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Spelman Hosts Inclusion Summit

ATLANTA - Nine historically black colleges and universities will gather at Spelman College for the historic summit, “Facilitating Campus Climates of Pluralism, Inclusivity, and Progressive Change at HBCUs,” to examine institutional climate issues around diversity, inclusion, gender and sexuality at HBCUs. Launched by the Spelman College Women’s Research and Resource Center from a grant received from the Arcus Foundation three years ago, the advocacy project is the first time a range of HBCUs will convene to engage in dialogue and present research findings about lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender issues on Black college campuses.

HBCUs participating in the one-day summit include Bennett College for Women, Howard University, Clark Atlanta University, Southern University, North Carolina Central University, Philander Smith College, Morehouse College, Southern University and Morgan State University.

The summit will be presented by the Spelman College Women’s Research and Resource Center on Friday, April 29, 2011, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., in Spelman's Camille Olivia Hanks Cosby Academic Center.

The summit comes at a critical time as many colleges and universities around the nation grapple with LGBT issues in the wake of the highly public suicide of a gay male student at Rutgers University.

The overall goal of the advocacy project is to increase public awareness and understanding about African-American gay and lesbian experiences, as well as sexuality issues in the African Diaspora.

 

 

Program Highlights
9:00 a.m.
Welcome
Beverly Daniel Tatum, President, Spelman College
Johnnella Butler, Provost, Spelman College

Premiere Screening, "Bursting With Light" (a 2011 film by Taryn Lee Crenshaw, Spelman, C'2008)

9:15 a.m.
OVERVIEW: Facilitating Campus Climates of Pluralism, Inclusivity, and Progressive Change at HBCUs

Beverly Guy Sheftall, Anna Julia Cooper Professor, Director, Women’s Research and Resource Center, Spelman College

9:30 a.m.
PANEL ONE
Setting the Context: LGBT Communities in/and HBCUs

Moderator, M. Jacqui Alexander, research professor, Spelman College

Ruby Nell Sales, Founder, The SpiritHouse Project. "Their Goodness Followed Their Horizon’s Rim: Lesbians in HBCUs"

Anthony L. Pinder, director of internationalization, Georgia Gwinnett College. "Lost in Reverie: Gay HBCU Alumni Look Back"

Gary L. Lemons, associate professor, African-American Literature, University of Southern Florida.
"Like a Voice Crying in the Wilderness:
Preaching and Professing ‘A Sexual Discourse of Resistance’ From the Outside In the Black Church"

Roderick A. Ferguson, associate professor and chair, department of American Studies, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.
"The Past and Future Diversities of HBCUs: Queerness and the Institutional Fulfillment of Black Studies"

11:15 a.m.
Panel Two: HBCU Administrators: LGBT Climate and Strategies for Change

Moderator, Johnnella Butler, provost, Spelman College

Beverly Daniel Tatum, president, Spelman College

Yvonne Ortiz-Prince, dean, Student Affairs, Huston-Tillotson University

Bettye Parker Smith, professor of English, former provost, Dillard University

Clarissa Myrick-Harris, interim executive director, United Negro College Fund, Institute for Capacity Building; director UNCF Curriculum & Faculty
Enhancement Program

12:30 p.m.
LUNCH & Screening:
"No Hetero: Disrupting the Hegemony (2005).
Filmed, edited, and produced by Taryn Lee Crenshaw, Leana Cabral and Dianna Houghton

2:00 p.m.
Panel Three: HBCU Climate Issues: Student/Alumnae Perspectives

Moderator: Donna Hope, Spelman College, C'2000; program manager, City University of New York Building Performance Lab's Benchmarking Service Bureau; Independent Contractor,Vokashi Kitchen Waste Solutions

Victoria Kirby, graduate assistant, Office of the President, Howard University

Daniel Edwards, co-chair, SafeSpace, Morehouse College

JeShawna Wholley, C'2011, past president, Afrekete, Spelman College

Moya Bailey, Spelman College, C'2005, Ph.D candidate (Women's Studies), Emory University

3:30 p.m.
PANEL FOUR:
Best LGBT Practices from the Field: Social Justice Organizations and University Collaborations

Moderator, Cynthia Neal Spence, associate professor, sociology; director UNCF/Mellon Programs, Spelman College

Amit Taneja, associate director, LGBT Resource Center, Syracuse University

Donna Payne, associate director of diversity, Human Rights Campaign

Sharon J. Lettman-Hicks, executive director and CEO, National Black Justice Coalition

Matt Richardson, assistant professor, department of English/department of African and African Diaspora Studies/Center for Gender and Women’s Studies, University of Texas, Austin

5:00 p.m.
BREAK

5:15 p.m.
Project Summary and
Recommendations/Closing Remarks

Beverly Guy-Sheftall, Spelman College

6:00 p.m.
Reception: Joe Jennings & the Spelman College Jazz Ensemble

6:30 p.m.
Spelman College Museum of Fine Arts Tour, Anne Collins Smith, curator

7:00 p.m.
Brief guided walking tour of Spelman's campus  


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