Page 15 - Transformations The Diversity Academy Magazine for IU Southeast Faculty

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Farah and several observers found
that in the two weeks of rehearsal, the
choir’s delivery had been transformed.
Kelly Ryan’s experience with
curricular change in H105 involved
both frustration and elation. She felt
that the Indian Removal unit failed
to raise awareness of diversity in her
FYS students until she discovered
that she had forgotten a vital step.
The model proposes that passion and
insight emerges when students can
connect emotionally to perspectives
that differ from their own. They need
to consider what they know and feel
about the issue themselves and about
the stakes that affect all concerned.
By then presenting them with new
information about others’ points of
view, students are positioned to realize
their own short-comings, which opens
them to alternatives.
To Ryan’s delight, students responded
with compassion and insight in
studying slavery right after Indian
Removal. She found that the first
study had given them a foundation
for the second: “I had students engage
in this model three times in this
course. I felt that every single time
we did this, they grew a little bit, and
they actually said that. One of the
students actually said to me last time,
‘I need to start thinking about this
with everything!’” In comparing the
questions Ryan had used for student
responses in the two units, those for
the latter had included the missing
step: “So like my students, perhaps
I’m getting better at this!”
In giving final feedback on their
FLC experiences, participants noted
enjoyment of their community: they
could share their trials and successes
as they searched and experimented.
They especially noted the power they
felt in coming together from different
specialties to apply what they had
learned together.
To these professional educators,
it seems that few things are more
meaningful in creating a sense of
community than contributing their
resources, time, and energy to join
with like-minded others in a common
cause and to leave one another
transformed for having been there.
Hunt studies his plan for Biology L318, Evolution