UNT Equity and Diversity Conference


The Equity and Diversity Conference is an annual event hosted by the Division of Institutional Equity and Diversity at the University of North Texas. The conference brings together hundreds of students, educators and professionals who are committed to equity, access, and inclusion in higher education, but is also open to any community members interested in diversity and inclusion topics.

Each year the conference is keynoted by a speaker with relevant knowledge, skills, and experience related to diversity, equity, inclusion, and/or social justice. Past speakers have included Dr. Melissa Harris-Perry, Dr. Derald Wing Sue, Hill Harper, and Soledad O’Brien. See below for a list of past conference speakers.

Registration for the 2018 Equity & Diversity Conference is now closed. Registrants will receive a confirmation email by Monday, February 19. Please check your spam folder if you do not receive the email in your inbox. We look forward to seeing you on February 22!

Download the program!

2018 Keynote Speaker: Rosa Clemente

Rosa ClementeOur 2018 keynote speaker is Rosa Clemente, 2008 Green Party Vice Presidential candidate, community organizer, and journalist. From Harvard to prisons, Rosa has spent her life dedicated to scholar activism.

She is the president and founder of Know Thy Self Productions, which has produced four major community activism tours and consults on issues such as Hip-Hope activism, media justice, voter engagement among youth of color, third party politics, intercultural relations between Black and Latinx, immigrants’ rights as an extension of human rights, and universal healthcare.

She is a frequent guest on television, radio, and online media.

 

2018 Social Justice Speaker: Dr. Dafina-Lazarus (DL) Stewart

DL StewartDr. Stewart (pronouns: ze, zim, zir) is a professor in the School of Education and Tri-Director of the Student Affairs in Higher Education Program at Colorado State University. Ze is a scholar, educator, and activist focused on empowering and imagining futures that sustain and cultivate the learning, growth, and success of marginalized groups in U.S. higher education institutions.

Dr. Stewart’s work is motivated by an ethic of love grounded in justice and informed by an intersectional framework that recognizes both the lived experiences of individuals with multiple marginalities, as well as the material effects of interlocking systems of oppression.

Over the course of zir 17-year faculty career, ze has focused most intently on issues of race and ethnicity, sexuality, and gender, as well as religion, faith, and spirituality in zir research, teaching, and service to professional organizations and institutions across the nation.

Dr. Stewart is the author of over four dozen journal articles and book chapters, as well as either editor, coeditor, or author for three books covering multicultural student services, gender and sexual diversity of U.S. college students, and historical experiences of Black collegians in northern liberal arts colleges.

Dr. Stewart has also provided professional service and leadership to a number of scholarly and professional associations, most substantively through a variety of roles in ACPA—College Student Educators International, as well as for the Association for the Study of Higher Education, in which ze led the Council on Ethnic Participation for three years. Dr. Stewart was named an ACPA Senior Scholar in March 2017.

Conference Workshops

Inclusive Excellence AwardThe conference serves as an effective personal and professional development resource for faculty, staff, students, and professionals seeking to broaden and deepen their perspectives around topics such as bias awareness, discrimination policies and practices, identity development, social justice education, and identity-based topics such as race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender and gender identity. Workshop presenters include both UNT and external community members from around the country. For a list of last year’s workshops, click here.

2018 Schedule and Workshops

Click each title below to view the associated workshops and their descriptions.

Continental Breakfast
Union Room 314 (Large Ballroom)

Union Room 314

I Can't Speak for Us All
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Race and Ethnicity, Self-Care
Nieesha Earls; Latrice Moore
Union Room 382 A
As an African-American/Black woman, it can be difficult to navigate the office politics in a predominantly White office. Are you constantly feeling singled out, asked to explain your culture, or questioned about certain slang? Join us for an open discussion about the role of being the token person of color, particularly the token African-American/Black woman.

