Month: May 2017


Diversity Program of the Month

School: Southern Oregon University Region: PACURH
Person in charge: Luke Yeates Nominator: Luke Yeates

Target Population: 30 Time Needed to Organize: 40hours
Number of People in Attendance: 20 Date(s) of Program: 5/9/2017-5/11/2017
Number of People Needed to Organize: 1 Cost of Program: $40
On-Campus Population: 1100 Chapter Size: 20

Origin of Program:

The idea of #PictureThis originates from a programming session attended by NRHH delegate, Luke Yeates, at the 2016 PACURH Annual Leadership Conference at USC. The program has been adapted to fit the building and campus climate in which it took place.

Word Count: 41

Please give a short description of the program:

#PictureThis was a two-part, multi-day event that took place on the 3rd floor lobby of Shasta Hall at Southern Oregon University.

The first part of the program was a passive conversation where residents used sticky notes to respond to images posted around the lobby. Each image was open source or used with permission and was carefully selected to represent a current event, controversial issue, or oppressed identity(s). Additionally, all the images had a question attached to them that acted as a conversation starter. The 27 selected images covered topics ranging from police brutality to cultural appropriation, the power of protest to queer women of color, male and female beauty standards to the use of gendered titles for certain professions (waiter/waitress).

In order to promote a safe and engaging learning environment, an email was sent to residents and a poster was hung in the space of the event that described the program, gave guidelines and ground rules for discussion, and offered resources if any participants felt triggered by the images. Additionally, each hung image was attached with "#PictureThis" so that residents would understand that it was part of a program and placed there deliberately.

After the images had been hung for several days and residents had a chance to look at them and respond, the second part of the program took place. This was a live discussion about the images facilitated by the coordinators of the Queer Resource Center and the Multicultural Resource Center as well as the Associate Director of Student Life. All of the images were put in a digital format so that they could be displayed on a TV while they were discussed. This was a "resident-led" discussion; meaning, residents who attended brought to attention photos and comments that they were interested in or affected by. The facilitators really helped us break down the images, the messages behind them, and why they were progressive or problematic. Through this discussion, residents were exposed to new ways of thinking and new perspectives on current issues or the struggles of others.

Word Count: 340

Goals of the program:

The two parts of #PictureThis had differing goals. Part I of the program aimed to expose residents to many issues and perspectives. Residents were encouraged to take their time viewing and responding to images. The passive nature of this part of the program allowed residents to express their thoughts and feelings through an uncommon medium (sticky notes). Additionally, those who are shyer and typically would not participate in group discussion had the opportunity to anonymously engage free of the pressures of a group setting.

Part II of the program aimed to expose residents to the above issues at a deeper level. The discussion facilitators aided in diving very deep into the images and looking at them from multiple angles and viewpoints. Residents were presented with topics that challenged them and gave them the power to learn.

Word Count: 136

Positive and lasting effects of the program:

Residents who attended the discussion section of the program reported that they had a better understanding of identity and intersectionality based issues. Additionally, residents were empowered to use inclusive language and intervene as a bystander if they see injustice taking place.

Word Count: 42

Short evaluation of the program:

#PictureThis attempted to gather and display images regarding a wide variety of topics and issues. While the images were certainly diverse, there is always the opportunity to gather more and incorporate more discussion points into the program.

The program was very visible with residents and throughout the building. This created a "buzz" with residents and got them having conversations with their friends about what they saw.

An improvement to the program could be to lengthen the time that the images are hung. If they are hung for longer, residents will have more opportunity to participate as they can fit it in their schedule.

Word Count: 103

How could this program be adapted to other campuses?

In adapting this program to other campuses, it is important to keep in mind individual campus climate and the resources available to students. The goal of the program should continue to be to expose residents to new perspectives and inclusive language techniques but they way that is achieved may look different. The images used in #PictureThis were hung in the lobby space "gallery style" and the lobby looked somewhat like an art museum.

Depending on the space available, the images could be displayed in different ways. For example, they could be dispersed throughout the building or delivered to individual residents at their doors.

Word Count: 103

Date of entry into database: 2017-05-16 18:45:51

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