Belonging and Inclusion Summit

Student Life Belonging and Inclusion Summit

Save the Date: Wednesday, October 26, 2022

The Ohio Union

More information to come.


“Cultivating a Community Committed to Equity-Minded Practices”

Wednesday, January 19, 2022 | Virtual

10 a.m. – 2:45 p.m.

The Student Life Belonging and Inclusion Summit is a half-day experience for staff to engage with peers, practices and reflection centered in diversity, equity, and inclusion. The inaugural Summit: “Cultivating a Community Committed to Equity-Minded Practices” is intentionally designed for Student Life staff to expand their own awareness of self; to develop skills and tools for equity-minded reflection and practice; and to strengthen the culture of care for staff and students.

As we continue to grapple and overcome multiple inequities magnified by the COVID-19 pandemic and grow together as a the Office of Student Life, it is imperative that we commit to understanding and creating work environments that foster equitable and thriving participation of all groups and seek to address issues of oppression, privilege and power. To do this, we must offer ourselves and each other care, being thoughtful and considerate as we move forward in our vision, mission, and strategic goals.


Recordings and Resources for Continued Learning

Thank you for engaging with us at the inaugural Student Life Belonging and Inclusion Summit.

To view the Summit’s recordings and resources for continued learning, please visit Life Staff access only.


Keynote Speaker: Dr. Shaun Harper

“Cultivating a Community Committed to Equity-Minded Practices”

Shaun Harper, PhD is an American scholar and racial equity expert in the United States of America. He also is one of the most highly ranked, cited, quoted, and prolific professors in the field of racial education. Harper is the Clifford and Betty Allen Professor at the University of Southern California Rossier School of Education, and the Executive Director of the USC Race and Equity Center. He spent a decade at the University of Pennsylvania, where he had tenure as a professor and founding executive director of the Center for the Study of Race & Equity in Education. He is best known for his extensive research on topics such as gender and race in social and educational contexts, equity trends and climate issues on college campuses, Black and Latino male student success in urban high schools and in universities/colleges, college student engagement, and intercollegiate athletics.

He has published 12 books and over 100 peer-reviewed journal articles as well as other academic publications and has received more than $12 million in research grants and contracts. Some of his books include “Closing the Opportunity Gap: Identity-Conscious Strategies for Retention and Student Success” (2016), “Advancing Black Male Student Success From Preschool Through Ph.D.” (2015), “Student Services: A Handbook for the Profession” (2010), and “Student Engagement in Higher Education: Theoretical Perspectives and Practical Approaches for Diverse Populations” (2014). Harper’s research has been cited in over 7,000 published studies. He is president of the Association for the Study of Higher Education and was previously a member of President Barack Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper Alliance Advisory Council. Harper has been recognized in Education Week as one of the 10 most influential professors in the field of education.


Program Sessions (January 2022)

Program Sessions I

Title: Tempered Radicalism as a Strategy for Change

Presenter: Todd Suddeth, PhD

Abstract: Tempered radicals are "individuals who identify with and are committed to their organizations, and are also committed to a cause, community, or ideology that is fundamentally different from, and possibly at odds with the dominant culture of their organization". The purpose of this session will be to present information about this strategy for change and how to effectively sustain this practice while acknowledging the challenges of this role at work.

Core Content Area(s): 2

Target Audience(s):

  • Assistant/Associate Directors
  • Directors/Managers/Supervisors
  • New Professionals/Graduate Associates

 Intercultural Competence

Presenter: Michaela Dengg

Abstract: This interactive session will teach attendees basic principles and skills of intercultural competence and consider ways to apply them in their everyday life. Attendees can then put their newly learned skills to work in an intercultural exercise.

Core Content Area(s): 1

Target Audience(s): All Student Life Staff


Title: An Interactive Workshop on Designing Accessible and Inclusive Programs

Presenter: Cheryl Lyons, Kelly Bonice

Abstract: How do we ensure that the programs and events we plan are accessible and inclusive for individuals of all abilities? Attendees of this workshop should have one specific program or event that they are connected to in mind. Attendees will learn about some best practices and resources for inclusive design and then will workshop in small groups to apply the principles to their programs to come up with ideas on how the event could be planned to be more inclusively.

Core Content Area(s): 2

Target Audience(s): All Student Life Staff


Title: Identity-Conscious Supervision in Student Affairs: An Applied Model

Presenter: Anna Wagner

Abstract: This presentation will introduce the Identity Conscious Supervision in Student Affairs Model (Brown, Desai and Elliot, 2020) as well as a variety of models for assessing your current supervision relationships and workplace models. Participants will also engage in reflection about their own supervision style and set application goals for developing a more identity-conscious approach to supervision.

