Volume 3, Issue 8: February 25, 2021
R.I.S.E.* Up Newsletter
*Reinforcing Inclusion through Skill-building and Education
Image of Sen. Revels with quote - I find that the prejudice in this country to color is very great and I sometimes fear that it is on the increase.
On this day in history in 1870, Hiram Rhodes Revels was sworn in as the first Black United States Senator, representing the State of Mississippi. During his tenure, he quickly became an outspoken opponent of racial segregation. And though Revels' term in the Senate lasted just a year, he broke new ground for African Americans in Congress. As one of many Black political officeholders who took office during the Reconstruction Era, Revels represented for many a sign of hope that racial equality might be on the near horizon. 

Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts said on the Senate floor that day, “All men are created equal, says the great Declaration, and now a great act attests this verity....The Declaration was only half established by Independence. The greatest duty remained behind. In assuring the equal rights of all we complete the work.” 

151 years later, unfortunately, our country still awaits the fulfillment of promises made during the Reconstruction era.  Systemic inequities and overwhelming social racism still persist. However, there is reason for hope. As long as systems are challenged, new ground continues to be broken (both within and outside of governmental offices), and leaders arise to advance social movements - hope has roots! 

This month, a group of faculty and staff are reading the book Vanguard: How Black Women Broke Barriers, Won the Vote, and Insisted on Equality for All. In this book, author Martha S. Jones describes the long history of Black women in the United States organizing and working to gain political power in order to build a more just and equitable society. This book highlights many powerful and inspiring stories of Black women who broke new ground, spoke up and out, assumed leadership positions, and worked tirelessly against injustices from periods well before the reconstructionist era. 

It is encouraging to revisit forgotten narratives, and explore both our history and our present with new questions, new insights, and newly open minds. What is most encouraging in the face of a “lack of promises attained” is seeing how many people have been dedicated to the hard work that it takes to seek justice and equality, respect and humanity, for all -- regardless of their identity.  Because of their hard work, and that of so many others who continue to labor for justice, I have hope. Because I work in an environment where I can freely engage in dialogue with colleagues that are also open to doing better, learning new things, and challenging assumptions, I have hope. 

One of the most valuable lessons for me about months dedicated to exploring underestimated and neglected histories, such as Black History Month (and our upcoming Women’s History month in March), is the power in appreciating what has not been discussed or showcased enough. There is power in learning about forgotten and neglected histories. It helps us to change our current perspective, encourages us all to see what was possible in the past, and reach for what might seem impossible in our present. So I have hope, both in Senators Sumner and Revels' belief in a truly fair and prosperous United States and in our community, and in the ability each of us has to help make these justice goals a reality. 

As we close out our Black History Month celebrations, please join me in offering a prayer of thanksgiving for all those who have gone before us and left a legacy of tireless work and dedication, examples of inspirational vision both espoused and acted upon, and, ultimately, hope for us to follow. 
Headshot of Tiffany Galvin Green

Tiffany Galvin Green, Ph.D.,
Vice President for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Division Announcements
Happy Purim!
image of hamantaschen cookies with the words Happy Purim
Tonight the Jewish members of our community begin the celebration of Purim, the Jewish holiday commemorating Queen Esther, whose bravery saved the Jews from persecution in the Persian Empire, as told in the biblical Book of Esther. The holiday is observed with costumes, special foods, pageantry and merriment.

We wish all who are celebrating a Chag Purim Sameach! 
Only a few days remain for the Campus Climate survey!
Promo image about the Campus Climate survey
Current JCU Students and Employees: if you have not yet completed the Campus Climate Survey on sex and gender-based discrimination, harassment, and violence, please do so now before the survey closes on Sunday! The survey should take less than 20 minutes to complete.

Your responses help us to know where we need more planning, resources and programming around these issues to create a better culture of care here at JCU.

For every survey completed during the month of February, JCU will make a donation to the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center.

Once you complete your survey, please encourage others to do so by posting to social media using the hashtag #JCUCultureofCare!
Live (Virtual) Magic Show featuring Dan Chan, Master Magician
Monday, March 1, 12:30 pm
promo image for Dan Chan master magician
Take your lunch break with CSDI for a special magic and mind reading presentation with "The Millionaires' Mentalist" - Dan Chan: Master Magician. Buzzfeed did a full feature profile on Dan Chan and dubbed him “Silicon Valley’s Favorite Magician.” He’s been featured on The Hustle, Business Insider, Voyage LA and CNBC. This event is all-ages and free to the public.
Students: Please Complete Your Required
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Course
Over the years, students have often asked how they can support or be a part of the Center for Student Diversity and Inclusion’s mission and work. One concrete way to contribute is to complete both parts of our online course “Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for Students” designed by EverFi.

We want to remind students to complete this course and we also want to thank all the students who have completed both parts of the course. Part I takes 45 minutes to complete (due March 26th, 2021) and Part II requires only 5 minutes to complete.

