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2015 Friday Concurrent Sessions
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Friday Concurrent Sessions

4/10/2015, 10:30am - 11:20am

STEM Culture Change: Fostering Inclusive Excellence in Natural Resource Disciplines
Presenter(s): Dr. Thomas R. Easley

In this study twelve tenured faculty participants representing a variety of professional STEM backgrounds, personal identities, and academic positions participated. Each participant shared stories about their lived experiences as faculty members and how they engaged diversity in their everyday work activities. The framework, Huston’s "faculty vitality,” was integrated with Saldana’s verbal exchange coding to provide better analysis and interpretation of faculty experiences. Participants’ stories were analyzed and their engagement in diversity were in three dimensions: Intellectual exchange & collaboration; Decision making processes; & Mentoring relationships.

Career Planning and Development Training Curriculum: Action Research
Presenter(s): Patricia M. Hammock, M.Ed.

The didactic and clinical education of a diverse group of adult learners at a private health professions institution in the southeast United States prepares them to become medical doctors, dentists, researchers, academicians and/or leaders in health policy. The Career Planning and Development Training Curriculum enhances their studies by bridging the gap from their formal education to employment in their chosen field of study as learners may lack the soft skills and nuanced knowledge necessary to successfully maneuver the employment terrain of today's healthcare landscape.

Presenter(s): Muriel A. Hawkins, Ph.D., Dawit Haile, Ph.D

Three years ago, Virginia State University (VSU) developed a formal Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships (CEP) Program. Since then, the program has grown at an enviable rate and now enrolls nearly 1000 students, offers courses in 32 high schools in 20 partnering school districts.

The primary purpose of VSU’s CEP Program is to provide advanced scholastic educational enrichment opportunities for a limited number of eligible, high school students. Credits awarded for courses in the CEP Program may be used to satisfy subjects for high school graduation, or credit requirements, as defined by the partnering high schools. High school teachers are approved by respective VSU academic departments to teach VSU courses at their high schools, so that there is no interruption of students’ daily schedules. High school teachers work with VSU faculty liaisons to ensure that courses taught at the high schools mirror those taught at VSU. The same textbooks, syllabi, course resources, mid-term and final examinations and course evaluations are used at both institutions.

The Minority Assistantship Program (MAP): A Successful Graduate Intervention Program
Presenter(s): Dr. Kenyetta Martin

This session will discuss the impact an intervention program had on the retention and completion rate of African American (AA) graduate students at a predominantly white institution. The program was established to increase the number of AA graduate students enrolled in Kentucky higher education institutions. Analysis of MAP data showed that participants were graduated and retained at a significantly higher rate than Non-MAP AA students and Non-AA graduate students.

I'm so 'swaggerific:' Black Male Identity and Higher Educational Outcomes
Presenter(s): Jermaine Monk

Black male matriculation and persistence has steadily decreased for the last twenty years Academic success at the college level is predicated on a number of factors beyond intelligence i.e. financial aid, employment, educational history of parents or siblings and family relationships. The aforementioned studies have identified the stated variables as influencing achievement and persistence, but few studies investigates the impact of race and gender in relation to Black male collegiate persistence. Racial and gender identity is paramount to Black male existence in American society. Black Masculinity is performative. Continuing research in higher education should explore the intersectionality of race and gender, in general, and the masculinity performed (swag) in the current generation amongst Black collegians, in particular.

Diversifying Academic Leadership: Targeting Black Males as Presidents of PWIs
Presenter(s): DeWitt Scott

Since the beginning of American higher education, most colleges and universities have been led primarily by White men. From the governing boards down to the dean level, racial representation in higher education leadership has traditionally not been inclusive of people of color. This presentation explores research-based strategies for increasing the number of African American male presidents of predominantly White institutions (PWIs). If PWIs are as committed to diversity as they often claim, diversifying their leadership is the ideal realm to showcase this commitment.