Core Content Area(s): 2 and 3

Target Audience(s): All Student Life Staff


Title: Why Wellness Matters: Exploring the 9 Dimensions, Health Equity, and Self-Care

Presenter: Jordan Helcbergier

Abstract: In this session, attendees will explore the nine dimensions of wellness as they relate to intercultural competence and health equity, review data from the Wellness Assessment and discuss simple changes to create a more supportive environment for our students and peers.

Core Content Area(s): 3

Target Audience(s):

  • New Professionals/Graduate Associates
  • All Student Life Staff


Program Sessions II

Title: White Caucus for Racial Justice

Presenter: Nick Gilbert

Abstract: Following an overview of our socialization into race, racism, and antiracism, this space is intended for white staff members in order to work through guilt and other barriers that hold white people back from effective racial justice work. Antiracism calls on white people to be active dismantlers of oppression and this caucus will serve as a space for white staff to ask questions, hold each other accountable, and leave with tangible action steps towards racial justice.

Core Content Area(s): 1, 2, and 3

Target Audience(s): All Student Life Staff


Title: Floating like Butterflies, Stinging like Bees in Social Justice Education

Presenter: Madison Woods

Abstract: This session explores the idea of buzz words used in student affairs and how social justice terminology is quickly losing its intended meaning of actively creating inclusive higher education institutions where marginalized students feel like they matter and belong. The presenter will define how the intention behind the use of social justice terminology differs from the impact on students, and how student affairs practitioners can begin thinking about creating actionable items and prevent the negative impact of buzz words.

Core Content Area(s): 2

Target Audience(s):

  • New Professionals/Graduate Associates
  • All Student Life Staff


Title: Deconstructing and Reconstructing Student Programs Through a Critical Lens

Presenter: Jen Pelletier

Abstract: Dominant narratives surround us and influence the work we do with students. This session will introduce a critical framework to help deconstruct our programming by naming ideologies and power relationships we may take for granted. We will also introduce tools to reconstruct by re-imagining programs that foster student agency and build interest convergence. Attendees will have the opportunity to apply these concepts to one of their actual programs or utilize shared examples.

Core Content Area(s): 2

Target Audience(s):

  • Assistant/Associate Directors
  • New Professionals/Graduate Associates


Title: Queer as Frat: A Theoretical Investigation of Queer Identities in Fraternity

Presenter: Hunter Hartwig

Abstract: Sorority and Fraternity Life Staff will provide a thorough review of the literature on fraternal masculinities, the queer college identity, and queer fraternity men. The goal of this presentation is to provide practitioners across all Student Life disciplines with a new perspective on what student involvement can be like for our population of queer men in historically white fraternities and other student organizations. Recognizing the impact of hypermasculine cultures on queer men in these organizations can help practitioners build skills around supporting these students, recognizing concerning behaviors, and changing fraternity culture long-term.

Core Content Area(s): 1 and 2

Target Audience(s):

  • Assistant/Associate Directors
  • New Professionals/Graduate Associates


Core Content Areas

The 2022 Student Life Belonging and Inclusion Summit program sessions will focus on:

  • Core Content Area #1: Exploring and expanding awareness of self and others Increasing capacity to observe self and our communities—to take notice of and pay attention to patterns within our thoughts, feelings, and behaviors and how they affect others in the workplace
    • Articulate a foundational understanding of equity and what it means to be equity-minded in the workplace
    • Reflection the systems of socialization that influence one’s multiple identities and sociopolitical perspectives and practices
    • Connect and build diverse relationships with new and old Student Life Staff
  • Core Content Area #2: Developing skillsets and capacity for equity-minded reflection and practice Considering what it means to cultivate equity deeply and robustly and learning equity literacy tools that lead to inclusive and meaningful work
    • Identify ways to integrate knowledge of social justice, inclusion, oppression, privilege, and power into one’s immediate and long-term practice.
    • Discuss ways to show up in the workplace as advocates and allies for marginalized people and groups
    • Discover how to design activities, events and programs that are fundamentally inclusive and equitable
  • Core Content Area #3: Strengthening the culture of care for staff and peers Understanding that the work of belonging and inclusion is critical to the individual success and well-being of each staff member and the collective success/responsibility of the Office of Student Life
    • Consider opportunities to show genuine and desired appreciation and care
    • Feel empowered to speak up and respond when inequality occurs in the workplace
    • Examine nine dimensions of wellness to infuse in staff culture and expectations

Student Life Belonging and Inclusion is committed to advancing a student-and-staff centered culture that is dedicated to inclusive and equitable practices and preparing students and staff to be engaged, equity-minded global citizens.

Post-Summit Community Roundtable Reflections

Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Reflect on and process your time at the Summit for maximum effectiveness in implementing what you learned. Join the Summit Committee and continue to explore ways in which we can expand our awareness of self; develop skills and tools for equity-minded reflection and practice; and strengthen the culture of care for ourselves, each other, and students.