TIDE Ambassadors Fellowship (Teaching for Inclusiveness, Diversity, & Equity)

The Center for Teaching and Learning is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2021-2022 TIDE Ambassadors fellowship award. The ten 2021-2022 faculty fellows represent a wide range of disciplines and teaching interests:

  1. Jessica Boakye, Lecturer, Civil and Environmental Engineering, College of Engineering
  2. Sarah Goff, Associate Professor, Health Promotion and Policy, School of Public Health & Health Sciences
  3. Elisa Gonzales, Assistant Professor, Theater, College of Humanities and Fine Arts
  4. Beth Jakob, Professor of Biology, College of Natural Sciences and Associate Dean, Graduate School.
  5. Meghan MacLean, Lecturer, Environmental Conservation, College of Natural Sciences
  6. Paul Wolff, Lecturer, Environmental Conservation, College of Natural Sciences (Mount Ida)
  7. Shakuntala Ray, Lecturer, Writing Program, College of Humanities and Fine Arts
  8. Lindiwe Sibeko, Associate Professor of Extension, Nutrition, School of Public Health & Health Sciences
  9. Fumi Tomita, Assistant Professor, Music & Dance, College of Humanities and Fine Arts
  10. Yanfei Xu, Assistant Professor, Mechanical & Industrial Engineering, College of Engineering

In 2016–2017, the Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL) inaugurated a new year-long faculty fellowship, the TIDE Ambassadors Program (Teaching for Inclusiveness, Diversity, and Equity). This program supports the UMass Diversity Strategic plan and recognizes the vital role that faculty fulfill in creating an inclusive and equitable college experience for students. 

TIDE Ambassadors explore how they can enhance students’ learning and academic success across cultural, social, and learning differences by adopting a strength-based, inclusive, and equitable approach to teaching and learning grounded in the value of diversity. The program acknowledges the potential of faculty functioning as catalysts for change through intensive professional development of faculty across disciplines and career stages.

TIDE Ambassadors take what they learn from their experiences with the fellowship program and develop a project through which they share their growing expertise and contribute to the dialogue about and practice of teaching for inclusiveness, diversity, and equity at the departmental, school/college, or campus-wide levels. 

TIDE Ambassadors continue to support the University’s diversity, equity and inclusion efforts beyond the fellowship year through the work they do in their programs, departments, or colleges and by supporting CTL diversity, equity and inclusion programming.

Paige Warren, Raeann Leblanc, David McLaughlin, and Anne Ciecko engaged in a small group discussion.

TIDE Ambassadors 2016-17: Anne Ciecko, Paige Warren, Raeann Leblanc, and David McLaughlin engaged in a small group discussion

Program Goals

The overarching purpose of the program is to establish a learning community that offers participating faculty fellows sustained opportunities to engage with and support each other, as well as, to learn together so that they are able to develop the knowledge and skills to share this learning with the UMass community. Experiential, collaborative, and reflective learning are integral elements of the TIDE Ambassadors Program. 

Throughout the fellowship year, participants:

  • Engage in reflective practices, developing self-awareness and sharing their own experiences, successes, failures, and concerns with inclusive teaching and engaging students with diversity-related topics.
  • Engage in experiential learning activities to gain experience with inclusive and equitable teaching practices.
  • Explore scholarship, theoretical frameworks, and various perspectives to build and enhance their capacity to teach diverse students inclusively and equitably.
  • Participate in discussions, considering insights from relevant literature and exchanging ideas on how one can use inclusion and equity models to support deeper and more respectful learning.
  • Develop a library of resources.
  • Put into practice what they learn to their own course design and pedagogical practices, reflect on this, and gain feedback from peers and facilitator.
  • Set goals for continued improvement.
  • Identify and carry out a TIDE Ambassadors project through which they will share their experiences and knowledge.

What Previous Faculty Fellows Say About the TIDE Ambassadors Fellowship

 “I now feel part of a very strong and engaged community across the university and have many colleagues to turn to for advice on different topics.”

“I found a place to discuss my hopes and concerns, to give and get support, and where my desire to develop my ability to respond to my students' needs in my teaching in increasingly meaningful ways was normalized and validated. TIDE offers an environment that is very unique and it is invaluable in this regard.”

