Conversations About Inclusion

Butler Center is introducing a new series called ‘conversations about inclusion’ this fall (2017). The main goal of this series is to facilitate thinking about inclusion on campus. While panelists may utilize scholarly research and literature and/or experience. it may be relevant to think of strategies and initiatives that facilitate inclusion. The series will focus on topics that will be meaningful for faculty as well as staff and students. Each panelist will speak for a maximum of 10 minutes and most of the time will be devoted to discussions and Q&A.

Role of Religion in Inclusion
You can find the recorded session here

In this session on the role of religion in inclusion, panelists - Gulcin Con, Graduate student in
Sociology, Carolyn Johnson, Director, Diversity Resource Office, Ashley Purpura, Assistant
Professor, Interdisciplinary Studies, and Renee Thomas, Director, Black Cultural Center –
deliberated on the question, “How can we enable understanding religious differences that will
facilitate inclusion?” Panelists discussed how professors and institutions can be inclusive of the
lived experiences of students, faculty, and staff as they engage (or not) with religion. Panelists
reinforced the need to challenge monolithic notions of people who practice different religions
including those who are religiously unaffiliated. Given how religion plays a role in people’s
daily lives, including people who are not religious but may enjoy cultural celebrations associated
with certain religions, panelists provided suggestions about how we can be inclusive without
being intrusive about people’s religious beliefs.

Everyday practices that can foster inclusion
You can find the recorded session here 
In this session on everyday practices that can foster inclusion, panelists - Jean Beaman, Assistant
Professor, Sociology, Angela Goldenstein, Managing Director, MEERCat Purdue, Rhonda
Phillips, Dean, Purdue Honors College, and Rachel Scarlett, Graduate student, Department of
Agricultural & Biological Engineering – deliberated on the question, “How can everyday
practices create a truly sustainable, beneficial, and diverse culture?” Discussions in this session
highlighted racialized and gendered experiences of under-represented groups on campus and in
the community. Panelists emphasized the role of allies in fostering inclusion at Purdue.
Discussions also included the challenges and suggestions for creating sustainable initiatives at
Purdue University that can foster inclusion in everyday practices.

Spring 2018 : Conversations about Inclusion

Topic 1

2/9 Fri

12:00-1:30 pm

West Faculty Lounge

Inclusivity in Mentoring (faculty, staff, and students)

How can we foster inclusive practices in mentoring students and faculty so that they succeed and excel? Based on your experiences, what suggestions do you have for others?

Panel: Zenephia Evans, Ala Samarapungavan



Topic 2

2/23 Fri

12:00-1:30 pm



Strategies for Inclusion: A Vision for Purdue

How can we address challenges to inclusion? What potential strategies could enable inclusion on campus?  What are the kinds of activities already occurring on campus that facilitate dialogues about inclusion?

Panelist: Dr. Jay Akridge, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Diversity



Topic 3

3/30 Fri

12:00-1:30 pm

West Faculty


Role of Religion in Inclusion

How can we enable understanding religious differences in ways that will facilitate inclusion?

Panel: Gulcin Con, Ashley Purpura, Renee Thomas, Carolyn Johnson



Topic 4

4/20 Fri

12:00-1:30 pm


Everyday Practices that can Foster Inclusion

The ‘Conversations about Inclusion’ series focused on specific topics since fall 2017. But inclusion is relevant within and across various realms. How can everyday practices create a truly sustainable, beneficial, and diverse culture?

Panel: Jean Beaman, Angela Goldenstein, Rhonda Phillips, Rachel Scarlett

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