Higher ed institutions in Fond du Lac County host joint diversity workshop for students and community on Oct. 6 at Ripon College

by speitz22. September 2010 06:53

In the second collaboration of its kind, the four institutions of higher education in Fond du Lac County will jointly sponsor Diversity Matters Now!, a free interactive workshop featuring international peace workers Arthur Romano and Cherine Badawi, 1-4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 6 at Ripon College in Great Hall of Harwood Memorial Union.

Students from Marian University, Moraine Park Technical College, Ripon College, University of Wisconsin-Fond du Lac and members of the community are invited to participate. There is no fee for the workshop, but registration is required online at http://cw.marianuniversity.edu/diversity.

Badawi and Romano have been working internationally as peace educators for more than ten years. They have helped implement innovative diversity and intercultural educational programs in Europe, South America and Asia and aboard The Scholar Ship, a transnational university with students and staff from more than fifty nations. Both facilitators have both been awarded the Rotary World Peace Fellowship for postgraduate study abroad.

The Diversity Matters Now! event will combine lecturettes with activities that promote the exploration of diversity through introspection, personal story sharing and community building. The goal is for participants to leave the workshop with deeper empathy, a new lens on diversity and an increased capacity to build connections and community across lines of difference.

The workshop will be of interest to community members as well as college students. Given recent studies that suggest that Fond du Lac County will experience significant labor shortages after Baby Boomers retire, this workshop should be not only personally enriching and educational, but also helpful in developing skills for attracting and retaining workers now and in the future.

Educators can earn .35 continuing education credits for participation in the workshop.  Participants can register to ride a bus from Marian University, MPTC or UW-Fond du Lac, or can provide their own transportation. Parking at Ripon College will be available in the lot on the corner of Woodside Avenue and Seward Street.

The workshop is being planned by the Higher Education Diversity Initiative Team (HEDIT) which was created by the presidents and CEOs of the four institutions. The team was charged to plan “an annual collaborative project designed to promote a climate of appreciation for all aspects of human diversity, supporting, fostering and welcoming inclusiveness, respect and dignity for all.”

HEDIT’s mission is to lead, inspire, educate and challenge their institutions and the Fond du Lac County community in promoting diversity and inclusiveness. HEDIT also sponsored the Student Leadership Summit held in October 2009 at UW-Fond du Lac which was drew 275 attendees.

For more information contact Marcus Neeld, program coordinator for Multicultural and International Student Affairs at Ripon College, (920) 748-8300.