New Orleans Conference Schedule

November 4-5, 2022

Day 1 – Friday, November 4, 2022
Registration
5:30pm – 6:00pm

Welcome & Keynote Session
6:00pm – 7:15pm
Session Title: Black Faces in White Spaces
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Christopher Irving
Room: Garden Ballroom

Description: This session will seek to give voice, action, and attention to how students and staff can help navigate safely in predominately white spaces. There is an all too familiar experience for many black folks of being “The Only.” That experience is even more amplified with you being “The Only” in predominantly white spaces. These experiences can be, at times, quite traumatic and require planning and, at times, spot reactions to difficult situations. Participants in this session will gain a greater sense of their triggers and will be tasked with creating reaction plans to navigate these experiences effectively.

Day 2 – Saturday, November 5, 2022
Breakfast
8:00am – 9:00am

Group-based Discussion Session
9:15am – 10:30am
Session Title: Facilitation Skills for Leading Group Dialogue
Presenters: Ayannah Johnson
Room: Garden Ballroom

Description: In this workshop, advisors will learn and practice concrete skills and strategies to help their group members engage in respectful, productive dialogues about diversity and achieve their action goals. Crucial topics such as norm-setting, group facilitation skills, techniques for group processing, trouble-shooting problem moments, and effective co-facilitation will be addressed.

Break
10:30am – 10:45am

Session Block I
10:45am – 12:00pm

Session A
Workshop Title: I’m Not Sorry! – Ending our Unhealthy Relationship With I’m Sorry
Presenter: Ayannah Johnson
Room: Garden Ballroom

Description: We often say some variation of “sorry” for trivial and unnecessary reasons. This can undermine our efficacy as leaders, advocates, and activists. The overuse and misuse of “sorry” can also result in minimizing others’ confidence in our ideas and abilities. Often, those in positions of privilege are less likely to apologize, even when it is appropriate. In this session, we will explore the appropriate use of the words and how to evaluate when to truly apologize. It is not about changing who you are rather it is about being intentional in how you show up.

Session B
Workshop Title: Black Career Mobility: Mentorship’s Role as An Underground Railroad
Presenter: Dr. Duane A. Williams
Room: St. Charles

Description: The underground railroad operated in ‘plain’ sight helping enslaved Blacks to escape their forced bondage. Help came from both Black and White individuals, in the form of safe houses and spaces, to providing food and necessities for the journey. Similarly, this session will explore how mentorship helps young Black individuals navigate spaces that can be difficult, oppressive and toxic.

Session C
Workshop Title: Talk Isn’t Cheap: Facilitation Skills & Group Dialog
Presenter: Dr. Christopher Irving
Room: Canal

Description: The session consists of boundary-breaking, experiential activities that help participants learn about themselves and each other. Dr. Irving will lead participants through a series of customized structured activities that promote the development of trust and safety within the group. Utilizing facilitated group discussions and unique activities, we help participants increase their self-awareness, and help them share thoughts and feelings regarding topics such as racial and ethnic bias, leadership, heterosexism, discrimination, and sexism. The overall goal of the session is to provide an effective resource within the University and positively impact the social justice climate by: Preparing a core group of student leaders, faculty, and staff to be small and large group facilitators. Developing a successful and sustainable means for students to engage in dialogue and resolve conflicts constructively. Potentially impacting the entire University Community by promoting a sense of responsibility and empathy for all students.

Lunch
12:00pm-1:00pm

Session Block II
1:00pm – 2:15pm

Session A
Workshop Title: Afrocentric Support: Bridging the Gap between High School and College
Presenter: Marcus LeGrand
Room: Garden Ballroom

Description: The Afro-Centric Program focuses on bridging the equity gap by providing holistic support of self-identifying Black and Afro-Centric students and it’s allies. We provide paid leadership opportunities for students (i.e. mentorship at summer symposiums, panel discussion, family liaisons, etc…) in the Central Oregon region that elevates their voices, ensuring diverse representation, and that celebrates diversity and culture. We believe that education should be equally accessible while providing systematic support and leadership for all and which provides incomparable opportunity for elevation and success in society.