Leveling the playing field: How increasing access to social capital can be used as a strategy for career preparation and academic support.
Presenter(s): Shannon Wilson, Alisha Davis

The session will focus on the perceived increase in social capital that is achieved via mentorship programs aimed at under-represented minority students at predominantly majority institutions. The presentation will demonstrate the potential link to increased academic achievement, career readiness, and overall engagement as demonstrated by preliminary data collected from a newly implemented program in Allendale (Grand Rapids), MI. The researchers will seek to demonstrate how this strategy can be used to decrease the gap in academic achievement and improve student efficacy between majority and under-represented minority students.

4/10/2015, 11:30am - 12:20pm

Denied Educational Opportunities: Overrepresentation of Black Males in Special Education
Presenter(s): Dr. Audrey Bowser, Dr. Kimberley Davis

Subjected to inequality in educational opportunity for more than four decades, African American students remain plagued with being misdiagnosed and misplaced in special education classes. Especially problematic for Black males, the problem of disproportionality has limited their academic preparation and caused long term detrimental effects on academic success. The purpose of this presentation is to discuss best practices that address proactive measures to ensuring that Black males are more appropriately placed into special education.

Toward a Career-Specific Developmental Model for African Americans in STEM
Presenter(s): LaVar J. Charleston, Jerlando F. L. Jackson

This study sought to ascertain key factors that contribute to African Americans’ STEM pursuits in computing sciences. The design of this study varied from previous research by examining the career trajectories of current computing scientists, rather than those who did not persist, or those in the beginning stages of the pipeline. As such, this study allowed the researchers to implicate a heuristic model that serves to help facilitate decision-making toward educational and occupational considerations in STEM fields in general, and the computing sciences in particular.

Social Rejection: The Hidden Manipulator
Presenter(s): Dr. Darcel Harris

Sebastiana, et al. (2011), suggests the brain's responses to social rejection influences one's behavior in real-world social interactions. These findings support that Social Rejection influences the education and careers of African/Black students. It is contented that Social Rejection has an impact on the success of African/Black students' education and career. This presentation promotes the importance of understanding Social Rejection, discusses the relevant research, and identifies strategies to address Social Rejection; especially, as it relates to educational readiness, retention, achievement, and career development of African/Black students.

Check it at the Door: Assessing "Attitudes" toward HIV/AIDS
Presenter(s): Tia Howard

This session will allow attendees to evaluate their perceptions on sexual health behaviors thus leading to discussion on ways to avoid imposing beliefs on students and eliminating stigma. .Furthermore, this workshop will also provide participants with a safe space to practice facilitating these conversations about sexual health and an overview of referral processes linking students to campus and local resources. The presence of this dialogue will encourage students to share other issues with professionals therefore remaining connected to resources and the institution.

GPSing the "Stuff": Navigating mis-understandings and mis-communications of Organizational Behaviors
Presenter(s): Dr. Kim D. Kirkland

People complain about almost anything and everything. "Stuff" can occur because of an unintentional cultural mis-step or a failure to communicate which may also be grounded in culture. This session benefits leaders in higher education that manage conflict at any level to identify when "Stuff" is disguised as illegal harassment/discrimination. The session provides insights and strategies to address the "Stuff". The "Stuff" we're talking about is "Something That U Find Frustrating" - it gets on people's nerves, makes people angry, stuff people don't like.

Preparing Leaders for the Next Phase of Academic Leadership: LMI 2015
Presenter(s): Jamila Maxie, Shantay Bolton, Robert Keith Collins, Lamar McWaine

Alumni of the Leadership and Mentoring Institute (LMI) will share their insights and experiences. Panelists, representing the faculty and administrative tracks, will discuss the professional and personal value of the LMI. This session is a must for anyone interested in "preparing for the next phase of academic leadership”.

Samuel DeWitt Proctor: The Educator, The Mentor, The Ombudsman
Presenter(s): Atiya Strothers, Atiya Strothers

This session will analyze the theme of mentoring, leadership, and HBCUs through the lens of Dr. Samuel DeWitt Proctor. This historic theologian and educator has influenced many towards higher education and they continue to carry on his legacy. The research will investigate its impact on the diversification of the doctoral pipeline and applied to the discussion of creating and navigating pathways to success.

