I created this guide as my final project for the RISE Institute (Reframing Inclusion through Scholarship and Equity).
I became an advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) to help others who have been affected by the challenges of discrimination. As an African American female, I have felt at times that I have done all that I can to achieve goals yet fell short due to circumstances outside of my control. When I was younger, I didn't understand why I was being treated unfairly; I assumed that all people are equal. As RISE Fellow at LCC, I know that equity is a way of making up for the injustices of the past.
When I was a college student, I met a Latinx who is a long-time friend. Also, I studied overseas in the Dominican Republic. It was an amazing experience--the culture, the music, the dance! I was so enlightened that I switched my major to Spanish and became a secondary teacher. I feel that diversity (ethnic, cultural, etc.) benefits individuals on a personal and a professional level. I am a better person because of the wonderful people with whom I associate.
At work, I am the only support classification person in my department. I admit that I have felt that I was not "invited to the table" regarding issues that relate to my job function and accomplishing my day-to-day work. Inclusion acknowledges that a person is valued. I am here!
I am making a positive difference in the lives of others because it is the right thing to do. Thank you, RISE Institute, for preparing me to be the best advocate (person) I can be.
~ Jennifer, She/Her/Hers