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December 3, 2018

In August, Ashton Black and I began a new school year at Piedmont College, he for the first time, and I for the Nth time. I have been teaching since I was 21, and now, as the French say, I am a woman of a certain age. This is only important because there’s no male equivalent in discussions of being middle aged. Identity is so firmly rooted in gender stereotypes that we can hardly free ourselves from invisible habits. That was until Generation Z made those of us simply going through the motions look up from our college-ruled notebooks and take note.

November 28, 2018

The Millennium Scholars Program, now in its sixth year, had 10 ten students present research at ABRCMS 2018 (Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students). ABRCMS encourages minority, first generation, veteran and students who are disabled to pursue higher education in STEM. The annual conference was held November 14th through the 17th in Indianapolis, IN. Students had an opportunity to network with STEM faculty and professionals and to hear about current research. Ten Millennium Scholars attended the conference eight presented research posters and two presented their research oral presentations. The group included two seniors, 3 juniors, and five sophomores. Donovan Brown (sophomore, biology) received a prize for his poster presentation on Purification and Crystallization of the Staphylococcus aureus Heme-Regulating Proteins HemA and HssR. Cuyler Luck (junior, chemistry) and Talia Seymore (junior, toxicology) each earned a $300 prize for their oral presentations. Cuyler presented on Quantifying Minimal Residual Disease in Breast Cancer Dormancy and Talia discuss her work on The Effect of Prenatal Exposure to an Environmentally Relevant Phthalate Mixture on Testosterone Levels in Adult Male Mice. Also presenting posters were: Ouniol Aklilu (sophomore, biomedical engineering) Teniola Idowu (junior, biochemistry and molecular biology) Talayah Johnson (senior, biology) David Lee (senior, biochemistry and molecular biology) Ilana Mosely (sophomore, veterinary and biomedical science) Monique Porter (sophomore, microbiology) Crishon Washington (sophomore, computer science)

November 26, 2018

Large community potlucks and school plays where students dress up as Pilgrims and Indians help students learn the familiar story of the very first Thanksgiving. The holiday gives schools an opportunity to bring history to life for their young students. Although it wasn't called Thanksgiving in 1620, the story celebrates Pilgrims and Native Americans coming together to celebrate a successful harvest. But Thanksgiving isn't a celebration for everyone, particularly Native Americans, and navigating that nuance can be difficult for some educators

November 26, 2018

As we consider history and its place in our schools, it is important to ask: how do state-mandated history standards represent indigenous peoples in social studies education? And, in this season of "Thanksgiving," should we revise our curriculum to be more accurate and culturally relevant?

November 2, 2018

The recent shooting attack on people attending services last Saturday morning in a Pittsburgh synagogue has not only left 11 dead, it has sent a shock wave throughout our nation and the world. This type of incident is not unfamiliar to the Jewish people at large, but it certainly is to American Jews who have been able to live a peaceful and assimilated co-existence with their fellow Americans from all racial, religious and ethnic backgrounds. Why does hate for the Jews, a people who constitute only .6 percent of the world’s population, continue to persist after thousands of years – especially since world history has documented, archived and communicated to millions the inhumanity and barbarianism of the Nazis and their strategized Holocaust?

October 31, 2018

More than 60 years after the Brown vs. Board of Education ruling, an analysis of state data shows persistently stark disparities between the racial composition of teachers and students in Pennsylvania’s schools — among the widest gaps in the country. Just 5.6 percent of Pennsylvania’s teachers are persons of color, compared to 33.1 percent of its students.

October 24, 2018

A recent study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health demonstrates the power of affirming transgender youth’s identities: For each additional context (i.e., at home, school, work, or with friends) in which a transgender youth’s chosen name is used, their risk of suicidal behavior is reduced by more than half.

October 15, 2018

As a judge gets ready to hear the evidence, defenders and critics of affirmative action eye the broader audience and politics of the dispute. The images above both circulated widely on social media Sunday afternoon, documenting rallies -- one in Cambridge and one in Boston -- about the trial officially starting today on whether Harvard University discriminates against Asian American applicants.

October 10, 2018

Are we thinking about gender diversity in the sciences all wrong, or at least too simply? New paper proposes a multipronged approach to thinking about and encouraging this diversity, for the benefit of science as a whole.

