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Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Events

  1. Decompress

    February 3, 2018 - 9:30pm to February 4, 2018 1:00am

    A closing night celebration of No Safety Net

    Having important, often tough, and constructive conversations is worth celebrating. And after three weeks of No Safety Net, with over 20 performances and many community dialogues and workshops, we all deserve a little self-care. Join us for a relaxed closing night celebration featuring DJs from Detroit’s Seraphine Collective, appearances by No Safety Net artists, mixing and mingling, snacks, and a cash bar. Ages 18+. Free entry with a No Safety Net ticket stub, or $5 cover; cash bar.

  2. Gender Identity 101 and Being Transgender in Our Community

    February 3, 2018 - 6:00pm to 7:30pm

    In the last five years, the visibility of transgender people has increased dramatically. From Laverne Cox's meteoric rise to fame portraying a transgender inmate on "Orange is the New Black" to the high profile gender transition of athlete and television personality Caitlyn Jenner, we've entered into a moment where gender identity is at the forefront of our cultural conversation. This combined lecture and panel will provide a basic primer on preferred language around gender identity, and explore the lived experiences of transgender people in our community.

    In collaboration with the U-M Spectrum Center's "My Voice" program, which provides panels of trained LGBTQ+ speakers to share their personal stories with audiences. My Voice panels provide information about LGBTQ+ from personal experiences and facilitate vibrant discussions about topics of attractionality, sexuality, and gender.

    Saturday Night Community Dialogues


    UMS will invite a panel of community leaders, thinkers, and activists to engage with audience members around the themes of each performance. The floor will be open to panelists and audience members alike to reflect on, discuss, analyze, and respond to the performance they've just experienced. Panelists to be announced.

  3. Entering, Engaging and Exiting Communities

    February 2, 2018 - 9:00am to 12:00pm

    This workshop introduces principles and practices for thoughtfully engaging with communities, including motivations, impact of social identities, and strategies for engaging in reciprocal, ethical, and respectful ways. This interactive session engages participants through small and large group activities and discussion, applying principles for effective community engagement to the practice of social work. Offered by Edward Ginsberg Center staff, in partnership with the SSW Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

    RSVP here »

  4. They, Themself, and Schmerm

    January 31, 2018 - 7:30pm to 8:30pm

    Written and performed by Becca Blackwell
    Directed by and developed with Ellie Heyman

    "The audience emerged from the theater with a greater awareness of a sociocultural transformation underway… from confusion to denial, to reconciliation to who-the-****-cares-let-the- love-in…" (Bomb Magazine)

    Part classic standup comedy special, part confessional memoir, and part performance art, They, Themself and Schmerm is Becca Blackwell's disturbingly hilarious personal tale detailing the tragicomic transitions in life, family, sex, and gender while asking what it means to be truly authentic. A New York-based trans actor, performer, and writer, Becca exists between genders and works collaboratively with playwrights and directors to expand our sense of personhood and the body through performance.

    Contains adult language and frank discussion of gender and sexuality.

    This performance is part of UMS's No Safety Net theater festival - a three-week look at works of theater that embrace contemporary social issues. Details available at

    Additional Dates:

    Wednesday, January 31 // 7:30 pm

    Thursday, February 1 // 7:30 pm

    Friday, February 2 // 8 pm

    Saturday, February 3 // 8 pm

    Watch Excerpts from They, Themself and Schmerm.

  5. Navigating LGBTQ Identities in the Academy

    January 30, 2018 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

    Panel of experts will discuss their experiences in navigating their LGBTQ identities in the academia. Participants will also be given strategies. 

    Registration is required:

  6. DEI Movie Event: I Am Not Your Negro

    January 29, 2018 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm

    The SSW DEI Office will be hosting a movie showing to celebrate MLK Day and the upcoming Black History Month. We will be showing the documentary I am Not Your Negro which explores the history of racism in the United States through James Baldwin's recollections of civil rights leaders and his personal observations of American history. Food will be provided.

