that I harp upon: why aren't there more folk that look like me outside? Although others have been met with discrimination, I have had the fortunate experience of an outdoors community that has always been friendly and open-minded. So, I am here to be a voice to tell you that the outdoors welcomes you: you belong out there!

One of my visions, as I ventured to become The DC Program Coordinator, was to see more "unlikely hikers" sharing the magic of the outdoors with me. In an attempt to whet your appetites for embracing the outdoors as an element of the "Williams College experience" (remember, we're basically on the Appalachian Trail!!) and maybe inspire some burgeoning MinCo leaders to work with me in the upcoming years for more inclusive outdoors programming, I'm just going to share a few videos. Also, if you're on Instagram, make sure to follow my friend Dragonsky (yes! hikers have trail names), who just started their Appalachia Trail adventure--a Black, Queer, Fem solo hiker who is regularly updating and sharing the trail magic...they'll be finishing Georgia this week...talk about a baddie!
The Community Engagement Fellows are a Davis Center-trained, peer-to-peer diversity education group. The DC Community Engagement Fellows work closely with the DC staff and are part of the Davis Center’s effort to provide education for the campus on issues of identity, power, and privilege in order to build a more inclusive community.
The Office of Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Williams College dedicates itself to a community where all members can thrive. We work to eliminate harmful bias and discrimination, close opportunity gaps, and advance critical conversations and initiatives that promote inclusion, equity, and social justice on campus and beyond.
Born out of the students' advocacy and protests of students, the Davis Center continues to fulfill its mission by working closely with student organizations. Included in those groups is the Minority Coalition (“MinCo”), student affinity groups united under the umbrella of MinCo. The Davis Center provides advising and logistical support for these groups.

MinCo provides a more unified voice against prejudice and discrimination against marginalized students by serving as a mechanism for affinity groups to come together in organizational, social, academic and political spheres. MinCo facilitates cooperation and communication among its member organizations, the campus and the Williamstown community and is an active voice in constructing a stronger community more aware of minority concerns.
Upcoming Events, Opportunities & Deadlines:
Community, Professional & Learning Opportunities
On ‘Caste’: A Virtual Conversation with Isabel Wilkerson
Tue, March 16th, 2021
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Isabel Wilkerson, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Humanities Medal, is the author of The New York Times bestsellers The Warmth of Other Suns and Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents. A gifted storyteller, Wilkerson captivates audiences with the universal human story of migration and reinvention, as well as the unseen hierarchies that have divided us as a nation, in order to find a way to transcend them. She has become an impassioned voice for demonstrating how history can help us understand ourselves, our country and our current era of upheaval.

Her latest book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents, published in August 2020 to critical acclaim, examines the unspoken caste system that has shaped America and shows how a hierarchy of social divisions still defines our lives today. Wilkerson brings the past’s complexities to vivid life through her passionate research and her profound gift for connecting with audiences of all backgrounds. Caste is being adapted into a Netflix film directed, written, and produced by Ava DuVernay.

Open to the public. All are welcome. No registration required. Please see the zoom link at the bottom of the page.
Isabel Wilkerson, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Humanities Medal, is the author of The New York Times bestsellers The Warmth of Other Suns and Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents. A gifted storyteller, Wilkerson captivates audiences with the universal human story of migration and reinvention, as well as the unseen hierarchies that have divided us as a nation, in order to find a way to transcend them. She has become an impassioned voice for demonstrating how history can help us understand ourselves, our country and our current era of upheaval.

Her latest book, Caste: The Origins of our Discontents, published in August 2020 to critical acclaim, examines the unspoken caste system that has shaped America and shows how a hierarchy of social divisions still defines our lives today. Wilkerson brings the past’s complexities to vivid life through her passionate research and her profound gift for connecting with audiences of all backgrounds. Caste is being adapted into a Netflix film directed, written, and produced by Ava DuVernay.

Wilkerson won the Pulitzer Prize for her work as Chicago Bureau Chief of The New York Times in 1994, making her the first Black woman in the history of American journalism to win a Pulitzer Prize and the first African-American to win for individual reporting in the history of American journalism.

In conferring Wilkerson the 2015 National Humanities Medal, the National Endowment for the Humanities honored her “for championing the stories of an unsung history. Her masterful combination of intimate human narratives with broader societal trends allows us to measure the epic migration of a people by its vast impact on our Nation and on each individual life.”

Isabel Wilkerson will participate in a virtual conversation with Hari Ramesh ’11, a College Fellow in Social Studies at Harvard University, followed by a moderated audience Q&A. This event is sponsored by the W. Ford Schumann ’50 Program in Democratic Studies as part of a three-year series on Race and Democracy.

Open to the public. All are welcome. No registration required. Please click the link below to join the webinar:
Passcode: 222146
Or iPhone one-tap :
US: +13126266799,,93468756014# or +16465588656,,93468756014#
Or Telephone:
Dial(for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):
US: +1 312 626 6799 or +1 646 558 8656 or +1 301 715 8592 or +1 346 248 7799 or +1 669 900 9128 or +1 253 215 8782
Webinar ID: 934 6875 6014
International numbers available: https://williams.zoom.us/u/aegHmmZqWF
Photo credit: Joe Henson.
Represent Williams as an Admissions Counselor!
Are you graduating this spring? Do you find yourself talking about Williams to any high school student you know? Are you interested in learning more about the secondary school landscape in the U.S. and abroad? Are you passionate about removing barriers to college access for high-achieving low-income students? Would you like to play a role in shaping future Williams classes? If you answered yes to any of the above, consider applying for the admission counselor position!

We are a diverse, dynamic and hard-working team of admission professionals who are passionate about recruiting and enrolling intellectually vibrant students from a wide range of backgrounds, and have a lot of fun together.
For optimal consideration, we encourage candidates to apply no later than March 22 by submitting a resume and cover letter. Application review will begin on March 23 and continue until the position is filled. Inquiries welcomed by Sulgi Lim, director of admission, at SL3@Williams.edu. Salary info included in posting.
See job posting and apply at https://tinyurl.com/21WilliamsAdmissionCounselor
Last of
the Mohicans
March 25 @ 5 p.m. EST:

BNRC is thrilled to have Heather Bruegl, Director of Cultural Affairs for the Stockbridge-Munsee Community, as a speaker.
Heather will share the important history of the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohicans.

All of the present-day Berkshires are the homelands of the Mohican people before they were forcefully displaced to Wisconsin. Heather will discuss the tribe’s history here and the traditional ways Native Americans take care of the land, stewarding it for the next seven generations.

Heather Bruegl is a member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin. She is a graduate of Madonna University in Michigan and holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in U.S. History. A curiosity of her own heritage led her to Wisconsin, where she has researched the history of the Native American tribes in the area. While Heather calls Michigan home, she has recently moved to Wisconsin and is now the Director of Cultural Affairs for the Stockbridge Munsee Community. In addition to that she also currently travels and speaks on Native American history, including policy and activism.
WAM Theatre Fresh Takes Play Reading

Streaming online
March 14-21, 2021 
Letters to Kamala
by Rachel Lynett
Directed by Nicole Brewer

In the tense lead up to the 2020 presidential election, playwright Rachel Lynett conjures three female American political leaders of the past to share their wisdom, perspective, and wry humor with VP candidate Kamala Harris.
Missing from our history books, meet three powerful women on whose shoulders Kamala now stands: Charlotta Bass, the first Black woman candidate for vice president, Charlene Mitchell, the first Black woman to run for president, and Patsy Matsu Takemoto Mink, the first woman of color to be elected to the House of Representatives, first Asian-American woman to run in Congress and the first Asian-American to run for president.

Available for streaming until 11:59 pm EDT on Sunday, March 21, 2021.

Run time: 75 minutes
This is a reading. Actors will have scripts in hand.
Join Jacob's Pillow:
Virtual Dance for Social Justice™ Community Residency
Move towards social justice with us! All community members are welcome. Movement experience not required.

Join artist Mar Parrilla and community leaders in a 4-part workshop series exploring social justice themes and histories present in our Berkshire communities. This will be an interactive process of learning, facilitated community conversations, and co-created responses to social justice concerns in our community. Share your voice, movement, and skills in this community co-creative process. This 4-part workshop series will culminate in a work-in-process virtual informal sharing and Q&A session. 

This series is in collaboration with Berkshire-region community partners, artists, and organizations. Collaborators will present social justice themes they encounter in their life experience, and their missions will offer inspiration and inform the conversation and creative process. Dance for Social Justice™ workshop operates within an antipatriarchal, antiracist, decolonial, and feminist framework.

Commit to this 4-part workshop series and co-create a work in response to social justice themes emerging in our Berkshire-region communities. Participants will be compensated for their time, active participation, and creative contributions. We ask that participants are present in all 4 workshops to be eligible for an honorarium. $15/hour per workshop hour, for up to 12 hours. Additional compensation may be provided for planning meetings and reflection sessions. 

All community members are welcome! We also welcome artists from all mediums (dancers, visual artists, musicians, poets, etc). Ages 12+; movement experience not required. All workshops will be hosted virtually for the safety and accessibility of participants during the ongoing pandemic.

Encouraged/required for participation in this four-part series:
  • Berkshires-region community member and/or invested in social justice themes concerning the Berkshires region
  • Interest, enthusiasm and commitment to embodied practice, collaboration, and social justice conversations
  • A reliable internet connection is required, as is a device with a camera and speakers such as a phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer with a webcam
  • For transparency purposes, trust building, and confidentiality, we ask that we keep our cameras on throughout our experience. We’re thinking gallery view, breakout rooms, and at times- mics on! 
  • Please find an open, safe space to move. We understand that everyone’s Zoom experience is different, including our home environments. Families, pets, plants, etc. in the background are welcome! 
  • To complete after submitting the Participation Form above: Confirmation of participation in the 4 workshops through a completed Letter of Agreement and confirmation of honorarium process with Jacob’s Pillow staff
All movers and levels are welcome to participate in this experience. English to Spanish translation will be provided through the Zoom chat function. Live Captioning will be provided through REV, displaying captions in real-time with limited lag. Transcriptions available. If you have any questions or access needs, please include in the Participation Form and we will do our best to welcome you.
Data4Justice Conference Announced
QSIDE is pleased to announce our inaugural Data4Justice Conference, a virtual, all-day event for scholars, activists, policymakers, and allies to explore the ways we can power social justice together. The conference has broadly accessible talks and is designed for a general audience. Want to learn more about how data, research, and activism come together to create change? Register today!

Students' registration fee is $50.00, and students can apply for Career Access Fund (CAF) funding to attend.
MassMoca & MCLA present:
CARE SYLLABUS, a justice-oriented public education and community resource featuring original text, visual media, recordings, and virtual live events by activists, artists, and academics.
online resources
The COVID-19 Health Advocacy Training
DC online workshop now available

This series of six short videos addresses COVID-19 and safer practices, as well as caring for oneself and for each other during this pandemic. The training examines racialized interpretations and impacts of COVID-19, and why social identities matter in dealing with the virus and with each other, as we engage in sometimes challenging discussions.

Created by Davis Center Community Engagement Fellows, this training is a peer to peer education and advocacy initiative, that others may find informative and helpful. The videos are available on-line, and follow-up discussion opportunities are available.
CISA Curated Guide to Organizations Dedicated to Helping Immigrant Families Separated at the Border

The Coalition for Immigrant Student Advancement (CISA) has recently created a resource guide dedicated to organizations helping immigrant families being separated at the border. These organizations have all been fact-checked and have a history of providing financial assistance to immigrants for legal aid, housing, bail relief, etc. The goal in creating and sharing this research guide is to give individuals simple and organized information on how they can direct their funds to help individuals in need. For more information about this initiative, email MIR2@williams.edu.
TalkSpace -
Free Online Therapy for Students

TalkSpace is an innovative online therapy service that is now available, at no cost and effective immediately, to all enrolled students, twelve months a year and even while traveling abroad. 

TalkSpace connects users to a dedicated, licensed therapist from a secure, HIPAA-compliant mobile app and web platform. Their roster comprises more than 5,000 licensed clinicians from across the country, who collectively speak over forty languages. You can send your therapist a text, voice or video message anytime, from anywhere, throughout your time at Williams.

Williams College and the IWS is providing this service to students in addition to all of our existing on-campus offerings in psychotherapy, psychiatry and on-call crisis services, as well as the wellbeing promotion events, workshops and groups we organize throughout the year.

To register, visit www.talkspace.com/williamscollege, enter your Williams email address and follow the prompts.
Crisis Interventions

Trevor Lifeline — The only national 24/7 crisis intervention and suicide prevention lifeline for LGBTQ young people under 25, available at 1-866-488-7386.
TrevorChat — A free, confidential, secure instant messaging service for LGBTQ youth that provides live help from trained volunteer counselors, open daily.
TrevorText — A free, confidential, secure service in which LGBTQ young people can text a trained Trevor counselor for support and crisis intervention, available daily by texting START to 678-678.

Suicide Prevention Trainings and Resources

LGBTQ on Campus — These online, interactive training simulations for students and faculty in higher education are AFSP/SPRC Best Practices for Suicide Prevention and were created in partnership with Kognito Interactive and Campus Pride.
Step-In, Speak-Up — These online, interactive training simulations for faculty and staff working with youth in Grades 6–12 are AFSP/SPRC Best Practices for Suicide Prevention and were created in partnership with Kognito Interactive.

If you are thinking about suicide, you deserve immediate support. Please call The Trevor Lifeline at 1-866-488-7386.