Dear members of the Barnard community,
Welcome back! As we look forward to our new semester together, I urge you to take a moment to ask yourself a few questions:
What can I do to shape our community in just and inclusive ways?
How can I help cultivate a more equitable, welcoming Barnard?
What can I learn to deepen, challenge, or expand my ways of thinking? And how can I put that learning into action?
This mission, truly, belongs to all of us at Barnard. And the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is here to help you as you engage in community-building across differences, learn to shape an equitable society, and promote participatory justice for change. Here are some upcoming opportunities and initiatives supported by our office in coming weeks that can help provide you a starting point and some momentum in the new year:
- Lunar New Year Events, co-sponsored by SGA: Though the mass shooting in California make this year's observance more somber than most, the Barnard community hopes to show solidarity and deepen understanding through our first campus-wide recognition of the Lunar New Year SGA and the Office of DEI will feature a moving wish wall throughout the campus from Friday, January 20, to Friday, January 27, where Barnard community members can share their wishes for the Year of the Rabbit. Related events include calligraphy workshops, a lecture by Prof. Nick Bartlett and Kaitlin Hao titled “A Celebration and Contemplation of Family, Migration, and the Lunar New Year,” and dinner. Learn more about these events here.
- CSAC Community Conversation: Barnard’s Community Safety Advisory Council is holding a campus-wide community conversation on Monday, January 30, 4:30-6 p.m., via Zoom. Safety is the foundation of a welcoming community; this panel will provide perspectives on community safety, on and off campus, as well as ways you can engage in community activities in surrounding neighborhoods and across the city. Add your voice to the conversation, and share your community-centered ideas! Register here and list any safety-related topics you would like to address in the forum. Open to the Barnard campus community (students, faculty, and staff).
- Studying the Now Webinar: Dismantling Anti-Black & Antisemitic Rhetoric: This panel will unpack and contextualize anti-Blackness and antisemitism at a critical moment in our popular discourse. Topics may include celebrity, social media, and race; historical relationships between Black and Jewish people in the United States; the different ways that anti-Black and antisemitic beliefs become linked in contemporary ideology (e.g., “Great Replacement Theory”) and the ways in which they are distinct; and what possibilities exist in culture and scholarship to resist and dismantle both of these bigotries. Tuesday, January 31, 6-7 p.m., via Zoom. Register here. Open to the entire Barnard community (students, faculty, staff, alums, and parents).
- LGBTQ+ Community Circle, co-sponsored by LGBTQ+ Outreach Coordinator and Furman Counseling: Students are invited to the first of this semester’s monthly community circles for LGBTQ+ Barnard students. This is an open space to discuss the experiences of and concerns facing queer and trans students at Barnard and to brainstorm types of support for LGBTQ+ students. Thursday, February 2, 5-6 p.m., in MLC 126. Register here. Open to Barnard students.
- Reproductive Health Grant: Members of the Barnard community are invited to submit proposals for funding to support their research, programming, and teaching related to reproductive rights in a post-Roe context. These grants will be awarded to projects that meaningfully contribute to and help shape the dialogue around reproductive justice, the human rights of women, and the rights of trans and nonbinary people who have the capacity to experience a pregnancy (planned or unplanned), and anyone who may face economic, social, cultural, or political consequences stemming from the Supreme Court’s decision to overturn Roe v. Wade. Proposals are due to firstname.lastname@example.org by March 10. Learn more here. Open to the Barnard campus community (students, faculty, and staff).
- Zora Neale Hurston ’28 Watch Party and Q&A with Professor Monica Miller New PBS American Experience documentary: Zora Neale Hurston: Claiming a Space: The Office of DEI, Sloate Media Center, and the Department of Africana Studies invite you to join us for a Zora Neale Hurston ’28 watch party! The documentary is an in-depth biography of the influential author and Barnard alum, acclaimed 20th-century novelist, folklorist, anthropologist, and Genius of the South. This new documentary highlights Hurston’s groundbreaking anthropological work, which challenged assumptions about race, gender, and cultural superiority. Dinner will be provided by Vinateria, a local, women- and minority-owned business founded by Yvette Leeper-Bueno ’90. Thursday, February 9, 6-8 p.m., Held Lecture Hall, 3rd Floor, Barnard Hall: Register here. Open to the entire Barnard community (students, faculty, staff, alums, and parents).
- DEI Council Grant: Barnard’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council is tasked with understanding how the College can best support all members of the campus community and promote the representativeness of the student body, faculty, and staff. You are invited to submit a proposal that will help foster inclusion, belonging, and equity in our community. The Council would be especially interested in proposals that show collaboration among faculty, students, and staff (or two of three) in planning as well as programming that includes alums, parents, and neighbors. Ideas may include speakers and performances; seminars and workshops; gatherings that bring together distinct constituencies for discussion and relationship building; as well as other programming and initiatives. Submit applications here by March 1. Learn more here. Open to the Barnard campus community (students, faculty, and staff).
I hope you will join me in cultivating a climate of belonging and care through your actions, reflections, and commitments to one another on campus and as you engage with social issues, structural inequities, and community needs within and beyond our gates.
Vice President for Inclusion and Engaged Learning and Chief Diversity Officer