Supporting Undocumented Students: Sharing Best Practices and Building Networks
Level: Advanced | Keywords: Citizenship and Immigration and Coalition Building
Dr. Mariela Nuñez-Janes; Dr. Mayra Olivares-Urueta
Union Room 333 A
This session focuses on coalition building across institutions of higher education in order to support undocumented students in times of uncertainty. Presenters will share best practices, identify areas of need, and begin building a network. The network established in this session intends to create a working group that will allow participants and presenters to exchange information and ideas to support undocumented students in our college campuses. Participants will be ready to commit to building a movement beyond the moment provided by this conference!

Leading the Pack: Mentoring while Navigating Through Self-Actualization
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Cultural Humility, Mentoring and Race and Ethnicity
Michael Gonzalez
Union Room 382 B
This roundtable discussion will highlight how individuals working toward self-actualization can still mentor students. Specifically, mentoring students of color who have already moved through or are "further along" in racial/ethnic self-actualization than you, the mentor. We will discuss self-actualization alongside racial/ethnic identity development theories and share practices on how you, in any stage, can still provide impactful mentorship.

Navigating Privilege and Marginalization in Building Social Justice Competence
Level: Advanced | Keywords: Coalition Building and Organizational Change
Dr. D-L Stewart
Union Room 333 B
All people are members of multiple social groups and likely claim several social identities. Recognizing that some of those identities are privileged while others are marginalized is important. It can be easier to ignore our privileged identities, but doing so risks breaking bridges instead of building them. This session will engage participants in considering how their privileged and marginalized identities interact to enable or hinder the development of social justice competence.

A Conversation With Rosa Clemente
Invitation Only Discussion with Rosa Clemente
Union Senate Room 332

Know Thy Self: Building Momentum Through Student Advocacy
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Cultural Humility, Leadership and Self-Care
Kim Jackson
Union Room 333 A
This program is designed for students who wish to be change agents and game-changers regarding social justice and diversity and inclusion efforts in the classroom. Students will learn ways to leverage their sphere of influence to cultivate more diverse and inclusive learning environments and hold their peers, faculty, staff, and administrators accountable for providing a space conducive to paving the way for positive and sustainable change.

Building Bridges to Inclusion Through Universal Design
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Academic Affairs Coalition Building, and Leadership
Devin Axtman
Union Room 382 B
People with disabilities are a part of our community and have trouble with access. Planning considerations may be necessary for people with disabilities to have a bridge to inclusion. This interactive program will discuss strategies for inclusion by introducing the principles of Universal Design. Attendees will learn concrete methods of incorporating Universal Design into their daily work to foster inclusion.

The Hard Conversation: Preparing Students To Talk About Racism
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Coalition Building, Minority Serving Institution (MSI) and Race and Ethnicity
Chantel Hobbs
Union Room 333 B
This session serves as an opportunity for students and collegiate advocates to develop skills to have cross-racial dialogues about racism. With race based hate crimes on the rise across college campuses, it is essential that all individuals become aware of their own biases, and are equipped with the resources necessary to prevent manifestations of racism. Many student and collegiate advocates admit they do not know where to begin to address race-based violence. For students and collegiate advocates, developing the skills and confidence to have hard conversations about race is the first step to prevent racism on campus.

Work in Progress Screening: Rubí: A DACA Dreamer in Trump’s America
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Citizenship and Immigration, Class/Socioeconomic Status and Race and Ethnicity
Carolyn Brown
Union Room 333 C
"Rubí: A DACA Dreamer in Trump’s America” tells the story of how the Trump presidency's anti-immigrant stance has imperiled the lives and aspirations of more than 800,000 young adults now registered under DACA. Through revealing interviews, 22-year old Rubi and her parents recount their family's harrowing journey to the United States and their subsequent struggles to survive and succeed. Rubí graduates from college and begins a promising career -- just as DACA is rescinded.