4/10/2015, 2:00pm - 2:50pm

Increasing the Presence of URMs in STEM through Mentoring-Based Recruitment
Presenter(s): Brittini R. Brown, Levon T. Esters, Neil A. Knobloch

One approach being used to address the lack of women and URMs pursuing STEM graduate degree programs is the use of effective mentoring. Mentoring is defined as an interaction between a more experienced individual who sets out to assist or guide a less experienced individual. Instrumental and psychosocial support have been cited as two key principles of effective mentoring. The purpose of this proposal is to describe the development of a mentoring-based graduate school recruitment program targeted at 1890 Historically Black Land-Grant University students.

Attaining Educational Leaders of Color in Online Graduate Programs
Presenter(s): Dr. Kimberley Davis, Dr.Audrey Bowser, Kimberley Johnson,

Research indicates that higher education institutions are expanding their online course offerings, particularly at the graduate level. Given that the graduate students are at a distance, geographically and temporally, and that knowledge and relationships are being constructed through technology, it is important to know what impact this mode of delivery has or had on the proportional representation of students of color. The purpose of this research is to determine whether online learning enhances minority participation in education leadership graduate programs toward degree attainment.

Methods of Engagement: African American Students and Christian Campus Ministries
Presenter(s): Courtney A. Gay, Candace E. Maddox, PhD

African American students attending predominately White institutions (PWIs) often utilize their faith as a means of coping with the challenges of being a minority in their campus communities (Donahoo & Caffey, 2010; Herndon, 2003; Patton & McClure, 2009; Stewart, 2010). However, more research is needed on the engagement of African American students in campus ministry programs. A University of Georgia research team will discuss preliminary findings of a research study exploring this topic and engage participants in dialogue about the spiritual development of students and future research directions.

Help-seeking behaviors in African-American and Hispanic STEAM Students
Presenter(s): Dr. Denise Hayes, Tiffani J. Smith

Help-seeking behavior is positively linked to persistence and retention of African-American and Hispanic S(science) T(technology) E(engineering) A(liberal arts) M(mathematics) (STEAM) students. This presentation describes a program which assesses African American and Hispanic students’ awareness and utilization of academic and wellness services at five private colleges. Initial results suggest that students are motivated to use academic services but reluctant to use mental health services. Recommendations will be made to decrease barriers and stigma associated with use of mental health services on campus.

Advancing Undergraduates Through African and African American Studies Programs
Presenter(s): Mary Margaret Hui

The underrepresentation of students of color in higher education institutions contributes to the subsequent underrepresentation of graduates of color, graduate student of color, and employees of color. The presentation exhibits a conceptual model that addresses underrepresented students issues using best practices and evidence-informed approach that advance student success. The model implementation is credited with improved retention, graduation, and graduates employment and/or enrollment in graduate/professional degree programs. The presentation will examine effective strategies that allow students to succeed and thrive, instructor experiences, and best practices.

Sowing Seeds for Success: Guided Discussion as Formative Assessment in K-3 Guided Reading
Presenter(s): Michelle Macchia

Standardized assessment data suggest that African American and Latino students tend to underperform in literacy, especially in traditional public schools with high concentrations of students in poverty. Underperformance in literacy impacts students’ chances of getting admitted to college and their ability to perform well academically once admitted to college. Strong foundations in literacy during the primary grades help mitigate this problem. During this presentation, I will share preliminary findings from my dissertation research on K-3 guided reading practices and open a discussion of how to use early literacy instruction to unblock pathways to success in higher education.

Black Students' Experiences at a Hispanic Serving Institution
Presenter(s): Henrietta Williams Pichon

This presentation will focus on Black students' experiences at a Hispanic Serving Institution. Special attention will be given to how these students develop a sense of belonging and/or community.

4/10/2015, 3:00pm - 3:50pm

A Pathway to Catapult a Career: Utilizing E-portfolios
Presenter(s): Margo R. Foreman, MPH

Presenting one’s professional credentials and achievements utilizing traditional resumes and CVs is becoming passe` for Millennials, Gen-X, and Gen-Ys. LinkedIn is one of the fastest growing social-networking platforms in the country. Nonetheless, Higher-Ed professionals, especially under-represented minorities cannot afford to allow some app developer decide how to best articulate their unique achievements. This presentation will highlight the benefits of telling one’s story and showcasing one's professional brand through E-portfolio creation. This presentation would especially benefit newly minted, individuals changing careers, or launching an entrepreneurial endeavor.