Session B
Workshop Title: Bye Student Loans & Hello Scholarships
Presenter: India Prather, Esq.
Room: St. Charles

Description: Once in college, scholarship opportunities are nonexistent. Myth. In fact, there are just as many scholarship opportunities for college students as there are high school seniors. However, the primary issues are that (1) students are unaware of their existence and (2) students do not know how to write in a captivating manner to start to win these scholarships. Upon successful completion of this workshop, participants will be able to research and find scholarships that match their particular demographics. Participants will also be able to implement specific writing strategies to help them strengthen their scholarship essays, increasing their chances of winning.

Session C
Workshop Title: 12 Rounds of Effective Leadership: Which Round is the KO?
Presenter: Jarrod Benjamin
Room: Canal

Description: Success is not determined by which round you win in, it’s determined by your drive to push through each round. The defeat in each round is still a part of your victory, and positions you with more experience to leave your corner. Examine your semesters as a 12-round bout. Have you had a round where you left the corner ready for the match, but GPA was falling? Ever had a round when your ideas were rejected from organizations you are a part of? Are your members of your organizations being more loyal to their personal agendas than organization principles? Well, this program will bring you back to your corner and equip you with the necessary training to enter the ring victorious. You’ll swing the K.O. punch with programmatic thrust, tangible results, new leadership strategies, and revived organization pride. Hear the Bell, tap gloves, and let’s Knock em out!

Break
2:15pm – 2:30pm

Session Block III
2:30pm-3:30pm

Session A
Workshop Title: No More Drama: Using Restorative Practices in Social Justice Work
Presenter: Dr. Christopher Irving
Room: Garden Ballroom

Description: Conflict is an inevitable consequence when diverse and charismatic leaders are brought together for a common goal. However, how these leaders deal with those conflicts can determine how effectively the group will operate. This workshop is geared towards empowering participants with effective restorative practice skills that they can use to help facilitate difficult conversations, meetings, or events. Furthermore, attendees of this workshop will leave the session having explored their own comfort level with various dimensions of diversity that might be landmines for conflict.

Session B
Workshop Title: Radical Reimagining: A Healing Framework for Student Leaders
Presenters: Phylicia Currence, LCSW, Jalisa Lewis, LCSW, and Terrence Harper II
Room: St. Charles

Description: This workshop aims to provide student leaders with a paradigm of radical healing (first proposed by French and colleagues, 2019). Core features of this paradigm include collectivism, critical consciousness, radical hope, strength & resilience, and cultural authenticity & self-knowledge. Student leaders will be equipped to manage the multiple demands they face on campus as a function of their intersectional identities.

Session C
Workshop Title: Change Agent Leaders: A Pathway to Success
Presenter: Jarrod Benjamin

Room: Canal

Description: Growing up, I was always told that to truly enjoy success, you have to have experienced loss. As a leader, I have lost before. It was not the moment of loss that held on, it was a lesson in ensuring this does not become a habit that transitions to a behavior. Through oppression and limited rights, our oppressors imagined that the oppressed would become content with the lack of rights and privilege. Instead, the lack birthed a movement. During the BET Awards, Tyler Perry stated, “But while you’re fighting for a seat at the table, I’ll be down in Atlanta building my own.” This program will share how leaders that traditionally were oppressed have used this to create increased pathways to success (built their own table). This program reveals that each leader is pregnant with potential to win and will give birth to success. We will collectively celebrate success stories of “first” in an effort to make Black Change Agent Leaders a norm and not just a celebratory “first”. (I.e. 2008 First Black US President | i.e. 2021 First Woman of Color VP of the United States | i.e. 2021 First Black Senator in Georgia | i.e. 2020 First Black Mayor of Natchitoches, Louisiana).

Break
3:30pm – 3:40pm

Closing Session
3:40pm – 4:00pm
Title: Closing Remarks, and Evaluations
Presenters: Black Students Lead Conference Team

Room: Garden Ballroom