    RSVP here »

  7. Entering, Engaging and Exiting Communities

    January 27, 2018 - 9:00am to 12:00pm

    This workshop introduces principles and practices for thoughtfully engaging with communities, including motivations, impact of social identities, and strategies for engaging in reciprocal, ethical, and respectful ways. This interactive session engages participants through small and large group activities and discussion, applying principles for effective community engagement to the practice of social work. Offered by Edward Ginsberg Center staff, in partnership with the SSW Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

    RSVP here »

  8. Trans Health Activism in Detroit: Moving Forward Together

    January 26, 2018 - 2:00pm to 4:00pm

    Detroit transgender and gender nonconforming communities are leading a movement to demand safety, opportunity, and access to health and wellness services. This panel will discuss the work being done as part of that movement at the Ruth Ellis Center, a youth social services agency that serves LGBTQ youth experiencing homelessness and residential instability. Speakers will include leaders from the Ruth Ellis community, as well as members of the medical and behavioral health teams. This event is part of the University's annual MLK Symposium.


    Amara Marley

    Brandi Smith

    Lance Hicks, MSW 

    Tyffanie Walton, EIS


    ​Maureen Connolly, MD
    Department of Pediatrics
    Henry Ford Health System

    Venue Accessibility

    Accessible entrance with power doors at South side, near the circle drive. Take elevator to 2nd floor. A gender neutral restroom is located on the 3rd floor, room #343T.

    Questions? Contact

  9. White Fragility-The New Racism, and More Effective Steps to Undoing Racism

    January 25, 2018 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm

    Andy Horning will be speaking about White Fragility, and how a focus on our own process can lead to better more effective steps to undoing racism. A 1997 graduate of the School of Social Work, Andy Horning is a therapist in private practice in Boulder, Colorado. He is on the faculty of the Hoffman Institute, a personal growth retreat site in California and is also the founder and host of Elephant Talk, a podcast on courageous conversation in relationships. Lunch will be provided.

    RSVP Here »

  10. High Stakes Culture: What Does It Mean to Take a Knee?

    January 23, 2018 - 5:30pm to 7:00pm

    In the last few months a series of “culture wars” have been ignited across the country. Activists from all points of the political spectrum, even the President of the United States himself, are turning to beloved cultural objects to stake a claim for their differing beliefs in a politically fraught moment. Black athletes are taking a knee. Anti-immigration voters are rallying for a wall. Long-standing Confederate monuments are coming down.

    What is at stake in the ways we understand culture and cultural conflict? High Stakes Culture is a new series, presented by the Institute for the Humanities and the Humanities Collaboratory, that brings humanities perspectives to bear on current debates. Join us as we ask: How and why does culture matter so much now?

    Join the conversation as humanities scholars Angela Dillard (Afroamerican and African studies and Residential College), Matthew Countryman (history and American culture), Mark Clague (music), and Kristin Hass (American culture) tackle these questions and others you might have about high stakesculture now.

    When did sports and patriotism become so deeply linked?
    Has the flag always been viewed as sacred and purely a symbol of the armed forces?
    Where did the national anthem come from, and have people always stood when it is played?
    Who gets to decide what symbols deserve respect and what counts as a gesture of respect?

  11. Raised Right: Fatherhood in Modern American Conservatism

    January 23, 2018 - 3:00pm to 4:30pm

    How has the modern conservative movement thrived in spite of the lack of harmony among its constituent members? What, and who, holds together its large corporate interests, small-government libertarians, social and racial traditionalists, and evangelical Christians?

    In his new book, Raised Right: Fatherhood in Modern American Conservatism (Stanford University Press, 2017), Jeffrey R. Dudas, pursues these questions through a cultural study of three iconic conservative figures: National Review editor William F. Buckley, Jr., President Ronald Reagan, and Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Examining their papers, writings, and rhetoric, Dudas identifies what he terms a "paternal rights discourse"—the arguments about fatherhood and rights that permeate their personal lives and political visions.

