Lecia Brooks, outreach director at the Southern Poverty Law Center, speaks at “Understanding the Forces that Drive Us Apart: A Symposium on Polarization.”

Strong Campus Turnout at Symposium to Address Polarization

The Campus Center auditorium was abuzz Feb. 5 with an all-day community event, “Understanding the Forces that Drive Us Apart: A Symposium on Polarization.” The symposium was well-attended, with hundreds of students, faculty and staff stopping by throughout the day to participate in debate and meaningful discussion. 

For Twitter highlights of the day, see this Twitter Moments story. Video highlights of the day will be made...

Book Discussion Groups to Consider ‘25 Habits for Culturally Effective People’

The Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI) is continuing the Learning Communities initiative, which encourages the campus community to participate in small informal discussion groups based on the book, “What if I Say the Wrong Thing?: 25 Habits for Culturally Effective People” by Vernā Myers.

The initiative was piloted last semester with students, staff and faculty across campus.

Fourteen book discussion groups will begin across campus this spring, with most holding their initial...

James Young

UMass Amherst Institute for Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies to Host Symposium Honoring James Young

The Institute for Holocaust, Genocide, and Memory Studies will host a daylong symposium honoring the work of James Young, Distinguished Professor emeritus of English and Judaic and Near Eastern studies and founding director of the institute, on Tuesday, Feb. 5 from 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m., at the institute, 758 North Pleasant St.

The symposium, “Edges, Textures, Stages: James Young and the Field of Memory Studies,” will be followed by a reception until 6:30 p.m. The symposium and reception...

Lecia Brooks

Campus Community Invited to Participate in Special Symposium on Polarization: ‘Understanding the Forces that Drive Us Apart’

All members of the community are invited to participate in a special event on Tuesday, Feb. 5: “Understanding the Forces that Drive Us Apart: A Symposium on Polarization.” Sessions are scheduled throughout the day, making it convenient for people to engage in a variety of opportunities to better understand the national rise in hateful acts and to build skills to overcome division.

The symposium will bring prominent figures and academics to campus, including:

  • Lecia
  • ...
The Graduate Engineering Hub in Marcus Hall

College of Engineering Sets Ribbon Cutting for Hub Space

A ribbon cutting on Thursday, Jan. 31 from 1-2:30 p.m. will mark the formal opening of a new engineering hub space in Marcus Hall that includes the Graduate Engineering Hub in Room 120 and the Community, Equity and Inclusion (CEI) Hub in Room 128.

The ceremony will be followed by refreshments in the CEI Hub and walk-throughs of the spaces.

The CEI Hub incorporates the offices of Paula Rees,assistant dean for diversity, and the assistant director of diversity programs, a...

Campus Community Invited to Participate in Workshops to Build Skills to Challenge Hate, Overcome Division

Beginning Feb. 12, all members of the campus community are invited to participate in Dignity and Respect in Action: Community Conversations, a series of workshops for students, faculty and staff to build skills to challenge hate and overcome division.

The schedule of workshops, which include a complimentary lunch or dinner, is as follows:

Willie Hill Jr.

Willie Hill Jr. to Retire as Director of Fine Arts Center

Willie Hill Jr. came to the Fine Arts Center in 1999, and his retirement on Feb. 8 closes out a half-century career in arts education that launched just after he led the first Super Bowl Halftime Show in 1967. For an organization that’s 43 years old, Hill’s nearly 20 years at the university is undeniably impactful.

“Dr. Hill’s leadership of the Fine Arts Center over the past 20 years has been exemplary,” said provost John McCarthy. “What an extraordinary resource for our campus and...

Rebecca Lorimer Leonard

Lorimer Leonard Honored for Book on Migrant Women and Literacy

Rebecca Lorimer Leonard, associate professor of English, has received a 2019 Outstanding Book Award from the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC) for her book, “Writing on the Move: Migrant Women and the Value of Literacy.

The award honors books within the field of composition and rhetoric. Authored books, as well as edited volumes are eligible. Nominees are evaluated for scholarship and research in the areas of pedagogy, practice, history and theory....

UMACC Passes $400,000; Campaign Closes Jan. 31

With two weeks left to donate to UMACC, the Umass Amherst Community Campaign, there is still time for university employees to donate the $40,000 needed to meet this year’s goal of $440,000. Thank you to those of you who have made your gift already. To those of you who have not, the campaign ends Jan. 31. Make your gift online at or download this paper...

“Our Immigrant Voices” Banner on Display in Whitmore

The campus community is invited to view the 20-foot mural “Our Immigrant Voices,” on display in Whitmore Administration Building, third floor, until March 1.

The installation is a product of the first Our Immigrant Voices course, an 11-week class designed to bring together immigrant campus employees to get to know each other and to discuss ways they would like to amplify their voices.

The mural, on the corridor wall leading to the office of Student Activities and Campus Life,...