As a community, we grow stronger as we learn more about how to best create inclusive spaces through opportunities like this training. In this course, students will:
  • Learn about key concepts related to identity, bias, power, privilege and oppression.
  • Understand the benefits of being part of a diverse community.
  • Develop classroom and workplace skills related to ally behavior, self-care, and creating inclusive spaces.
  • Earn an attractive diversity, equity, and inclusion certificate upon completion of the course which can be highlighted in a resume, CV, and LinkedIn account.

If you experience technical problems while completing the course, support is available 24/7 and can be accessed from the “Help” link within the course. For non-technical problems, please reach out to csdi@jcu.edu. Check your JCU email for your personalized EverFi course completion link.
Register now for the
21-Day Challenge for Racial Equity and Social Justice!
promo image for the YWCA Racial Equity Challenge
The DEI Division is encouraging ALL members of the JCU community to sign up for the 21-Day Racial Equity and Social Justice Challenge this March!

The Challenge is designed to create dedicated time and space to build more effective social justice habits, particularly those dealing with issues of race, power, privilege, and leadership. Each day of the challenge you will be presented with activities such as reading an article, listening to a podcast, reflecting on personal experience and more. Participation in an activity like this helps us to discover how racial injustice and social injustice impact our community, to connect with one another, and to identify ways to dismantle racism and other forms of discrimination. The Challenge starts on Monday, March 1st and continues (Monday –Friday) through March 29th. It is sponsored by the YWCA of Greater Cleveland.

R.I.S.E. Higher: Featured Article of the Week
For younger job seekers, diversity and inclusion in the workplace aren’t a preference. They’re a requirement.
Millennial and Gen Z professionals are avoiding companies without a diverse workforce, clear promotion traffic and a commitment to confronting systemic racism in their ranks.
Jennifer Miller, Washington Post, February 18, 2021
Last summer, Arionne Lloyd went job hunting with a fresh set of priorities. For three years, she had been one of the few Black people in the sales department at a national movie theater chain. It wasn’t always a good feeling. Movies headlined by Black actors or a Black director were often pigeonholed as “Black” entertainment, and Lloyd was frequently the sole voice advocating for a wider marketing campaign.

When she had applied to the job in her mid-20s, she hadn’t asked about diversity. “It was about getting the role and getting the paycheck,” said Lloyd.

But this summer changed everything. “I can’t really put into words how George Floyd and Black Lives Matter greatly, greatly affected me,” Lloyd said. “When it came to entering the workforce, I wanted to make my next move as meaningful as possible.”
Banner reads Watching Our Words
The "Watching our Words" feature discusses words or phrases in common use in American English with derogatory or offensive origins. Do you have a word or phrase you'd like us to feature in "Watching our Words"? Drop it into our Suggestion Box and we will explore it in a future newsletter!
Announcements from our network...
Human Trafficking in Higher Ed Series
Friday, February 26, 2021, 1:00 pm EST
Promotional image for Human Trafficking in Higher Ed series
The University of Rio Grande is partnering with Eyes Up Appalachia and Gallia CPR Human Trafficking Collaborative to bring awareness and education about human trafficking, through a three-part series of virtual educational sessions. The second in the series is entitled "Don't Fall for that Request to Be a Sugar Baby!"  It will be held on February 26th at 1:00pm.

The session will focus on social media, online grooming, and human trafficking in the digital age. It will feature Special Agent Alex Hunt, coordinator of the FBI’s Northwest Ohio Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force.
Cleveland Public Library Presents
"Understanding Policing in the 21st Century"
Saturday, February 27, 1:00 pm
writers and readers program promo image
Cleveland Public Library will host a free public event featuring Jelani Cobb and Heather McGhee in a frank conversation on the topic of "Policing in the 21st Century." This conversation is part of the Cleveland Public Library’s Writers & Readers series, which engages authors, academics, and public figures in discussions surrounding the books and stories that have shaped their lives.
DEI in the Headlines -- Quick Takes:
pride flags
According to Gallup's update on lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender identification released this week, 5.6% of U.S. adults now identify as LGBT. The current estimate is up from 4.5% in 2017. The report states that younger generations are far more likely than older Americans to consider themselves to be something other than heterosexual. This includes about one in six adult members of Generation Z.
photo of paper surgical mask
A recently released paper by two Auburn university faculty and a graduate student found that lower-ranked instructors, including a disproportionate number of non-white and female instructors, bear a disproportionate share of the risk of Covid-19 exposure while teaching at their university, where only about half of the classrooms have the capacity to achieve physical distancing in accordance with public-health guidelines. The paper, reported in this week's Chronicle of Higher Education, suggests that inequities in the academic labor force have been exacerbated by a hard push for in-person instruction that places contingent faculty members and graduate students in the riskiest teaching environments.

Students and alumni of Bluefield College in Virginia are rallying publicly around the college's men's basketball team after the entire team was issued a one-game suspension on Feb. 11 for kneeling during the national anthem in violation of a directive from the college's president, David Olive. The controversy has expanded into a broader discussion about systemic racism, freedom of speech for college athletes, and the experience of Black students at the college.