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Ongoing Initiatives

BOOKS FOR FACULTY/STAFF: The CHaSS Anti-Oppression committee is offering free copies of Ijeoma Oluo’s New York Times bestseller So You Want to Talk About Race. Whether you are well versed in issues of race and racism or are looking to take a first step in learning more, this book has a lot to offer. Taking an intersectional approach to race issues, Oluo explains the importance of having (difficult) conversations about race and offers strategies for having such conversations more effectively. Oluo’s book covers an array of topics including: 

  • Concerns about “getting it right” in discussions about race 
  • Microaggressions 
  • Race and law enforcement 
  • Race in education 
  • Privilege 
  • Cultural appropriation 
  • What to do if someone calls you racist 
  • Action steps 

So You Want to Talk About Race is written to help facilitate meaningful dialogue and action towards the goal of fighting racial oppression on personal, professional, and societal levels. The Anti-Oppression Committee is encouraging staff and faculty to create departmental mini book clubs and action groups that utilize Oluo’s discussion guide and suggestions to effect positive change at all levels of departmental functioning, and especially in the everyday experience of students from marginalized identity groups in our classrooms. Sign up to receive your free copy here 

TEACHING TOOLKITS: In Fall 2020, the Anti-Oppression Committee launched a “Teaching Toolkit” project to serve as a resource for our campus community to promote positive change, shed light on difficult-to-understand topics, and curate expertise from our  colleagues. The Toolkits provide a range of materials that address systemic oppression/liberation, including scholarly articles, learning resources, and 5-7 minute lecturette videos by USU faculty. Faculty may draw on these resources to use in their teaching and expand their knowledge for addressing systemic oppression/liberation in their classrooms.

   - To access the Teaching Toolkit, click here: Teaching Toolkit Resources

   - Faculty interested in submitting materials for the Teaching Toolkits should consult the following: Teaching Toolkit CFP  

STAFF BOOK CLUB: The CHaSS Staff Book Club is sponsored by the Anti-Oppression Committee as part of its ongoing mission to create a just campus community. The Staff Book Club meets several times a semester to discuss a book that addresses topics related to equity and inclusion. The book club is open to all staff, offering an invitation for a meaningful yet challenging conversations around experiences of structural and systematic oppressions. The book club is a space for those who already engage in these difficult topics, as well as those to seek to learn, listen, and wrestle with ideas that challenges our beliefs and assumptions. To support staff and remove barriers for participation, the Anti-Oppression Committee provides the books at no cost to participants.

If you are a staff member in CHaSS, or at the university, and would like to participate in the book club please contact Jeannie Sur at jeannie.sur@usu.edu

Upcoming selections
February 2021: The Beginning and End of Rape: Confronting Sexual Violence in Native America by Sarah Deer
March 2021: The Round House by Louise Erdrich

Previous book club selections:
How to be Less Stupid About Race by Crystal M. Fleming
One Person, No Vote by Carol Anderson

GENERAL EDUCATION DIVERSITY REQUIREMENT: In March 2020, the Anti-Oppression Committee wrote and submitted a proposal to the Diversity and Inclusion Taskforce outlining a plan to institute a new requirement to the General Education curriculum that would make diversity and inclusion one of its core components. The proposal is currently being reviewed by the “Training, Instruction, and Research” working group and we will continue working to advance this proposal in the coming year.


TENURE AND PROMOTION EQUITY: In September 2020, the Anti-Oppression Committee approached Faculty Senate leadership to discuss USU’s plans for addressing tenure guidelines and expectations in response to the COVID pandemic. We are currently planning to research effective polices for ensuring equitable adjustments to these guidelines and expectations, as well as resources for faculty to account for research disruptions in their tenure and promotion materials.

Past Initiatives

More information coming soon