    For each, paternal discipline was crucial to producing autonomous citizens worthy and capable of self-governance. This paternalist logic is the cohesive agent for an entire conservative movement, uniting its celebration of "founding fathers," past and present, constitutional and biological. Yet this discourse produces a paradox: When do authoritative fathers transfer their rights to these well-raised citizens? This duality propels conservative politics forward with unruly results. The mythology of these American fathers gives conservatives something, and someone, to believe in—and therein lies its timeless appeal.

    Jeffrey R. Dudas is Associate Professor of Political Science and Affiliate Faculty of American Studies at the University of Connecticut. He specializes in the areas of American law, politics, and culture and focuses, in particular, on the many facets of the American politics of rights.

    Cosponsored by the Department of Sociology, Department of Women's Studies, and History Department

    Event Accessibility: Ramp and elevator access at the E. Washington Street entrance (by the loading dock). Power doors are at every accessible entrance. Gender neutral restroom on 1st floor. Questions? Contact

    Book sales provided by Common Language Bookstore

  12. Celebrate People's History

    January 19, 2018 - 11:00am to 5:00pm

    Celebrate People’s History
    Curated by Josh MacPhee
    Exhibition Dates: January 19 - February 25, 2018

    The Celebrate People’s History (CPH) posters are rooted in the do-it-yourself tradition of mass-produced and distributed political propaganda. They are detourned to embody principles of democracy, inclusion, and group participation in the writing and interpretation of history. In dark times, it’s rare that a political poster is celebratory, and when it is, it almost always focuses on a small canon of male individuals: MLK, Ghandi, Che, or Mandela. Rather than create another exclusive set of heroes, curator Josh MacPhee decided to generate a diverse set of posters that bring to life successful moments in the history of social justice struggles. To that end, MacPhee asked artists and designers to find events, groups, and people who have moved the collective struggle of humanity forward in order to create a more equitable and just world. The resulting posters tell stories from the subjective position of the artists, and are often the stories of underdogs, those written out of history. The goal of the project is not to tell a definitive history, but to suggest a new relationship to the past.

    Today the CPH posters grace the walls of dorm rooms, apartments, community centers, classrooms, and city streets. 115 different designs have been printed in the past 20 years, adding up to over 300,000 total posters. Although MacPhee has organized and funded the posters himself, they have always been a collective project. Over one hundred artists and writers have created posters, multiple printshops have done the printing, dozens of people have run around at night pasting them on the street, and thousands have helped distribute them around the world.

    The Celebrate People’s History Poster Series has been organized and curated by Josh MacPhee since 1998.

  13. The Other America: Still Separate. Still Unequal

    January 19, 2018 - 8:00am to 5:00pm

    This interdisciplinary mini-conference will focus on racial inequality as it manifests in relation to the lived experiences of black Americans. Throughout the day, panelists will discuss the criminal justice system and state violence against black people, economic inequality and immobility, inequities in healthcare and education, and issues pertaining to race and the environment. Registration is required. The event is free and open to the public.

    RSVP here »

  14. Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color

    January 18, 2018 - 6:00pm to 7:00pm

    Drawing from her recent book, Andrea Ritchie examines how Black women, Indigenous women, and women of color experience racial profiling, police brutality, and immigration enforcement. Placing stories of individual women—such as Sandra Bland, Rekia Boyd, Dajerria Becton, Monica Jones, and Mya Hall—in the broader context of the twin epidemics of police violence and mass incarceration, Ritchie documents the evolution of movements centering women’s experiences of policing and demands a radical rethinking of our visions of safety and the means we devote to achieving it.