Using the Blues to Enhance First Year College Student Retention
Presenter(s): Sandra Jean Foster, Dr. Margaret Counts-Spriggs, Dr. John Young,

This workshop uses the Blues Problem-Solving Method of moaning, mourning, morning to explore first year college student readiness. Through music and narration, the workshop traces the Blues from its African Roots to its American Fruits and provides reasons for why some African Americans have difficulty transitioning from high school to college. Participants will use the Blues Problem-Solving Method to explore these reasons and develop strategies for helping youth accept the challenge of moving beyond the reasons and staying in college.

Insights on Academic Success from High-Achieving African-American Millennials
Presenter(s): LaShandra Little, Brandi Jones, Beth Pann

The National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) is an international honor society recognizing outstanding academic excellence of high school and college scholars. In its seventh annual Career Survey conducted in 2014, NSHSS charts the preferences and attitudes of high-achieving millennials in the areas of career choices, employers, workplace environment, communications and educational goals. Over 12,000 diverse scholars, ages 15 to 27, participated, 21% of whom are African American. This session presents the preferences and perspectives of these African American scholars as they share their views on college preparation, academic achievement, career readiness, and professional development.

Gateways to Success in STEM fields
Presenter(s): Jayne S. Reuben, PhD, Kendall Deas, PhD, Ernie Lacy, DDS, Titus Reaves, PhD

Initiatives to address the lack of diversity in STEM fields abound at various academic institutions. However, these programs have been only been moderately successful in increasing the number of Blacks and other underrepresented groups that may become eligible for advancement to higher level administrative positions. In this symposium, the speakers will present the findings and recommendations of seminal diversity reports as well as discuss best practices and proposed programs that engage the target communities on a variety of levels- socioeconomic, educational, developmental and professional.

Innovative-Thinkers Camp Revisited A Model for Academic Preparation & Success
Presenter(s): Jacquelyn Rucker, Iris Outlaw

Innovative-Thinkers Camp Revisited: A Model for Academic Preparation & Success. Revisit the Innovative-Thinkers Camp pilot program after completion of the first three years. Program expansion provided an opportunity to replicate the program and scale it. Maintaining the programs integrity was critical as developers evaluated what did and did not work.

  • Join us as we discuss:
  • The impact of the program
  • The importance of providing supplemental educational parental programs
  • Parental buy-in
  • Mentors
  • On-campus versus off-campus facilities
  • Strategic partners
  • Sustaining student success beyond the camp 


Heighten the Academic Success of Black Students by Implementing Culturally Responsive Teaching and Universal Design for Learning
Presenter(s): Shonta Smith

In order to meet the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse students teachers must think outside the box. The one size fits all approach does not work. Building a learning environment that encompasses the frameworks of culturally responsive teaching and universal design for learning creates a climate that is conducive to the teaching and learning process. The implementation of these frameworks heightens the academic success of Black students.

Keep Writing, Keeping Expanding, Keep Collaborating: Scholarship and the Early Childhood Professor
Presenter(s): Reginald Harrison Williams

Even though African American men constitute 3% of the teaching workforce in early childhood education within classrooms across the nation, the percentage is even less within the higher education culture at two and four year institutions. This presentation details the struggles that African American male early childhood professors face in establishing scholarly reputations within the field, dealing with pressures of advising predominant female student populations. It presents one professor’s successes in navigating these obstacles.

4/10/2015, 4:00pm - 4:50pm

Tough to Trailblaze: The challenges and opportunities of "Firsts"
Presenter(s): Nijinsky Dix, Ethan Zagore

First-generation, African-American students in urban, underachieving, neighborhoods and high schools have a difficult path to college graduation. Statistically, racial disparities and minimal improvements in the composite ACT score average highlight a bleak picture for aspiring, first-generation college students. The percentage of first-generation students' attaining bachelor's degrees has traditionally paled in comparison to other ethnicities. The presenters will articulate how collegiate institutions can implement best practices related to college acclimation and social integration, with a goal of increased retention and overall matriculation of first-generation students.