Union Room 314

Bridges Over Borders
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Cultural Humility, Gender Identity and Expression, Race and Ethnicity
Andee Rodriguez; Dr. Mayra Olivares-Urueta
Union Senate Room 332
Invisible borders exist in higher education. Often, these borders become impermeable depending on students’ identities and lived experiences. Presenters will explore these borders and share ideas about how higher education professionals may begin to build bridges to positively affect academic success and equity for students.

Diversity and Ethnicity in Fine Art
Level: Intermediate | Keywords: Race and Ethnicity and Veterans
Michelle Johnson
Union Room 382 A
In this session, participants will respond to various pieces of artwork and use them as discussion topics regarding cultural diversity and ethnicity.

Race and Romance: Navigating Interracial Relationships
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Coalition Building, Race and Ethnicity and Sexuality and Romantic Attraction
Trina Tan
Union Room 382 B
With the ever-evolving population of students on college campuses, institutions are seeing more students in interracial relationships. This interactive workshop provides a space for students to express their unique experiences in interracial/intercultural dating beyond the binary. Participants will have the opportunity to contribute to topics ranging from the fetishization of People of Color, family pressure, intercultural communication, and more.

Creating Inclusive Tutoring Spaces: Identity Training for Student Workers
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Leadership, Mentoring and Organizational Change
Brecken Wellborn
Union Room 333 C
This workshop explores the Learning Center’s Student Worker Identity Training, which was developed for student workers to create inclusive tutoring spaces. This program discusses the variety of services offered by student workers, introduces both Ally Training and Identity Awareness Training for student workers (including activities), and presents qualitative data that analyzes student worker perceptions on identity training.

New Faculty Mentoring at UNT: A Vehicle to Explore Inclusion
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Assessment/Evaluation, Leadership and Mentoring
David Brackett, Ph.D.; Noelle Paufler, Ph.D.; Soo Jeong
Union Room 333 A
This session presents the perceptions and experiences of diverse faculty at UNT. Results indicate that mentoring programs must focus on the unique individual and collective needs of faculty across rank in addition to a multitude of other identifying demographic characteristics. Failure to meet the needs expressed by faculty is likely to contribute to turnover and organizational instability as faculty will choose to work at an institution that recognizes them as partners. Diversification of the university requires a diversified approach to mentoring within the academy. The demographic characteristics of higher education have changed over time, most notably during the last 40 years. According to Finkelstein (2010), faculty composition changed dramatically between 1969 and the early 2000s. Currently, more diverse Generation Xers and the Millennial generation are replacing the Baby Boom generation as they retire (Finkelstein, 2010). The changes in faculty composition require universities to adapt and change in many ways, from how they educate the next generation of faculty to how they recruit, retain, and meet the needs of this new guard.

The Coalition for Change
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Citizenship and Immigration, Coalition Building and Race and Ethnicity
Roxanne Del Rio; Sheryl English; Pat Smith
Union Senate Room 332
The Denton Together Coalition is made up of stakeholders including: business leaders, civil organizations, religious based organizations, citizens, police and fire departments, City of Denton appointed officials, and Institutions of Higher Education (NCTC, TWU, and UNT). The Denton Together Coalition has come together to discuss community issues. In this session, participants will work to identify solutions to problems that affect the city and community.

Creating Social Awareness in the Identity-safe Classroom
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Academic Affairs, Coalition Building and Cultural Humility
Ticily Medley
Union Room 382 A
This session outlines low-stress ways to facilitate the development of social awareness in classroom settings as a method for impacting inclusion. Participants will collaboratively explore methods of encouraging and empowering students to engage in social justice. The facilitator will share examples of successful integration of social awareness in face-to-face and online courses in higher education settings.

