IA TLC – March 11, 2020

Imagining America Teaching + Learning Circle (IA TLC) Webinar Series

Imagining America (IA) invites community cultural producers, faculty, and graduate student instructors from across the national IA network to join our inaugural online Teaching and Learning Circle (TLC) webinar.

IA TLC is an online learning community that builds peer support and conversations about the opportunities, joys, and challenges of designing and delivering community engaged courses and projects.

Organized and facilitated on a quarterly basis by IA staff and featured IA members, each online conversation will engage participants in dialogue and group work around a set of questions and dynamics that emerge from the featured course or project.

Through peer mentorship, support, and critical dialogue participants will provide feedback to the guest facilitators and will have opportunities to share examples from their own community engaged teaching and learning. Participants in each IA TLC conversation will also be invited to share syllabi and resources with one another, creating an online repository of creative and community engaged course and project models.



The Just and Inclusive Campus: Small Wins and Enduring Challenges in Supporting Equity and Public Scholarship

March 11, 2020 | 10:30a-12 Pacific Time / 1:30-3p Eastern Time


The distance between institutional mission statements that tout ‘equity and inclusion’ and the lived experience of graduate students, faculty and staff can be painfully large. This Teaching and Learning Circle (TLC) webinar will reflect on the current state of diversity and inclusion work on academic campuses, and the relationship to engaged teaching and scholarship.
Informed by research on implicit bias and systemic structures that disadvantage some groups over others, our institutions have initiated reforms to graduate education and mentoring, faculty hiring and retention, and the work environment. We have started to see traction in some of these areas and have evidence certain programs are working. In other areas we see much effort but little impact. In this interactive webinar co-facilitated by Kal Alston and KerryAnn O’Meara, we will tease out what we have learned from small wins and successes, as well as failures in diversity work in faculty and graduate student spaces. Participants will be invited to share examples from their own institutions that either worked or failed in creating greater equity, diversity and inclusion in graduate education, faculty hiring, faculty retention, promotion and tenure reform, or the general work climate.




As a part of Imagining America’s new national Leading and Learning Initiative we will host regular Teaching and Learning Circle webinars about critical aspects of fortifying public scholarship. We are pleased to announce the first in this series with an interactive discussion led by KerryAnn O’Meara and Kal Alston on the relationship between initiatives that aim (or claim) to support equity, inclusion, and public scholarship!

Facilitator Biographies

Kal Alston is professor in Cultural Foundations of Education and in Women’s and Gender Studies at Syracuse University. She is Associate Dean for Academic Programs in the School of Education and previously served as Senior Associate Provost and Senior Vice President. In all her appointments, she has been invested in helping academic units leverage all resources and create fruitful collaborations, inside and outside of the University, to broaden the academic impact on and for faculty and students. She was PI of Syracuse’s NSF ADVANCE-IT project, an initiative to increase inclusive faculty recruitment and retention and to expand women faculty’s access to social networks. As a philosopher of education, Alston’s scholarly interests center on intersections of popular culture/media with American experiences of race, class, and gender. She is currently working on analyses of the history of civil rights in US education as it connects to other cultural institutions. Her most recent publications have focused on ethics and higher educational leadership the phenomenal experience of race in philosophical practice, and the relevance of truth in educational practice. She is currently chair of the Imagining America National Advisory Board and the president-elect of the Philosophy of Education Society.

KerryAnn O’Meara is Professor of Higher Education, Associate Dean in the College of Education, and Director of the ADVANCE Program at the University of Maryland College Park. She is President-Elect of the Association for the Study of Higher Education. Kerry Ann’s research examines faculty careers and academic rewards systems with a particular focus on organizational practices that support and limit the full participation of women and URM faculty and engaged scholars. Her work has been widely published. She consults with universities on promotion and tenure policy reform, faculty development programs, and organizational practices that sustain equitable workloads. KerryAnn is PI of an NSF ADVANCE grant, the Faculty Workload and Rewards Project, to work with academic departments on workload equity. KerryAnn lead a pilot that worked with 75 search committees at UMD (2016-2018) and is conducting research on faculty hiring as part of the UMD System AGEP PROMISE project (2018-2023). KerryAnn is an internationally recognized expert on diversity and inclusion in faculty affairs, has completed both longitudinal and randomized control trials on faculty retention and workload reform projects, showing positive results from evidence-based interventions. She is a sought-after speaker, consultant and partner on reforms to make academe more inclusive for women and URMs.