How can I reveal my research process?
While developing a prototype for an intervention designed for faculty of color at historically white institutions, I read several academic articles and research about the experiences of these educators. Each text simultaneously resonated with and was distinct from one another.
I created and annotated a physical map of critical contributions and sentiments in the literature. The map also reveals the personal associations I made as a person of color reading about faculty of color.
Materials & dimensions: paper, foam board, cork, sequin pins, embroidery thread. 24” x 45” x 0.5”
How might we help faculty of color at historically White institutions engage with the historical lineage of educators of color?
While working in higher education, I have heard a series of personal anecdotes from faculty of color interacting with their white students and colleagues. Many of these stories underscore the disheartening reality of how academic institutions reproducing racism—from isolation and marginalization to hypervisibility and invisibility. It was clear to me that historically and predominately white institutions (HWIs and PWIs respectively) are often unwelcoming and hostile to faculty of color, so I wanted to design a resource to support those faculty.
At the 2018 Professional and Organizational Development Network conference, I shared some initial research with professors and faculty developers. I collected responses from tailored prompts to aid in my design prototype. Inspired by the scholarship of professor and curator Sarah Elizabeth Lewis, I aimed to create an aesthetic encounter for faculty of color which placed their work and experience in a longer, inspiring lineage of faculty of color.
How can we engage student mentors in praxis?
At Bunker Hill Community College, a cohort of student mentors help with teaching and facilitation in first-year seminars. Outside of class, working with their mentees can range from the academic to the personal—anything that can help first-year students persist to the next semester. In 2014, I supervised this mentoring program, and I was concerned with helping the cohort develop action and care. As Paulo Freire writes, “liberation is a praxis: the action and reflection of men and women upon their in order to transform it” (79). How might praxis positively impact mentoring relationships?
Inspired by Austin Kleon, I designed a tactile activity intended to replicate what Freire describes as the simultaneous occurrence of reflection and action. Through the activity, mentors constructed a “family tree” of their mentors, highlighting which individuals and relationships enabled and affirmed their current mentoring work.