Teaching as Social Justice: Using Your Consciousness to Do Meaningful Work and Engineer Change
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Coalition Building, Leadership and Mentoring
Rebecca Halprin
Union Room 382 B
At a time when our country appears more divided than ever – when the value of Black lives is publicly debated, when the rights of immigrants are challenged, and when the chasm between the rich and the poor grows every day – we desperately need urgent course-corrective action. This workshop will examine practical ways in which we can move towards purposeful action, intentional engagement, and meaningful work to engineer the changes we desire. The session focusses on teaching and education as a means to achieving these ambitious outcomes.

Finding a Voice in Media & Sharing Identity Stories
Level: Beginner | Keywords: Race and Ethnicity and Veterans
Harry Benshoff; Carolyn Brown, Tracy Everbach
Union Room 333 C
This panel will explore race and gender stereotypes in the media and how re-creating a stereotyped narrative can empower students of color and women while educating others. Panelists will include faculty, staff, and students who will be discussing their experiences and sharing their work related to the conference theme: “Access Granted: Building Bridges to Inclusion.” Panelists will explore how media-making can be used in the classroom or in the community to inspire change and inclusion.

Keynote Speaker & Closing
Union Room 314

What We Talk About When We Talk About Race

2018 What We Talk About When We Talk About Race

Join us for a special encore presentation of What We Talk About When We Talk About Race in the evening after the conference. The play is included with your registration, so please come and enjoy the show!

The impetus for the production was Toni Morrison’s (1992) concept “American-Africanism,” the idea that what it means to be White in America is very much dependent on a carefully unacknowledged, but nonetheless distinctive othering of the “abiding Africanist presence” (5) that has haunted the nation since its founding. Morrison points out that even today “the habit of ignoring race is understood to be a graceful, even generous liberal gesture” (9-10) that has effects not only for the victims of racism, but also for the “mind, imagination, and behavior” (12) of those who perpetuate it—often unknowingly.

The production emerged over intimate, home-cooked meals among the cast members. Breaking bread together, we gradually began to broach the silences that existed interracially. Gradually, haltingly, we learned to share stories, current and historical, that were hard to tell and, perhaps, harder still to hear. Through those conversations, which frequently moved in fits and starts, we discovered issues that we had to confront if we were ever to begin to have meaningful conversations with each other and, ultimately, with a broader community through the production.

The title of the show is a deliberate attempt to point to the limitations of any production that purports to deal with race. No performance, certainly not one arising in the current political climate, could hope to address the multitude of issues related to race in America. Thus, we limited our scope to what we talked about in our intimate conversations about our experiences. The issues and stories that resonated with us on our journey are the focus of this show.

The performance has been collaboratively written, directed, and performed. It is largely devised, though it contains personal narrative as well as adaptations of literature. All the verbal and visual texts included in the production have emerged from our exchanges and explorations. What you will witness has been informed by considerations of prejudice and discrimination, oppression, racism, white privilege, and white fragility.

One of our primary objectives in the performance is to help the audience, particularly the white members of the audience, recognize that although they do not perceive themselves as racists, they are deeply enmeshed in highly racialized social formations that perpetuate racist ideologies and racist material circumstances; and, no matter how enlightened any of us perceive ourselves to be—and this includes the cast as we have negotiated this process—we cannot hope to begin to dismantle our current social circumstances until we take a hard look at ourselves and the ways in which we are implicated in them. Our ultimate goal is to attempt to address the barriers that inhibit the kinds of hard conversations that we shared in the process of creating this production.

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Inclusive Excellence Award

Inclusive Excellence AwardAs part of a new tradition begun in 2017, the conference also includes a presentation of the Inclusive Excellence Award, presented to those who demonstrate a commitment to excellence in learning, teaching, student development, institutional functioning, and/or engagement in local and global communities. The Division awards a monetary gift to recipients to help continue their work.

Learn more about the inaugural award recipient

2018 External Sponsors

Social Justice Sponsor Inclusive Excellence Award Sponsor Production Sponsor Eagle Sponsor Emerald Sponsor

UNT Sponsors

The Division of Institutional Equity and Diversity thanks all of our internal UNT partners who each year make our Equity and Diversity Conference a success.

