NVCC Center for Racial Dialogue and Community Transformation Planning for Fall Semester with Robust Schedule of Events | Read the Latest News from NVCC | Naugatuck Valley Community College

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1 September 2020

NVCC Center for Racial Dialogue and Community Transformation Planning for Fall Semester with Robust Schedule of Events

NVCC Center for Racial Dialogue and Community Transformation Planning for Fall Semester with Robust Schedule of Events

The Center for Racial Dialogue and Community Transformation at Naugatuck Valley Community College is planning their events calendar for the fall 2020 semester.  The Center’s mission is to support the College’s mission by facilitating courageous conversations, promoting positive change, and healing in our community. Professor Kathy Taylor, JD, Founding Co-Chair presided over the development of the Center’s new webpage. www.nv.edu/racialdialogue  

Led by three co-chairs from the College, Kathy Taylor, J.D., Associate Professor of Legal Studies; Joseph Faryniarz, Ed.D., Professor of Biological Sciences; and Antonio Santiago, M.S., Dean of NVCC’s Danbury Campus, the Center provides opportunities for students, faculty, staff, and community members to engage in respectful dialogue and learning opportunities concerning diversity and equity. 

Professor Taylor summarized, “The brilliant intellectual and civil rights icon, James Baldwin reminds us that ‘not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.’  Here, at the Center for Racial Dialogue and Communal Transformation, we boldly face and have deep and meaningful dialogue around issues of race, injustice, systemic racism, power, hierarchy, and the multitude of ways that race shapes our experiences, interactions, and informs our perspective.  In this space, we develop concrete plans of action, and offer intellectually challenging workshops that help people challenge and transform their thinking about race. We host book discussions, faculty forums, and community workshops - all in furtherance of one goal - making NVCC and our community more inclusive, equitable, and just. And I invite you to join us!”

In addition to the three founding co-chairs, the Center is supported by a committee of NVCC faculty and staff including: Angela Chapman, Associate Dean of Development; Susan Houilhan, CAPSS Advisor and Retention Specialist; Nikki McGary, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology; Julia Petitfere, M.F.A. Professor of English; Ron Picard, Ph.D., Professor of English; Elma Solomon, M.B.A., Professor of Accounting

The Center’s Fall 2020 Calendar of Events features programming that is shaped by our current context, one full of discussions around race, inequity, disparate outcomes, and racial tensions. 

Throughout this semester, the Center invites participants to think about how we arrived at this very predictable time in history, how our silence abdicated our moral responsibility, how our literature can inform and shape our social justice lens, and how our commitment to a more just and equitable world begins with each of us understanding our place in a world full of both privilege and oppression.

September 21, 2020 at 2 p.m. A Brown Bag Virtual Discussion, "I've stayed Silent for Way Too Long" facilitated by CAPSS Advisor and Retention Specialist Sue Houlihan and Associate Dean Angela Chapman.  The link - https://www.theplayerstribune.com/en-us/articles/lauren-jrue-holiday-nba-racial-injustice

October 1, 2020 at 12:45 p.m. - A Virtual Discussion on Redlining: How We Came to Live Where We Do with Professors Taylor and McGary

Beginning October 5, 2020; 21-Day Racial Equity Habit-Building Virtual Challenge with Professor Kathy Taylor.  The 21-Day Challenge concept was developed many years ago to “advance deeper understanding of the intersections of race, power, privilege, supremacy and oppression.” The Challenge invites participants to complete a syllabus of 21 short assignments (typically taking 15-30 minutes), over 21 consecutive days, that include readings, videos or podcasts. Within the three weeks, participants will meet five times to share personal reflections, shared learning, ponder questions, and plan next steps. The 21-day begins October 5th with meeting dates on 10/7, 10/12, 10/15, 10/20 and 10/26.

November 5, 2020 at 1 p.m.; Literacy and Protest on the Path to Social Justice: A Conversation with Angela Davis and Toni Morrison. Facilitated by Professor Ron Picard on November 5 at 1 p.m. Participants will view the video prior to the virtual discussion on 11/5. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=zLR_TcGHzRU

Stay tuned, beginning January 2021, The Peabody-nominated 14-part Series, Seeing White, with Professor Kathy Taylor and Tim Magee, Bridge to College Director.  By looking directly at the elephant in the room, whiteness, participants will examine the American conversation about race and the stories we tell ourselves about race and ethnicity.

The Center is located in Ekstrom Hall, E518. All events are virtual. The link will be sent in the Weekly Bulletin and posted to the website. All events are open to the public.

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