Diversity Committee Meeting – Thursday, September 28, 2006
Present at Meeting: Kawanna B., Sandy A., Cheryl D., Jeff F., LaVerne G., Sara G., Thura M., Andy M., Mark P., Laura P., Becky R., Rita S., Tom S., and Gail W.
a. Disability Awareness Month (check Share for events): Kawanna announced that Donna Braquet will be re-joining the Committee as the new Disability Services Liaison. Donna wanted to let the Committee know that October is Disability Awareness Month and that she would be posting activities to Share News that others might be interested in.
b. Brief announcement from Mark: Residents as a cohort will be duplicating a survey done at the University of Washington: they will be looking at students from underrepresented groups and their affiliations with multicultural offices or programs, their library use, and their needs. Will be enlisting the help of everyone and if you have contact with students from these groups encourage them to take the survey as well. They will also be surveying faculty and staff as well. Rita asked how the students would be found. Mark answered that they have contacts with the different groups on campus and it is a web survey. Will be using the statistical consulting group on campus to work with the data.
2. Official welcome of new members: New members introduced themselves, which department they currently work in and why they wanted to join and work with the Diversity Committee.
3. ALA Grant Opportunity – Jewish Literature (Laura Purcell): Laura received information from Barbara concerning a grant opportunity from ALA called “Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature, Identity and Imagination”. Information on the program is available from ALA at: http://www.ala.org/ala/ppo/currentprograms/letstalkaboutit/letstalkaboutit.htm. The program offers $2500 for institutions interested in presenting a scholarly reading program on Jewish Culture. There are 6 themes with 5 books, and their must be a selected scholar to lead the discussion (vitae included in application material), and a project director who must go through training. Does require forethought and planning. Deadline is December 1st for the proposal submission. Kawanna, Thura, and Mark will attempt to locate people who might work with us. This does not have to be a Libraries only project and it will be necessary to collaborate with other departments on campus and possibly groups in the community. Some departments to consider include: English, History, Religious Studies, and Cultural Anthropology.
4. Trunk or Treat (Kawanna): Sponsored by Disability Services. Kawanna submitted the form to register for the event. Since there has been no response she called the office of Disability Services and also resubmitted the form. Kawanna has volunteered the use of her trunk for the event. She will also coordinate volunteers. Volunteers will be needed for decorating, candy provision, and staffing during the event. The event is planned for Monday, October 30th from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm in Circle Park. Full information is available online at: http://www.utk.edu/ableandaware/trunkortreat/. Kawanna will put out a call for volunteers as plans are finalized.
5. Display Case on the 1st floor (Dates for the Committee?): If we do the Jewish Literature Project we should advertise and the case would be a good idea. At some point we should consider advertising the Culture Corner there, especially if we consider using Appalachia as an upcoming theme to go along with the Ready for the World year-long celebration.
6. Diversity Survey: Kawanna presented the Committee with questions posed by Tiffani concerning the survey. Tiffani wanted assurance that the results from the survey would actually be used by the Committee and the Libraries to address any issues that might come out of the survey. As many on the current Committee were not there at the original running of the survey, it was asked what the original purpose was. Thura filled everyone in on the fact that the climate assessment was a necessity at the time, as the Libraries had not had one and needed to see where they stool. It was also a means of helping to determine what the Committee would do, as it was a new entity in the Libraries and needed direction. Reports were done based on the results of the survey, information was shared with the Dean and LMG. Attempts were made to address the things that were addressable, including setting up events and activities related to the findings in the survey.
It was decided that what ever the committee’s role it needed to be delineated. It was asked if Tiffani wanted the Committee to serve as endorsers only or if she wanted us to take a more active role. It was also a general feeling of the Committee that it could not truly be called a Diversity Committee Project since it is her project and she will be getting research opportunities out of it. But the Committee would be able to use the results of the survey for their own purposes. The Committee also wanted to know if there were roles we could take, what would they be and what would be the time commitments involved. The committee also asked if another category could be added in the area of race/ethnicity to capture those not included in the general US federal government categories. Kawanna agreed that she would contact Tiffani to determine the answers to the committee’s questions and she would also contact Barbara to make sure that she is aware of the issues involved.
7. Goals Discussion: The Committee discussed the goals in the context of the goals from last year. Suggestions for rewording, combining, and additional goals were made. Current goals for the year will be finalized at the next meeting or via e-mail.
Final announcements included a reminder to submit both TLA and ACRL proposals for programs and poster-sessions as soon as possible. Deadlines are upcoming for both including two in October. The Committee should consider whether there are topics that we would like to present at either Conference. The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, October 19th at 1:00 pm. Location will be determined.
Meeting was adjourned
Respectfully submitted by Kawanna Bright – 9/28/06