With the support of College of Arts and Sciences Dean Kelly Bidle, in the summer of 2020 Dr. Erica Ryan created a faculty development group for faculty in the college, where departments sent “ambassadors” to make up the first cohort of Antiracism in the Academy in the fall of 2020. In its second year the program became a caucus group for white faculty members seeking to expand their understanding of antiracism and pedagogy, and membership expanded to include faculty from the College of Education and Human Services and the Norm Brodsky College of Business. This program spans the academic year and includes reading, discussion and extension work to bring the impact of the program to the wider university community. Antiracism in the Academy’s goals include the following:
- We want to be an institution whose faculty talk comfortably and honestly about race and racism in and out of the classroom. This matters. Through readings on white supremacy and antiracism faculty participants will interrogate racism and their own racial identity. We will hone the tools necessary to cultivate racial/cultural awareness and the ability to navigate and persist through potentially difficult conversations.
- We want to be an institution that attracts and retains faculty of color and treats them equitably and with respect, for their sake and for the sake of our students. By using the resources available to us to learn more about the experiences of BIPOC faculty across the field of higher ed in hiring, campus life, and P&T, we can commit to antiracist work at the university to help make Rider a place that is more inclusive and more equitable.
- We want to be an institution where students see themselves reflected in our curricular choices and honored in our pedagogical practices. Through analysis of literature on race and belonging in higher education classrooms, we can identify and develop more inclusive pedagogy, design antiracist classrooms, and challenge white supremacy in the academy.
Past and current participants include John Bochanski, Kathy Browne, Quinn Cunningham, Julie Drawbridge, Andrea Drewes, Danielle Jacobs Duda, Rob Isenhower, Bonnie Lehet, Cynthia Martinez, Adam McMahon, Libby Newman, Mark Pearcy, Kelly Ross, Lisa Rufer, Jay Stern, Sarah Trocchio, Allison Weidhaas, and Richard Zdan.