“The experiences during TIDE were incredibly powerful and formative for me.”

“TIDE has impacted every aspect of my teaching. It has impacted the things I create (syllabi, documents, etc.), how I present material, and who I am as a person.”

“TIDE has given me so many new tools to use in my teaching. I have redesigned many facets of my courses, everything from the syllabus, to assignments, to how I relate to students, based on what I have learned in TIDE. These changes have been very positive, and students have specifically commented on how much they felt included and valued in my class.”

TIDE Ambassadors Working Session Spring 2017

TIDE Ambassadors 2017–2018 cohort during the 3-Day Intensive May Retreat.

Eligibility and Selection Criteria

Faculty at all stages of experience in teaching for inclusiveness, diversity, and equity are encouraged to apply. We strongly encourage faculty from historically underrepresented groups to apply.

Faculty Fellows are required to meet the following criteria:

  • Full-time position. The fellowship is open to non-tenure track (with the exception of short-term hires) and tenured/tenure-track and faculty.  
  • Demonstrates high interest in developing capacity for teaching diverse students in inclusive and equitable ways
  • Potential for making a positive impact on the teaching culture in the home department, school/college, and/or broader campus community

Application Process & Deadline

Eligible faculty members can apply directly by submitting an application form via email to khelmer@umass.edu.   (Deadline for 2021-2022 applications has passed - Thank you.)  

The application includes responses to the following (not to exceed three pages):

  • Information about teaching responsibilities, prior trainings/participation in professional development programs and any other activities/work related to issues of diversity and inclusive teaching.
  • Reflection about how issues of diversity, inclusion and equity have emerged in the applicant’s discipline or courses taught and what challenges and questions the applicant wants to explore as part of the fellowship. 
  • Envisioning how the applicant will contribute to the dialogue about and practice of teaching for inclusiveness, diversity and equity in their department, college and/or the wider UMass community after the fellowship year ends.

CTL staff will review the applications and select 10 TIDE Ambassadors in March 2021. Pending the volume of nominations, the selection committee may request in-person interviews with semi-finalists only. Fellows will reflect a wide range of experiences and interests in teaching for diversity, inclusion and equity as well as a range of departments and disciplines.


Fellowship Components

During the 2021-2022 academic year, TIDE Ambassadors will:

  • Attend an intensive introductory institute in May 2021.  Depending on the pandemic situation, the institute will either be offered in person from May 19 – May 21, 2021 (WE-FR, 9AM-4PM each day) OR virtually to be split up into shorter sessions offered throughout the weeks of May 12 – May 21, 2021. 
  • Attend eight monthly 2-hour cohort meetings throughout the academic year: August – December, February - April, with readings and assignments in between (approximately 2 hours of work between meetings). The proposed days/times for the semester meetings are: every first Friday of the month from 12:30PM – 2:30PM.
  • Attend at least one event offered as part of the CTL Teaching & Diversity Professional Development Series per semester.
  • Attend a half-day intensive institute (9AM-2PM) in January 2022. Date to be determined by the group.
  • Attend a day-long final retreat (9AM-4PM) in May 2022.
  • Provide feedback on their program experience before the January session and after the final May session.

Throughout the program year, they will:

  • Take what they learn from the experience into their classrooms, field-testing some of the new teaching practices and strategies, and reporting back to the group.
  • Develop a project through which the fellow will share aspects of their learnings at the departmental, school/college, or campus-wide level.


Fellowship Compensation

Participating in the TIDE Ambassadors Fellowship is a rewarding and rigorous experience. In recognition of the commitment necessary to participate in the TIDE Ambassadors program, the Center for Teaching & Learning will provide $1,500 of GOF funds that faculty fellows can use for their further professional development. These funds will be transferred to the Ambassador's department GOF fund in two installments. The first transfer will be made in September of the fellowship year after successful completion of the intensive introductory institute in May 2021 and the August 2021 session. 

For more information, contact Kirsten Helmer.


Current and Past TIDE Ambassadors

Current 2021-2022 Cohorts of TIDE Ambassadors

Previous Cohorts of TIDE Ambassadors: