Embracing diversity and inclusion is one of the four top goals in UTC’s Strategic Plan and, to achieve that objective, a new, all-day conference has been scheduled this month.

Moving Our Campus (MOC) Forward: An Inclusive Excellence Conference will be held in the University Center on Tuesday, Oct. 17. The conference’s theme is “Exploring Inclusion as a Path to Excellence.” It is free and open to everyone, including the public.

“MOC Forward will foster awareness and appreciation of diversity issues through exploration of exemplary practice, contemporary theory, groundbreaking research, thought leadership and strategy development,” says Bryan Samuel, director of Equity and Diversity for UTC and co-chair of the event.

The conference will offer sessions that focus on self-exploration, identity development, campus diversity, and inclusion in the wider community.

“MOC Forward will explore how interacting with people from diverse backgrounds and perspectives augments the curricular experience and affords every student the opportunity to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed in a global society,” he says.

More than 20 speakers, including UTC faculty, staff and students, will give presentations at the conference, addressing subjects that include ways to interact with students from other countries, dealing with different ethnicities, women’s issues and cultural differences. For a complete list of topics and speakers, go to utc.edu/moc-forward.

With the knowledge provided by the conference, “we might have a great education and employment environment that is welcoming and inclusive and inviting,” Samuel says.

MOCFoward Schedule

Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017

8-8:45 a.m.

Registration & Continental Breakfast; Tennessee Room

9-10:15 a.m.

Chancellor’s Opening Remarks

Keynote Address by Ron Harris

10:15-10:25 a.m.

MOC Forward Photo; First Floor Atrium

Sessions and Presenters

10:30-11:45 a.m.

  • A Discussion of Ta-Nehisi Coates’s “Between the World and Me”: Professor Earl Braggs, UTC English Department; Chattanooga Room B
  • (Full) Yours, Mine and Ours—Religion and Disbelief: Author/Journalist Deborah Levine; Ocoee Room
  • Women in Leadership: Dr. Chandra Alston, Associate Vice Chancellor of Human Resources at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center; Signal Mountain Room
  • Instructing Equity Through Dialogue: Dr. Brent Johnson, Assistant Professor of Education at Gordon State College; Fortwood Room
  • Crossing Cultures—Best Practices for Working with International Students: Takeo Suzuki, Executive Director of UTC Global Studies; Heritage Room
  • Talking About Race, Diversity and Inclusion in the Classroom: Dr. Elwood Watson, Professor at East Tennessee State University; Chattanooga Room A
  • The Have’s and the Have More’s: Socioeconomic Diversity: Kimberly Brooks, Assistant Director of UTC Financial Aid; Chattanooga Room C
  • Panel Discussion: Bridging Partnerships with the Chattanooga Community; Multicultural Center

11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m.

Networking Lunch and Cultural Entertainment; Tennessee Room

12:45-2:00 p.m.

  • Understanding and Teaching About Implicit Bias: Dr. Christopher Silver, Project Manager at UTC; Auditorium
  • (Full) The Science of Skin Color: How We Misinterpret the Meaning of Skin Color: Dr. Pamela Ashmore, Head and Professor in UTC Department of Anthropology; Chattanooga Room A
  • Leading Social Change in Student Organizations: Tyrone Smiley, Assistant Director of Housing and Residential Life at Jackson State University; Multicultural Center
  • Building a Culture of Access: Dr. Michelle Rigler, Director of the UTC Disability Resource Center; Ocoee Room
  • Managing the Intercultural Classroom: Dr. Mitsunori Misawa, Assistant Professor of the University of Tennessee; Heritage Room
  • Celebrating Diversity Through Co-Curricular Student Activities: UTC Dean of Students; Fortwood Room
  • What Does Inclusion Mean and What Does It Look Like: Dr. Michael Alston, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Equity Diversity & Student Rights, University of Tennessee Health Science Center; Signal Mountain Room
  • Enhancing Pathways to Graduate School for Students of Color: Dr. Ernest Brothers, Associate Dean of the Graduate School at the University of Tennessee; Chattanooga Room C

 2:00-2:15 p.m.


2:15-3:30 p.m.

  • Preparing Students for Cultural Differences Here and Abroad: Dr. Levar Smith, Assistant Professor at Morehouse College; Auditorium
  • Beyond the Binaries: Ryan Hall, Assoc. Director of UTC Housing and Residence Life; Fortwood Room
  • Intersectionality: Emily Quinn, Asst. Director of the UTC Disability Resource Center; Heritage Room
  • Advocacy Training: Tish Lyne and Daniel Auber, UTC Residence Life; Ocoee Room
  • The Importance of Diversity in the Curriculum: Dr. Linda Frost, Dean of the UTC Honors College; Multicultural Center
  • Islamophobia: Warda Kahlot, UTC Student; Chattanooga Room C
  • (Full) Glass Ceilings and Sticky Floors—Using Advocacy to Elevate the Status of Women in Tennessee: Emily O’Donnell, CEO of the Women’s Fund of Greater Chattanooga; Signal Mountain Room
  • Yours, Mine and Ours–Historical Perspectives and Cultural Symbols: Author/Journalist Deborah Levine; Chattanooga Room A

3:30-4 p.m.

Closing and Awards Ceremony

Media Relations Contacts: Email UTC Media Relations or call 423-425-5119.

Shawn Ryan is the executive staff writer in the Office of Communications and Marketing at UTC.

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