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Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Conference

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Education Conference header hosted by the Idaho State University College of Education

Conference Theme:

 United in Action: Taking Steps to Creating Inclusive Learning Spaces

Conference Date: Friday, November 3, 2023

Time: 2:00-7:00 pm (Mountain Time)

Location: Rendezvous Suites

Co-hosted by the  and the ISU Diversity Resource Center

Schedule of Events

Lunch and Opening Remarks

12:30 - 1:30 p.m


1:30 - 1:45 p.m.

Poster Session and Opening Remarks

2:00 - 2:55 p.m.

*Refreshments will be served

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Workshop

3:00 - 4:45 p.m.

Workshop theme: "Harnessing Our Collective Resilience: The Science of Biological and Behavioral Resilience through Plasticity, Sociality, and Meaning"

Presented by: Dr. Mays Imad

Dr. Mays Imad is an Associate Professor in the Biology Department at Connecticut College. She is a Gardner Institute Fellow for Undergraduate Education, an AAC&U Senior Fellow within the Office of Undergraduate STEM Education, and a Mind and Life Institute Fellow. Dr. Imad's research focuses on understanding the social determinants of students' wellbeing and success. Specifically, looking at stress, self-awareness, biofeedback, and self-regulation, and how these impact student learning and success. A nationally-recognized expert on trauma-informed teaching and learning, she passionately advocates for institutions to make mental health a top priority and to systematically support the education of the whole student. 

Keynote Presentation

5:00 - 7:00 p.m.


Presented by: Liz Kleinrock

Liz Kleinrock (she/her) is an award winning educator and best selling author, as well as a Korean-American transracial adoptee, queer, Jewish woman. In 2018, Liz received the Teaching Tolerance Award for Excellence in Teaching, and in 2019 delivered her TED Talk, “How to teach kids to talk about taboo topics." In the spring of 2021, Liz released her first book, Start Here, Start Now with Heinemann Publishing, and is excited to announce the publication of four upcoming children's books with HarperCollins. She currently works as Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging at a pre-k through middle school, and resides in Washington DC with her partner, cat, and two bunnies.

Given the changing demographics in the United States and events that continue to  draw national attention to inequities in American society, it is critical for educators to be well-positioned to integrate actionable ideas and strategies that promote diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in their classrooms. Specifically, Colleges of Education must equip and empower future teachers to create learning environments and school communities that are safe, caring, and inclusive communities so that all students can learn and thrive.

The goal of this year’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Education Conference, which is being co-sponsored by the College of Education and ISU’s Diversity Resource Center, is to provide an opportunity for teachers at all levels to come together and share strategies to advance DEI efforts in K-12 schools and at the university level. In particular, this conference is an opportunity to discuss barriers to creating equity and empowering teachers to meet the needs of diverse students. Schools across Idaho and the United States have reported struggling with how best to respond to the increasing emotional needs of students as well as ensuring equitable access to instructional materials and resources. The issue is particularly challenging in our rural schools who struggle to hire and retain teachers. This conference is geared toward engaging educators in dialogue regarding various evidence-based strategies to address equity and inclusion in schools, including supporting the mental health and well being of students.

“The faculty, staff, and students in the College of Education are committed to fostering a welcoming, inclusive, and safe environment. We are dedicated to preparing future teachers and school leaders who will promote equity and justice in their classrooms, schools, and greater community. This conference is an opportunity for all of us to explore critical issues surrounding diversity, equity, and inclusion, to learn from one another, and to renew our commitment to being positive change agents in our community,” said the College of Education Dean Jean McGivney-Burelle.

The DEI Conference is organized by the Idaho State University College of Education and ISU Diversity Resource Center and is geared toward engaging educators in dialogue regarding various evidence-based strategies to address equity and inclusion in schools, including rural settings. For more information, please email Dr. Celal Perihan at celalperihan@isu.edu or Dr. Berenice Sanchez at berenicesanchez@isu.edu

The participants will be able to:

    1. integrate equity and inclusion strategies to promote student learning in rural P-12 learning environments. 
    2. appreciate diversity on the ISU campus, Pocatello community, and larger society. 
    3. promote an inclusive and welcoming environment for all community members. 
    4. provide a platform for ISU teacher candidates to share their concerns, challenges, and strategies about equity and inclusion in the classroom.
    5. promote instructional strategies and services to meet individual, cultural, or environmental differences.