Persisting Academically and Culturally Together: Enhancing African American Males’ Self-Efficacy, Leadership, and Academic Performance
Presenter(s): Thomas Easley, Marshall Anthony, Jr., Jamael Harrison

This session should particularly benefit all those who are interested in the persistence of African American Male students at Predominately White Institutions (PWIs). The goal of Pack’s P.A.C.T. is to increase African American Male self-efficacy as scholars inside and outside the classroom with improved: retention/graduation rates, GPAs, and the number of academic honors. This goal is reached through the following: academic coaching, professional mentoring and development, enhancing cultural competence pertaining to the history and future of the targeted population, increased participation in formal leadership/cultural opportunities, and an increased sense of community among members. Participants’ involvement in Pack’s PACT has led to students securing internships, getting study abroad experiences, and graduating with honors. This year-long program is structured so that students attend a mandatory retreat, meet bi-weekly, and participate in a cultural excursion together. The participants also mentor high school students and help them prepare for college. Alongside the mandated structure, we have seen graduates of the program come back to serve as mentors for the program. Lastly, the current participants serve in vast ­­­leadership roles which provide an "accountability mindset,” and increase participants’ academic and cultural development among themselves and their peers

Race and Gender Identity: A Pathway to Move Beyond the Binary
Presenter(s): Margo R. Foreman, MPH, CAAP

Navigating emerging social-densities has never been simplistic. Today institutions wrestle with deeper issues of intersectionality. The intersection between race and gender becomes more complex when considering dynamics of gender expression. Administrators should know how to respond when transgender individuals receive push-back for using gender-specific facilities; and which policies guide student’s request for gender change. Participants will engage in dialogue about best practices for preparing academic environments to support transgender students, faculty and staff, emerging trends, and concerns that address issues while insuring equity and dignity.

International Black Feminist Thought: An Analysis of Intercultural Competency Development
Presenter(s): Maraina Montgomery , Juhanna Rogers

Post September 11, 200, in a social climate of global economic interdependency, two African-American women met while studying abroad in Alicante, Spain. Ten years later, the women reconnect to discuss how living abroad, finding their space in higher education, and establishing careers has affected their views on studying outside of the United States. The researchers create a duo-ethnography about their international experiences. Using Black Feminist Thought (Collins, 1986, 1989), the two discuss and analyze notions intercultural competency and their international experiences.

The PhD Pipeline Opportunity Program Undergraduate Summer Institute Impact
Presenter(s): Lucy J Reuben, Betty Overton-Adkins

The PhD Pipeline Opportunity Program engages diverse colleges and universities to identify and mentor under-represented minority students to prepare for and pursue faculty careers in business and related management disciplines. This initiative includes early identification of potential talent (undergraduates); information about critical curriculum preparation; and access to year-round academic mentorship. Results from a rigorous 4-year evaluation process show that the PhD Pipeline Opportunity Program is successful in increasing awareness, preparation and networking strategies for undergraduate students to pursue doctoral studies and faculty careers.

The Power of Emotional Intelligence in the Work Environment
Presenter(s): Leon Rouson, PhD, Aretha Marbley, PhD

When it comes to happiness and success in life, emotional intelligence (EQ) matters just as much as intellectual ability (IQ). Emotional intelligence helps one build stronger relationships, succeed at work, and achieve their career and personal goals. Learn more about why emotional intelligence is so important and how one can boost their own EQ by mastering a few key skills. The three skills that will be discussed are: Self-Concept, Self-Control and Motivation.

Black Women, White Campus: The college experience unveiled
Presenter(s): Khalilah A. Shabazz, Ph.D.

Black women enrolled in college far outnumber those of Black men resulting in decreased attention to their experiences. The breadth of literature on Black men has covered programs, institutional support, and calls to action to address their needs. What about the needs of Black women in college? What are their challenges? How are they supported? This session will explore the experiences of Black women in college, the perception of institutional support and strategies to support the personal development and retention of Black women in college.

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