    Andrea Ritchie, J.D., is a Black lesbian immigrant whose writing, litigation, and advocacy has focused on policing of women and LGBT people of color for the past two decades. She is currently Researcher in Residence on Race, Gender Sexuality and Criminal Justice at the Barnard Center for Research on Women’s Social Justice Institute, and was a 2014 Senior Soros Justice Fellow. She is the author of Invisible No More: Police Violence Against Black Women and Women of Color (Beacon Press, 2017), co-author of Say Her Name: Resisting Police Brutality Against Black Women (African American Policy Forum, July 2015), and Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States (Beacon Press, 2011). Andrea is also an experienced litigator, policy analyst and advocate. Follow her on Twitter: @dreanyc12

    Presented with the Departments of Political Science and Women's Studies

  15. Entering, Engaging and Exiting Communities

    January 18, 2018 - 5:00pm to 8:00pm

    This workshop introduces principles and practices for thoughtfully engaging with communities, including motivations, impact of social identities, and strategies for engaging in reciprocal, ethical, and respectful ways. This interactive session engages participants through small and large group activities and discussion, applying principles for effective community engagement to the practice of social work. Offered by Edward Ginsberg Center staff, in partnership with the SSW Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Food will be provided.

    RSVP here »

  16. Claudia Rankine With P. Carl Theater Matters: Activism, Imagination, Citizenship

    January 18, 2018 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm

    Macarthur “Genius” Fellow Claudia Rankine and dramaturg P. Carl explore ways that contemporary theater and performance can catalyze and promote social justice in America. Rankine and Carl are currently collaborating on the upcoming world premiere of Rankine’s play The White Card. Claudia Rankine is the author of five collections of poetry, including Citizen: An American Lyric and Don’t Let Me Be Lonely; two plays, including Provenance of Beauty: A South Bronx Travelogue; and numerous video collaborations. She is the editor of several anthologies, including The Racial Imaginary: Writers on Race in the Life of the Mind. Rankine is a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and teaches at Yale University as the Frederick Iseman Professor of Poetry. P. Carl is the Distinguished Artist-in-Residence at Emerson College and a writer and lecturer on theater, gender, and inclusive practices. He is the former director of HowlRound Theatre Commons and the recipient of the 2017 Art of Change Fellowship from the Ford Foundation.

    This Penny Stamps Speaker Series event is the keynote event for No Safety Net, a series by UMS.

    Co-presented by the University Musical Society.

  17. 1968 + 50: Unfinished Legacies of Dr. King’s Last Year Department of History / Eisenberg Institute Martin Luther King Jr. Day Symposium

    January 15, 2018 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

    On April 4, 1967, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered the speech "Beyond Vietnam-A Time to Break Silence." Exactly one year later, he was assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee, where he had been supporting striking sanitation workers. The last year of King's life marked a distinctive period in his career as he allied himself with a broad array of initiatives linking civil rights with antiwar, labor, and antipoverty campaigns. This panel will consider the legacy of that year, stretching from the social justice movements of the late 1960s to causes today such as Black Lives Matter, immigrant rights, and attempts to reverse the growing gap of socioeconomic inequality.


    Ruth Feldstein, Rutgers University-Newark

    Monica Muñoz Martinez, Brown University

    Brenda Tindal, Detroit Historical Society

    Ruth Feldstein is professor of history and American studies at Rutgers University-Newark. She is the author of several books and articles, most recently the award-winning book, How It Feels To Be Free: Black Women Entertainers and the Civil Rights Movement; she is also associate producer of How It Feels to Be Free, a forthcoming documentary based on this book. Feldstein's scholarship explores relationships between race and gender relations, and between performance and politics; she works to tell the stories of women whose voices have not been heard, and who are seldom taken seriously as thinkers and activists.

    Monica Muñoz Martinez, Carnegie Fellow 2017-2019, received her PhD in American studies from Yale University. At Brown University she offers courses in Latinx studies, immigration, histories of violence, histories of policing, and public memory in US History. Her research has been funded by the Mellon Foundation, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the Recovering the US Hispanic Literary Heritage Project, the Brown University Office of Vice President of Research, and the Texas State Historical Association. Her first manuscript, The Injustice Never Leaves You: Anti-Mexican Violence in the Texas Borderlands, is under contract with Harvard University Press. She is a faculty fellow at the John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America. Martinez is the primary investigator for Mapping Violence, a digital project that documents histories of racial violence in Texas.

