Diversity Lunch Talks

Upcoming Diversity Lunch Talks in Spring 2018

The Diversity Lunch Talk series is part of TEFD’s Teaching & Diversity Professional Development Series. The lunch talks provide opportunities for participants to engage in an informal, collegial setting with a wide range of topics related to diversity and inclusive and equitable teaching, with Dr. Kirsten Helmer facilitating. Lunch talks are offered monthly throughout the semester. Lunch is provided by TEFD.

Some Diversity Lunch Talks have a highly interactive, workshop format that allow participants to explore topics such as:

  • Facilitating inclusive discussions
  • Creating an inclusive syllabus
  • Facilitating difficult dialogues and managing hot moments.

Other Diversity Lunch Talks bring participants together with discussant panels around some of the pressing issues related to teaching inclusively in the current Higher Education context.

  • In spring 2016, the panel discussion "Triggers and Trigger Warnings: Ethical Responsibility, Threat to Academic Freedom, Opportunity for Dialogue?" focused on preparing students to engage with challenging topics in the classroom. This discussion was moderated by Ximena Zúñiga (Student Development) and Kirsten Helmer (TEFD), and featured Leda Cooks and Demetria Shabazz (Communication), Jim Helling (UMass Athletic Counseling Office), and Oscar Collins (Center for Multicultural Advancement and Student Success).
  • In fall 2016, a panel discussion on “Diversity and Teaching Inclusively in STEM Fields” featured Director of Student Success & Diversity Charlana Simmons (College of Natural Sciences), David McLaughlin (Electrical & Computer Engineering), graduate student Christina Chisholm (Molecular & Cell Biology), and undergraduate student Kay T. Bros (Astrophysics/Professional Physics).
  • In the spring 2017 panel, Megan Lewis (Theater), Sut Jhally (Communication), and graduate student Kyla Walters (Sociology) delved into what it means to “Teach Controversial Topics Now.”

Difficult Conversations Panel Discussion Spring 2017

Teaching Controversial Topics Now discussion with Kirsten Helmer, Kyla Walters, Sut Jhally, and Megan Lewis 

Overview of Previous Diversity Lunch Talks

During past semesters, TEFD held a series of three lunch talks:

Fall 2017

  •  Cheating Lessons—Learning from Academic Dishonesty, with Guest Presenter Dr. James M. Lang 
  •  Facilitating Discussions About Diversity and Social Justice Issues: The Straight A's Model, with Guest Presenter Dr. Diane J. Goodman 
  •  Creating Inclusive Learning Experiences, with Presenter Dr. Kirsten Helmer (TEFD) 

Spring 2017

  • Teaching Controversial Topics Now—Panel discussion with Professor Megan Lewis, Professor Sut Jhally, Doctoral Candidate Kyla Walters
  • Facilitating Difficult Dialogues and Managing Hot Moments in College Classes
  • Better Science, Better Learning through Inclusive Teaching with Guest Speaker Dr. Patricia Marten DiBartolo (Smith College)

Fall 2016

  • Leading Inclusive Discussions
  • Diversity and Teaching Inclusively in STEM Fields
  • The Inclusive Syllabus

Spring 2016

  • How Do You Manage Triggers, Trigger Warnings and Microaggressions in Your Classroom? 
  • Meeting the Needs of Minority Students
  • Reflective Practices: How Can They Support Us in Being Socially Just and Culturally Responsive Educators?

Fall 2015

  • Challenges and Rewards of Teaching Inclusively, Part 1
  • Challenges and Rewards of Teaching Inclusively, Part 2
  • How Does the Recent Student Activism Affect Us As Instructors?

For more information, contact Kirsten Helmer