Conference Sponsorship Opportunities

In addition to its community building and professional development qualities, the conference provides an opportunity for vendors to showcase their goods and services, and sponsors at various different levels to partner with the Division to demonstrate their commitment to inclusion, equity and diversity. Become a partner for equity, diversity and inclusion as an Equity and Diversity Conference Sponsor! See our sponsorship levels below, and click here to download and complete the sponsorship interest form. You will be contacted by a member of our team to discuss your sponsorship interest.

External sponsorship opportunities for the 2018 conference are now closed. Interested in sponsoring the 2019 conference? Please email the completed form to the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (Diversity.Inclusion@unt.edu) with the subject “2019 E&D Conference Sponsorship.” For additional questions, contact Shani Barrax Moore at (940) 565-3578 or Teresita Hurtado Ramos at (940) 565-3724.

Sponsorship Levels

  • VIP registration for 8 attendees including prepaid parking passes
  • Introduction with keynote speaker
  • Company name and logo printed on conference registration bags
  • Company name and logo listed on Equity and Diversity website
  • Full page ad of your choice in conference program
  • Name on 500 conference t-shirts to be distributed prior to the event
  • VIP registration for 6 attendees including prepaid parking passes
  • Introduction with Social Justice speaker
  • Company name and logo listed on Equity and Diversity website
  • Half page ad of your choice in conference program
  • VIP registration for 6 attendees including prepaid parking passes
  • Naming rights for the Inclusive Excellence Award
  • Company name and logo listed on Equity and Diversity website
  • Half page ad of your choice in conference program
  • VIP registration for 4 attendees including prepaid parking passes
  • WiFi sponsor for the conference
  • Company name and logo listed on Equity and Diversity website
  • Half page ad of your choice in conference program
  • $25 for non-profit or educational entities
  • $100 for corporations or external businesses
  • Fill out the vendor table form

In-kind Donations
We understand that many businesses are not able to provide monetary donations. If you are still interested in contributing to the event, there are additional sponsorship opportunities available in the form of in-kind donations (i.e. gifts, prizes, certificates, products) to be given away throughout the conference. Please contact Shani Barrax Moore at (940) 565-3578 or Teresita Hurtado Ramos at (940) 565-3724 to discuss options and ideas.

Campus Sponsorships
Members of the UNT community can support the Equity and Diversity Conference at special rates. Such support has long been a cornerstone of the conference’s success, and include both monetary and in-kind support.

Note: After clicking the button below, you will be asked to login. You must have a valid EUID and password to view the internal sponsorship information.

Become an internal partner

Previous Keynote Speakers

Soledad O'Brien
Soledad O'Brien, National News Correspondent
Hill Harper
Hill Harper, Actor & Author
Tim Wise
Tim Wise, Author & Activist
Dr. Evelyn Hu-Dehart
Dr. Evelyn Hu-Dehart, Award-Winning Scholar

Dan Savage
Dan Savage, author, journalist, and activist
John Legend
John Legend, Singer, songwriter, and actor
Chelle Luper Wilson
Chelle Luper Wilson, President, Power Moves Communications

Don Lemon
Don Lemon, Journalist & Television Personality
Valeisha Butterfield-Jones
Valeisha Butterfield-Jones, Head of Black Community Engagement, Google
Cuc Vu
Cuc Vu, Chief Diversity Officer for the Human Rights Campaign

Lee Mun Wah
Lee Mun Wah, Documentary filmmaker, author, educator, and master diversity trainer
Vivica Fox
Vivica Fox, Actress, producer and television host

Dr. Derald Wing Sue
Dr. Derald Wing Sue, Educator

Dr. Melissa Harris-Perry
Dr. Melissa Harris-Perry, Professor, TV Host, Speaker, Author
Joaquin Zihuatanejo
Joaquin Zihuatanejo, Poet, spoken word artist, and award-winning teacher