Mercy Summit on Equity and Inclusion

Mercy Summit on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Friday, April 12

Creating an Inclusive Community for All

One of the signature events sponsored by the Salve Commission on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, the annual Mercy Summit on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion offers the Salve Regina community an opportunity to listen, to engage and to understand more fully the scope of issues related to diversity and inclusion on college campuses.

Learning Goals

Each participant will:

  • acquire inclusive communication strategies to foster a sense of belonging and inclusivity in our community.
  • explore cultural differences through regular intercultural engagement.
  • examine inclusive campus leadership through roles or initiatives that foster diversity, equity, and inclusion within the campus community.
  • engage in creating an inclusive learning community through a nonjudgmental exchange of ideas, perspectives, and experiences with others.

Please note: When registering for the summit, participants should also register for two of the educational sessions listed below.

Register for the Summit

    Summit Schedule

    Unless noted otherwise, all events take place in the Bazarsky Lecture Hall.

    • 8:15-8:45 a.m. – Optional continental breakfast
    • 8:45 a.m. – Invocation by Dr. Theresa Ladrigan-Whelpley, vice president for mission integration
    • 8:50 a.m. – Welcome and goals by Dr. Kelli J. Armstrong, president
    • 9 a.m. – Keynote address by Jack Halberstam: "Trans* after Trans"
    • 10:15 a.m. – Breakout discussions on measurable personal commitments in O'Hare classrooms
    • 11 a.m. – Report on measurable personal commitments
    • 11:30 a.m. – Intercultural competence development program presentation and award ceremony
    • 12 p.m. – Lunch in the O'Hare lobby (lunch provided)
    • 1 p.m. – Educational concurrent sessions in O'Hare classrooms
    • 1:50 p.m. – Transition break
    • 2 p.m. – Educational concurrent sessions in O'Hare classrooms
    • 3 p.m. – Debrief reflection

    Educational Concurrent Sessions

    Session 1: Salve Dance Talks Jazz and Justice

    Presenters: Dr. Lindsay Guarino with Livia Armstrong '25, Ashley Blake '26, Morgan Dubay '24 and Jala Settles '25
    Location: O'Hare 103

    Jazz, an American art form with Black American roots, is democracy in practice. Lindsay Guarino and dance students will discuss how understanding the values inherent in jazz within their historical and cultural contexts has helped students to develop an awareness of identity and culture while building authentic community.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session

    Session 2: Situating Toxic Masculinity, Disrupting Gender Violence: Theory and Practice

    Presenters: Dr. Laura O’Toole and Dr. Theo Greenblatt
    Location: O'Hare 107

    We present an analysis of gender and power by exploring how toxic masculine identities and practice are situated in both social structure and lived experience. We focus on how the hegemony of masculinity and heteronormativity - as well as subordinated gender identities and practices - are reproduced in hyper masculinized spaces and show how one prototypical space – the U.S. Navy – is committing values education, advocacy and training resources toward promoting DEI - and disrupting sexual violence within its ranks.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session

    Session 3: Developing Culturally Responsive, Anti-Bias, Anti-Racist Teachers

    Presenters: Dr. Kimberly Behan, Dr. Holly Moore and Dr. Tracy L. Pelkowski
    Location: O'Hare 110

    Salve Regina faculty members from early childhood, elementary and secondary education discuss ways they work to develop future teachers' anti-bias, antiracist and culturally responsive capacities. Specific course topics and pedagogies, curriculum mapping and research findings within and across the three education programs will be shared, followed by ways we seek to collaborate across our education programs and with the University's current diversity, equity and inclusion efforts. Additionally, participants will discuss what has been meaningful in their own experiences or practices with culturally responsive pedagogy.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session

    Session 4: PWI (Predominantly White Institutions) vs. HWCU (Historically White Colleges and   Universities): What is The Difference and Why it is Important

    Presenter: Dr. Victoria Gonzalez
    Location: O'Hare 118

    Typically, when we refer to institutions with a majority white population, we are inclined to use the acronym PWI. However, in this talk, Gonzalez will argue that we need to change our terminology and shift our thinking to the structural implications of being a part of an HWCU: Historical White College and University. This change suggests the need for a paradigm shift in how we approach issues of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session

    Session 5: Move Your Mind, Move Your Feet

    Presenter: Rose Albert, Associate Director, Office of Multicultural Programs and Retention
    Location: O'Hare 206

    In this workshop, participants will continue learning and reflecting on the impact of diversity, equity and inclusion on campus. Committing to ongoing learning, self-reflection and personal growth in understanding and addressing race dynamics and white supremacy. This involves seeking out diverse perspectives, engaging in critical dialogue and challenging oneself to confront biases and assumptions.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session

    Session 6: Pronouns and Gender Diversity

    Presenter: Emily Haggett, Student Engagement and LGBTQ+ Resource Coordinator
    Location: O'Hare 209

    This session will cover the importance of sharing and using pronouns, as well as diverse gender identities such as the transgender and non-binary umbrellas. This training is ideal for any faculty, staff or student that wants to learn how to be more inclusive in their language, and how to properly include the usage of pronouns in their daily life.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session

    Session 7: Gender Identity and Mental Health

    Presenter: McKenzie McNamara, Program Manager for Health Education and Prevention
    Location: O'Hare 217

    Review a national study that explored the relationship between gender identity, challenges experienced by students, psychological distress and suicide behavior for undergraduate students in the United States of America. Using the framework from the national study, we will discuss risk factors and causes for challenges among gender diverse students at Salve. Content warning: Psychological distress, suicide, sexual harassment, discrimination, hazing, intimate relationships.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session

    Session 8: A Snapshot of the Male Perspective at Salve
    (Please note this session has been cancelled)

    Presenter: Sean Sullivan
    Location: O'Hare 218

    A conversation involving what it is often like to be male on a predominantly female campus like Salve, including feedback received from both male students and male employees. While reviewing the perspectives of both male Salve students and staff and faculty, as well as recent research in the "gender gap" on many of today's colleges and universities, we will discuss how the female/male ratio may affect college Salve and beyond.

    Session 9: Using Queer and Trans* Pedagogy Tools in the Classroom and Research

    Presenters: Dr. Donna Harrington-Lueker, Dr. Tara Brooke Watkins, Dr. Kathleen Muirhead and Dr. Matthew Ramsey
    Location: O'Hare 262

    What does applying a queer pedagogy in the classroom look like in practice? How has Jack Halberstam's work influenced Salve faculty research? How might an embrace of trans* experiences open up possibilities for student creativity, performance, classroom engagement and research? Each panelist will share their thoughts and experiences on these topics. We encourage students and faculty both to join us to share their own experiences of how successful classroom cultures have impacted their learning.

    Register for the 1:00 Session

    Register for the 2:00 Session