Lehigh’s Council for Equity and Community was joined by Bethlehem’s chapter of the NAACP- National Association for the Advancement of Colored People on the 15th of January to honor the legacy of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King by discussing the underground railroad and our role in its present day form. The event was well-attended by over 50 guests with a large presence of Lehigh University staff, faculty, student and surrounding community members. The event inspired insightful reflection on the meaning of community for all the attendees and how individual conceptions of community affect present-day relationships and interactions.
The event was started off by an elaborate spread of food fit for royalty. This was followed up by the principles that guide effective dialogue as a precursor to the discussion session. The discussion sessions were held in roundtable format with guests sitting at various tables for the discussion sessions where Dr. Jennifer Swann was the moderator.
The discussion had attendees sharing their individual experiences and members of the bethlehem chapter of the NAACP shared their community efforts and engagement practices to ensure a more inclusive Lehigh Valley for all people.
The event closed out with the wise words of Dr. King enjoining us to be aware of the interrelationship of all life and to be our brother’s keeper. This is in line with the inclusive environment that the CEC is trying to achieve on the Lehigh Campus.
As a community, it our responsibility to look out for each other and ensure that every member of the Lehigh Community feels empowered to succeed because in the words of Dr. King- “I can never be what I ought to be until you are what you ought to be, and you can never be what you ought to be until I am what I ought to be.”
Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail: Martin Luther King Jr.'s Letter from Birmingham Jail and the Struggle That Changed a Nation
The CEC welcomes Col. Ty Seidule who is a Professor and Head of the Department of History at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Join us on Wednesday, February 21 as we discuss the history of the Civil War and reflect on its present day effects.
The Center for Community Engagement is hosting a special workshop that will bring faculty and staff together to develop creative strategies to address systemic racial inequality in our society and here at Lehigh. This workshop is intended for all interested faculty and staff whether your research, work and teaching focuses directly on these questions or seems unrelated to them. Dr. Christopher Driscoll and Dr. Seth Moglen will lead the workshop to help us dive deep into racial understandings on college campuses. The Workshop is Wednesday, November 29 from 4pm-6pm in Williams Hall room 080.
The Council for Equity and Community (CEC) welcomes you to the 2017-2018 academic year.
The CEC is made up of colleagues, classmates, mentors and friends who share the goal of creating a more welcoming and inclusive Lehigh. We work to influence university culture and policy by encouraging conversation and collaboration on the wide range of issues related to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
The CEC is responsible for reviewing the results of the annual Lehigh Survey of campus climate and providing recommendations. The survey data for 2016 is now available online for all members of the Lehigh community to read: http://www.lehigh.edu/~inprv/communications/pubsreports.html#lehighsurvey. This summer, we hosted three workshops in which the Lehigh community discussed and sought solutions for the issues identified in the 2015 survey. We will host similar workshops for the results of the 2016 survey and hope you will participate. Each of us has a role to play in this work.
The Council also awards grants to Lehigh student organizations working to build a more inclusive Lehigh. Last academic year, we provided more than $12,000 in funding to develop programming through a selective process. Learn more about the CEC’s grant-making efforts and how to apply here: https://www1.lehigh.edu/diversity/cec/funding.
Recently, our membership met with Vice President for Equity and Community Donald A. Outing to affirm the CEC’s new role as an advisory group supporting the work of the Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Equity. Dr. Outing came to Lehigh in January from West Point to fill this newly created position dedicated to this important work, and we’re excited to align our work with his strategic vision for Lehigh.
We hope you had the opportunity to read President Simon’s letter to the Lehigh community regarding the recent tragic events in Charlottesville, Virginia. We stand firmly with President Simon in recommitting to our shared values and in rejecting hatred, bigotry and intolerance. We ask you to join us in sustaining a welcoming and inclusive culture here at Lehigh.
We are pleased to be joined by newly elected tri-chair Liz Hill, Coordinator in Sociology and Anthropology, who replaces Lori McClaind in our leadership. Lori stepped down after several years of representing the Dean of Students Office on the CEC.
Best wishes for a successful and engaging semester.
Tri-Chairs of the CEC Elizabeth Hill, Coordinator, Sociology and Anthropology Cheryl Matherly, Vice President and Vice Provost, International Affairs Jennifer Swann, Professor, Biological Sciences
Executive Committee of the CEC Clara Buie, Program Director, International Affairs Christopher Burke, Associate Professor, Psychology David Caruso, Project Manager, President’s Office Karen Salvemini, Equal Opportunity Compliance Coordinator, Office of General Counsel Sarah Stanlick, Professor of Practice, Sociology and Anthropology