Reunions

Alumni College 2015

Diversity vs. Divergence in Contemporary America: Access to Full Citizenship

Alumni College provides Reunions attendees with the opportunity to experience a three-day crash course on an issue of contemporary relevance. Alumni College courses are taught by a mix of faculty and knowledgeable alumni, and consist of lectures, Q&As, and small-group conferences. The cost is $300 for the entirety of the college. Past colleges have explored issues like religion and healthcare.

This year’s Alumni College’s topic is diversity. Diversity has been a crucial issue for a long time, but the last year has spurred discussion on the issue. The deaths of Michael Brown and Eric Garner by police led to renewed attention to issues of race in America, as did insightful cultural criticism like Ta-Nehisi Coates’ “The Case for Reparations.”

Racial diversity is not the only form of diversity that has been highly polarizing. A growing tide of states have legalized gay marriage, but a person can still be legally fired for being gay or transgender in the majority of states, and anti-gay and anti-transgender bullying and violence remain disturbingly common. And although there are more women in America’s workforce today than men, women still make an average of at least 19% less than men.

Diversity also has a special significance in a place like Reed that is committed to “The Life of the Mind.” In the past decades, professors and students have begun to question whether Reed’s intellectual mission required a more diverse curriculum, which led to a revision of the humanities syllabus in 2010 and, more recently, a student takeover of a humanities 110 lecture last fall. We will explore how diversity impacts Reed’s mission throughout Alumni College.

During alumni college, we will engage with a number of “diversities”– racial, gender, LGBQ, religious, and economic, just to name a few. We ask that people be respectful of presenters and attendees who may be sharing highly personal stories during lecture and discussion.

Questions about Alumni College should be directed to alumni@reed.edu.

Faculty

  • Alea Adigweme '06
  • Rowan Frost, Assistant Dean of Sexual Assault Prevention and Response
  • Esmeralda Herrera ‘14
  • Mary James, Dean for Institutional Diversity and A.A. Knowlton Professor of Physics
  • Yan Lau, Assistant Professor for Economics
  • Margot Minardi, Associate Professor for History and Humanities
  • Melissa Osborne '13

Schedule

The structure described above is captured in the timetable here:

Wednesday (6/10)

Racial and ethnic diversity

Starts

Ends

Modality

Topic

Speaker

1:30 p.m.

1:45 p.m.

Welcome

Gen. Intro.

 

1:45 p.m.

2:30 p.m.

Presentation

National level

2:30 p.m.

3:15 pm.

Presentation

Higher educ.

3:15 p.m.

3:35 p.m.

Break

 

 

3:35 p.m.

4:00 p.m.

Presentation

Reed

4:10 p.m.

5:00 p.m.

Conferences

 

 

Thursday morning (6/11)

Gender and gender identity diversity

9:00 a.m.

9:05 a.m.

Welcome

Gen. Intro.

 

9:05 a.m.

9:50 a.m.

Presentation

National level

9:50 a.m.

10:35 a.m.

Presentation

Higher educ.

10:35 a.m.

10:55 a.m.

Break

 

 

10:55 a.m.

11:20 a.m.

Presentation

Reed

11:30 a.m.

12:20 p.m.

Conferences

 

 

Thursday afternoon

Socioeconomic diversity

1:30 p.m.

2:15 p.m.

Presentation

National level

2:15 p.m.

3:00 p.m.

Presentation

Higher educ.

3:00 p.m.

3:20 p.m.

break

 

 

3:20 p.m.

3:45 p.m.

Presentation

Reed

3:55 p.m.

4:45 p.m.

Conferences

 

 

Friday (6/12)

Synthesis

9:00 a.m.

10:30 a.m.

Conferences

 

 

10:30 a.m.

10:50 a.m.

Break

 

 

10:50 a.m.

Noon

Moderated discussion

Comparison of conferences