    Public historian, archivist, curator, and educator Brenda Tindal joined the Detroit Historical Society as director of education in December 2017. She is the former staff historian and senior vice president of research and collections at Levine Museum of the New South in Charlotte, NC. In 2005, she was part of the curatorial team that developed Courage: The Carolina Story that Changed America, an exhibit on the region's role in the landmark school desegregation case, Brown v. Board of Education (1954), which won the National Award for Museum Service-the nation's highest honor awarded to museums and libraries. Tindal recently co-curated the museum's K(NO)W Justice K(NO)W Peace-a rapid-response exhibit that explores the historical roots of the distrust between police and community, tells the human stories beyond the headlines, and engages viewers in creating constructive solutions. Before joining the Levine Museum of the New South in 2015 as staff historian, Tindal was a visiting lecturer in the Department of History and Honors College at the University of North Carolina Charlotte, where she taught a broad range of courses in comparative U.S. and South African history, southern history, African American history, and visual and material culture. A sought after social commentator, convener, and speaker, Tindal has been featured on C-SPAN, the Knight Foundation's Media Learning Seminar, Happenings Magazine, NPR, Pride Magazine, NBC-Today, The Charlotte Observer, and many other local and national news and media outlets.

    Free and open to the public.

    This event made possible by the Kalt Fund for African American and African History, along with the Department of History and the Eisenberg Institute for Historical Studies.

  18. Athletic Department MLK Town Hall

    January 15, 2018 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

    Dean Lynn Videka and Associate Professor Robert Ortega are panelists at the athletic department MLK Town Hall. Sociologist and civil rights activist, Dr. Harry Edwards is the keynote speaker. Edwards has a long and storied history of activism focused upon developments at the interface of sport, race, and society. He may be best known as the architect of the Black Power Salute protest by athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City.

    This town hall and panel discussion will focus on tangible ways in which we can move from protests to progress and how athletes can best use their platforms to help shape change.

  19. The 32nd Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Symposium Memorial Keynote Lecture

    January 15, 2018 - 10:00am to 11:30am

    Keynote: Hill Harper

    Award-winning actor, best-selling author and philanthropist Hill Harper will deliver the keynote address for the 2018 MLK Symposium Lecture. There will be a special guest performance by Aisha Fukushima, singer, public speaker, educator and founder of RAPtivism, a hip-hop centric project that focuses on global efforts for freedom and justice. The event is sponsored by The Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan with support from the William K. McInally Memorial Lecture Fund, and the Office of Academic Multicultural Initiatives, a unit under the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. For more information about the 2018 MLK Symposium, visit

  20. Owning Expertise: A Live Experiment in How Credibility Works and How Ideas Rise

    January 11, 2018 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm

    This interactive keynote lecture presents current data on the demographics of public discourse, and addresses core questions of thought leadership: what do we know, why does it matter, and how can we maximize our impact? We will also do a large-group experiment in credibility. Participants will walk away with bold ideas, a deeper sense of what they, as well as their colleagues, know and stand for, and actionable steps.

    What is The OpEd Project?

    The OpEd Project is a think tank and leadership organization founded to ensure the full range of human voices is included in history. OpEd accelerates the ideas and public impact of underrepresented voices, including women. One near term goal is to increase the volume of women thought leaders in key commentary forums—which are a key source of history—to a tipping point. Partnering with universities, think tanks, non-profits, and corporations, OpEd targets and trains underrepresented experts (including women) to take thought leadership positions in their fields connecting them with a network of high-level journalist mentors; and channeling the best new experts and ideas to media across all platforms. Op-ed is used (which is defined broadly, to mean an idea of public value in any media platform) as a strategic metric of concrete results.

    Presented by the Institute for the Humanities, College of LSA, and the U-M ADVANCE Program.

