As part of efforts to build a welcoming culture supportive of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging, the college offers resources and opportunities for all members of our community to learn about how to be a better Ally to underrepresented/underserved groups and diversity in general.
Resources for Allies, Advocates, and Accomplices
Readings For Everyone:
Allyship is a lifelong process of building relationships based on trust, consistency, and accountability with marginalized individuals and/or groups of people and of ongoing learning about how we can all change our behavior to make people from marginalized groups feel safe and included. Allyships is not something we can self-identify with, it must be recognized by the communities we seek to support. Increasingly marginalized communities encourage people who wish to support them to go beyond allyship and to become advocates and active partners, rather than passive supporters.
We all add diversity to our community and we all have learning to do about how to interact with and think about groups to which we ourselves don’t belong. Here is a list of resources you can use to learn more.
- Teaching Tolerance.org Ally Toolkit - This brief overview and toolkit is a great place to start!
- What does it mean to be an Ally? Definition and Characteristics
- Guide to Allyship - An open-source guide “contributed to by people from all walks of life....,a resource where anyone who is considering becoming an ally understands the pros and cons of what being an ally entails.”
- Being a Good Ally - In this Diverse Issues in Education Magazine Blog, an Asian American ally of the African-American community notes that “a good ally takes care to avoid appropriating another person’s suffering.”
- Moving for Ally to Accomplice: How Far Are You Willing to Go to Disrupt Racism in the Workplace? – Diverse Issues in Higher Education - “Allyship is not enough. In order to disrupt racism and work on achieving equity, one must be willing to move from ally to accomplice. As an accomplice, you will walk the talk and take the steps necessary to dismantle the power structure of White privilege and supremacy and create substantial and sustainable societal and institutional change that treats all persons with dignity and respect.”
- 35 Dumb Things Well-Intended People Say - Dr. Maura Cullen
- A Note From Your Hearing-Impaired Colleagues: Just Use a Microphone Already - The Chronicle of Higher Education - “It’s not about how you feel using a microphone. It’s about how others can best hear.”
- Ableism/Language – This post discusses the way Ableist Language perpetuates systems that are oppressive to some people and is experienced as a type of violence. It is meant to help us be aware of how our language and the ways those of us who can, can work the change our language to be more inclusive.
Black and African Americans:
- We Need to Talk About Digital Blackface in Reaction GIFs - A short article by Teen Vouge that covered the potentially unforeseen harm caused by the use of black people as reaction GIFs, part of what is called “digital blackface.”
- White people assume niceness is the answer to racial inequality. It's not - This article talks about how “nice” doesn’t equal not racist and how our ideas that “nice” people cannot be racist is a major obstacle to dealing with problems around race
- GLSEN Safe Space Kit - Is a 48 page Guide to Being an Ally to LGBT Students.
- Straight for Equality - Materials include a number of free downloadable resources including Guide to being a straight Ally, 10 Things You Can Do to Be an Ally, Equality Literacy 101, and other materials.
- Explore: Allies - Learn how allies can help make the world more understanding and supportive for the LGBTQ community.
- Coming Out as a Supporter: A Guide to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Americans Human Rights Campaign - Produced by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation in Partnership with PFLAG (the nation's largest family and ally organization), “this guide is designed to help build understanding and comfort.
- An A-Z Guide to Being a Muslim Ally - This is a short article from Huffington Post provides a list of ways people can help support Muslim-Americans.
Native and Indigenous:
- ALLYSHIP - The Anti-Oppression Network is a coalition of individuals and groups dedicated to working towards liberation, decolonization, anti-oppression and intersectionality (representing diverse minority groups). This page lays out roles and responsibilities of people seeking to engage in allyship.
- Changing the Narrative about Native Americans: A Guide for Allies - This is a 44 page long guide to help people unlearn false and harmful narratives about Native American Peoples, learn history and ways to support positive new narratives.
- Indigenous allyship: An overview (and Toolkit) - “This document will act as a resource for non-Indigenous people seeking to become allies to Aboriginal people. To help allies understand the struggle for decolonization and nationhood and what eﬀective allyship to Aboriginal peoples means.”
- How to Be An Ally To Indigenous People - Indigenous Perspectives Society: “While a few Indigenous people have taken on the task of educating all of us about our collective history, while at the same time healing their own deep wounds, this work is not their responsibility alone. Allies need to take on the task of social transformation, and share the responsibility of ensuring we move into a future built on integrity, good relationships, and trust.” Includes a link to an “Ally Bill of Responsibilities” and a list of resources.
- What Every Teacher Needs to Know to Teach Native American Students – This article discusses the cultural learning styles of Native students in relation to classroom environments that often interfere with the way Native students learn, and offers promising practices.
Women and Gender:
- How some men are challenging gender inequity in the lab -Offering support to female colleagues can trigger a culture change that makes science and engineering more equitable for all: In this article in Nature international journal of science, six male researchers describe their efforts to support their female colleagues.
For Further Study: Books and Additional Materials
Micro-aggressions: Derald Wing Sue
- Sue, Derald Wing. (2010) Microaggressions in everyday life: Race, gender and sexual orientation. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
- Sue, Derald Wing. (2010) Microaggressions and marginality. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.
- Best Practices in Diversity Strategic Planning Workshop: Derald Wing Sue Presentation- link to workshop and materials, including a radio interview and a brief introduction to microaggressions.
Implicit Bias and Interventions:
- Steele, Claude. (2010). Whistling Vivaldi: How stereotypes affect us and what we can do. New York: W.W. Norton & Company.
- Distinguished Lecture on Engineering and Humanity: Stereotype Threat and Identity Threat: The Science of a Diverse Community by Claude Steele - site lists resources about implicit bias
Note: The site requires Penn State access ID login. EMS distributed copies of the book and conducted a series of discussions.
- EMS has partnered with Penn State’s Stand For State Program to offer a series of scenario-based discussions for faculty, staff, post-docs, and graduate students to “build awareness of situations that are problematic” and “brainstorm proactive choices that lead towards creating a more inclusive and supportive environment for all.” Visit Bystander Intervention webpage >>
Inclusive Instructional Environments:
- Best Practices in Diversity Strategic Planning Workshop - "Improving Courses and Curricula by Including Diversity" by Thomas F. Nelson: Materials, including session recordings are available online.
- Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence - offers workshops on Creating Inclusive Courses and other topics
- John A. Dutton e-Eductaion Institute - offers learning design and faculty development services supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion in both online and resident instruction.
Workshops, Discussions, and Training:
If you are interested in increasing your facility with diversity, equity, and inclusion, there are several options for learning more.
- Penn State Learning Resources Network - offers a number of courses at no cost, both online or in-person. (Access ID login required). Under “Browse for Training,” click on “Business Skills” then “Diversity/Inclusion” Or use the search bar.
- Affirmative Action Office Diversity Education Services - offers workshops for faculty and staff. View website for a list of available professional development programs. Customized programs can also be developed to suit the needs of individual departments.
- Safer People Safer Places - offers regular workshops, including the pre-requisite “Safer People Safer Places – LGBTQ Foundations Workshop.” Visit website to view available workshops.
- Stand for State - Penn State’s bystander intervention program focusies on sexual and relationship violence, mental health concerns, acts of bias, and risky drinking and drug use, with workshops open to students as well as faculty and staff. Stand For State promotes a simple methodology of 3Ds: Direct interaction, Distraction, and/or Delegation to guide responses that bystanders can undertake in any situation.