October 18, 2021

Conversation on creating an antiracist system is Wednesday

A Conversations of Understanding discussion this week will look at transformative action steps that the Southern Illinois University campuses can take to become a more inclusive, just and vibrant academic community. Faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members are invited to join the live virtual discussion at noon Wednesday, Oct. 20. 

The discussion will also seek to identify and examine ideas, systems, policies and practices that advance antiracism and equity with the aim to build a better SIU for everyone. 

“When we started this journey, our commitment was to create an ongoing dialogue that reflected our lasting commitment to not only promote diversity, equity and inclusion, but to lead us toward becoming an antiracist university system,” SIU System President Dan Mahony said. “As we begin year two of our Conversations of Understanding, we’re using our first event to address the steps we will be taking together to realize our goals. We’re also changing the time and length to better accommodate our faculty, staff and students, who can use their lunch break to participate in the bulk of the conversation.” 

The meeting will be available on the SIU System’s YouTube channel

The event will feature an SIU community panel sharing its members’ experiences and stories, followed by a Q&A session through the YouTube comment section. Questions may be submitted before the event by email to pkeith@siu.edu

Participants will include: 

  • Dan Mahony, SIU System president, who will share closing comments.
  • Sheila Caldwell, SIU System vice president for antiracism, diversity, equity and inclusion, and chief diversity officer.
  • Rose Moroz, SIU Carbondale, assistant dean for the Graduate School.
  • Jacideah Nunnery, SIU Edwardsville, a junior majoring in psychology and a minor in Black studies.
  • Jeremy (J.T.) Snipes, SIU Edwardsville, assistant professor, Department of Educational Leadership.
  • Cristina Castillo, SIU Carbondale, Hispanic/Latino Resource Center coordinator, who will serve as moderator.  

This is the first session for the 2021-22 academic year and 10th overall in a series of virtual exchanges where students, alumni, faculty, staff and community members can share their experiences and thoughts on a variety of themes related to diversity, inclusion and equity.  

The SIU System President’s Office and the SIU System Diversity Advisory Council are discussion sponsors.