  21. India's Archaeological Heritage Since Independence: Challenges and Dilemmas

    January 8, 2018 - 4:00pm to 5:30pm

    Nayanjot Lahiri, Ashoka University

    India's archaeological heritage has continued to grow in many different ways since independence, even as the monuments and relics, sites and sculpture remain vulnerable and compromised. This lecture will look at the challenges and pressures on this heritage as a consequence of developments arising from the impact of accelerated industrialization and mega projects, the antiquity trade protected by mafias of various kinds, the state of government-funded institutions, and the adjudication of legal disputes relating to monuments. The lecture will also offer some possible solutions on how India's heritage can be made to matter more than it does at present.

    Nayanjot Lahiri is a historian and archaeologist of ancient India and a professor of history at Ashoka University. Prof. Lahiri won the 2013 Infosys Prize in the humanities for her contribution towards the integration of archaeological knowledge with the historical understanding of India from the earliest times. She also won the 2016 John F. Richards prize for her book Ashoka in Ancient India. Her books includeThe Archaeology of India Trade Routes (1992), Finding Forgotten Cities (2005),Marshalling the Past -Ancient India and its Modern Histories (2012), Ashoka in Ancient India (2015) and Monuments Matter: India's Archaeological Heritage Since Independence (2017). She has edited The Decline and Fall of the Indus Civilization(2000) and an issue of World Archaeology entitled "The Archaeology of Hinduism" (2004).

  22. All About the ADA and Accommodations!

    December 15, 2017 - 10:00am to 12:00pm

    If you are providing a service, it is important to know the best ways to communicate with and about individuals who may have disabilities. This session will help you to understand how to best serve individuals with disabilities, and will also give you some etiquette pointers that you can use in your everyday life. In addition, you will find useful information in this session if you are someone who needs an accommodation.

    You will learn to:

    Recognize the impact of language as it pertains to the topic of disability

    Apply specific tips for communicating with individuals with disabilities, including individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing and individuals who are blind or have low vision

    Determine when your own unintentional biases and assumptions concerning individuals with disabilities are interfering with your ability to provide quality service

    Use appropriate questions in order to determine whether an individual with a disability requires assistance or an accommodation

    Identify ways to better help individuals with disabilities, including those who are accompanied by service animals

    Learn about providing and receiving accommodations

    And more!

    You will benefit by:

    Recognizing how to appropriately and effectively engage with co-workers, members of the public, and others who may have a disability

    Understanding how to best serve individuals with disabilities

    Learning some etiquette pointers to use in your everyday life

    Learn how to engage in the interactive process and request an accommodation

    Presenter: Christina Kline, Disability Coordinator

  23. Workshop on Poverty and Inequality

    December 15, 2017 - 9:00am to 10:30am

    This workshop series, sponsored by Poverty Solutions, is designed to engage PhD students in an ongoing dialogue on poverty in America and to explore poverty-related research. 

    12/1/17: Detroit Community-Academic Urban Research Center with director Dr. Barbara Israel and Donele Wilkins, CEO of Green Door Initiative. Topic: Community-Academic Research Partnerships

    12/15/17: Professor William Elliott, School of Social Work

    Interested students are invited to contact Poverty Solutions Administrative Coordinator Damien Siwik at

  24. Stress-LESS Thursday

    December 7, 2017 - 12:00pm to 2:00pm

    We understand that finals are stressful. Join the DEI Office for a self-care break. Come play board games, grab a healthy snack, color, or make a wonderful stress ball companion.

  25. A Call to Action: Help Create an Alternative Event

    December 6, 2017 - 5:00pm to 8:00pm

    The School of Social Work is leading a collaborative effort to organize an alternative event if Richard Spencer comes to speak on campus. This would not be a protest or counter protest, but rather a separate event that celebrates social justice. While U-M considers his request, students, faculty and staff are mobilizing. The goal is to have a fully-formed action plan and be ready to move swiftly when more details become available.

    Are you interested in helping to plan such an event and collaborate with other graduate schools on campus? Join us for an initial organizing meeting, open to all who are willing to come and share support and ideas for our community.

    Dinner will be provided. 

    RSVP here »

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