October 4, 2018

From kindergarten to 5th grade, I went to P.S. 272, a large public elementary school in Canarsie, Brooklyn. I was way ahead of most of my class academically. While the other students completed worksheets, I braided my teacher’s hair, made copies and ran errands. At recess, they stuck us in an empty lot and we entertained ourselves with schoolyard fights. PE meant sitting in the gymnasium for 45 minutes because the teacher didn’t feel like teaching. Science class was cramming too many students into a small room to watch Bill Nye the Science Guy.

October 1, 2018

For a few weeks, a Christian university allowed romance without sex for gay and lesbian couples. But the Board of Trustees says it never approved the change and restored the ban.

September 18, 2018

Author discusses new book on what it means to be Latino at three distinctly different institutions: a liberal arts college, a research university and a regional public university. For two years, Daisy Verduzco Reyes, an assistant professor at the University of Connecticut, sat quietly in the background during Latino student organization meetings at three different colleges. She listened to determine how students thought and talked about what it meant to be Latino and paid attention to what was discussed, what kinds of events were planned and whether or not the group was political.

September 18, 2018

Incident at UMass is the latest in which the police are called on nonwhite people on campus, doing nothing wrong at all. On Friday morning, the tip line at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst received an anonymous call: "A gentleman, African American, bald, red/white pinstripe shirt, dark khakis, large duffel bag on the right shoulder, hanging off a strap, very heavy hanging on the ground, seemed very agitated, walking up the ramp, into Whitmore [a campus building]. I thought I would send that information if someone could go and check, because he seemed like a very upset young man walking into that building."

September 18, 2018

Having female peers -- even just a few of them -- can increase a woman’s odds of making it through her Ph.D. program in the natural sciences, technology, engineering or math, says a new working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research.

September 14, 2018

As conversations continue about the benefits and challenges surrounding free college programs throughout the nation, institutions, states and the federal government have an opportunity to improve college affordability and move towards equitable free college programs, according to education policy experts and college completion leaders featured on “The State of Free College” panel hosted by the Institute for Higher Education Policy (IHEP).

August 31, 2018

The death by suicide of a 9-year-old Colorado fourth grader underscores the challenges surrounding youth mental health — particularly the risks LGBTQ kids face. Jamel Myles was found dead of suicide just days after his mom said he came out as gay to his classmates, the Denver Post reports. Myles, who had come out to his family over the summer, reportedly faced significant bullying from his classmates as he began the new school year.

August 28, 2018

American colleges struggle with racial tensions every year. Some white students -- in incidents that attract widespread attention or in everyday interactions with their minority peers -- convey a lack of understanding about race. A new book, White Kids: Growing Up With Privilege in a Racially Divided America (New York University Press), explores how wealthy white children develop their ideas about race. The author, Margaret A. Hagerman, assistant professor of sociology at Mississippi State University, took a qualitative approach, following young white people as they grew up. She answered questions via email about the book and how her findings relate to current tensions at colleges.

August 24, 2018

“Increased domestic and global access to higher education,” writes Amy Lee in her 2017 book Teaching Interculturally: A Framework for Integrating Disciplinary Knowledge and Intercultural Development, has resulted in having “multiple diversities in any given classroom or academic program.” Lee and her colleagues argue for developing an intercultural pedagogy to help us teach, respect, and value the contributions of all our international and domestic students: “we need intentionally developed pedagogical practices to engage diverse students effectively and respectfully within our classrooms.” This got me thinking: how prepared are faculty to help international students succeed?

August 15, 2018

As a White graduate of a historically Black college, Norton is somewhat unusual – but a lot less unusual as time passes. She’s an example of the growing ethnic diversity on the campuses of the nation’s 100-plus degree-granting historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs). While the presence of White, Latino and Asian students at these schools is not a new phenomenon, they are attending HBCUs in increasing numbers, representing a growing proportion of the student body.

June 27, 2018

Last summer, we implemented gender-neutral bathrooms on campus. The request for gender-neutral bathrooms had come from a student club that presented the administration with a letter of support, rather than a petition, with signatures from supporters across campus. They were intentional about not presenting a petition which, as they explained, would have set an adversarial tone. The leadership of the club also wanted to meet with me to explain why they wanted to add some gender-neutral options for the bathrooms on campus and expressed that the college was a haven for them.