Theme: Dedication to Diversity
Dates: November 12th-15th, 2019

Each year Cultural and Community Centers (CCC) at Kennesaw State University (KSU) sponsors a university-wide student diversity conference, highlighting a theme to help guide the focus of this multi-day conference. Diversity-related topics may involve, but are not limited to: race/ethnicity, class, gender, culture, sexuality or orientation, disabilities/abilities, religion, or age, explored through the prism of the presenter.

This year’s theme is Dedication to Diversity. The conference aims to explore the dedication that the KSU Community has to diversity and all of its aspects, including celebration of various identities, inclusion, and pathways to creating meaningful ways of coming together and celebrating one another.

The conference aims to support students in their exploration of self as they find their wings at Kennesaw State University. The conference will offer sessions that will enable participants to:

  • articulate the advantages and impact of a diverse society;
  • exhibit respect and preserve the dignity of others;
  • recognize social systems and their influence on people;
  • affirm and value the worth of individuals and communities.

Follow us on Instagram (@CCC_KSU) and use the hashtag #KSUSDC19 to keep up with all the fun and enriching events once the 2019 Student Diversity Conference starts!

Student Diversity Conference (SDC) 2019 Schedule


    • 12:30PM - 2:00PM

      SDC 2019 Opening Luncheon

      Key Note Speaker: Dr. Sylvia Carey-Butler, Chief Diversity Officer

      • Location: Leadership Room, Kennesaw Campus Student Center

    • 10:00AM - 10:50AM

      Multi-Cultural Adoption in the US Society

      Presented by: Andrew Alitzer & Dr. David Evans

      “Where are you from?” is a question a student adopted from another country is often asked. One of the inherit benefits of diversity is that one size does not fit all. And, when it comes to international adoption, it only takes knowing a few of these adoptees to realize how this is true for this group!

      • Location: CL1009
    • Student Safe Space

      Presented by: Dani Alexander

      This session exposes participants to basic concepts of LGBTQ cultural competency, including concepts of language, identity terms, inclusion practices, and campus resources. 

      CCC Facilitated Workshop

      •  Location: BB383
    • 11:15AM - 12:05PM

      Advancing Cross-Cultural Awareness through Self-Reflective Action Steps

      Presented By: Dr. Linda Lyons

      In this interactive session, attendees will take a cross-cultural self-assessment and based on individual results, reflective exercises and engaging dialog, participants will create their own personal development plan. Steps will be introduced around designing an effective action plan, and how to identify short-term goals for immediate execution as well as projection of long-term action steps with the intent to continue to build cultural awareness and diversity inclusivity.

      •  Location: EB274
    • CultureBread Person

      Presented By: Aleksandra Ninova-Parris & Khadijah Adebayo

      We are not alone in this world (well, on this planet). Understanding one another may prove to be a challenging task, no matter how closely or far we live from each other because of something that is greater than physical distance – culture. Using the models of cultural theorists Milton Bennett and Darla K. Deardorff, our presenters will help you discover a pathway to cross-cultural understanding and introduce you to someone, who will help make meaning of it all – the CultureBread Person!

      CCC Facilitated Workshop

      •  Location: CL1009
    • 1:30PM - 2:20PM

      Sharing the Stage: Exploring How Women of Color Present for Self and Others

      Presented by: Nicole Phillips & Dr. Nataline Woods

      This session will provide an opportunity for women of color to begin a dialog about the ways in which we effectively advocate for ourselves and our communities. Students who attend this presentation will engage each other (for better or worse) on the ways in which we engage each other consciously and subconsciously.

      •  Location: CL1009
    • Diverse Perspectives

      Presented by: Dani Alexander & Shirmenia Nunes

      When we don’t see eye to eye, miscommunication can happen. Let’s discuss diverse perspectives and communicating through them.

      CCC Facilitated Workshop

      •  Location: CC1056
    • 2:30PM - 3:20PM

      The Other: What We Lose When We Exclude

      Presented by: Laurie McDowell

      This session is focused on the phenomenon of in-group and out-group dynamics, how this dynamic can play out in class or at work, and how awareness can mitigate its negative effects. Participants should acquire a deeper appreciation of inclusion as a habit of mind that will continue to serve them beyond the KSU campus. 

      •  Location: CL1009
    • Intercultural Collaborations: Overcoming the Obstacles

      Presented by: Aleksandra Ninova-Parris & Brandon Jackson

      We often struggle in collaborating with people or entities who do not think the way we do. This, together with other obstacles creates barriers to successful intercultural collaborations. This session will explore these obstacles and help attendees come up with the tools needed to overcome them so that they can effectively and appropriately collaborate across cultures.

      CCC Facilitated Workshop

      •  Location: CC1056
    • 3:30PM - 4:20PM

      Three People

      Presented by: Jessica Duvall

      Where do our assumptions come from? What is the difference between assumptions and judgments? When do we show “different” parts of ourselves? How does this relate to code switching? Have you ever judged a book by its cover?

      In this interactive workshop, participants will begin to answer to these questions while exploring the concepts of stereotyping, socialization, and societal norms. 

      CCC Facilitated Workshop

      •  Location: CL1009
    • Perceptions vs. Reality

      Presented by: Aleksandra Ninova-Parris & Brandon Jackson

      Is what we see what we get? Is a picture worth a thousand words? And whose words?

      This session will explore how our perceptions can alter the reality in which we operate and why. Additionally, the session will examine how the aspects of our public vs. private self can contribute to changing the reality for ourselves and others, and how that affects the actions that we take.

      CCC Facilitated Workshop

      •  Location: CC1056

    • 11:00AM - 11:50AM

      Social Implicit Bias

      Presented by: Justice Brakache

      Do ignorant remarks cancel the everyday lived experiences of new Americans? Does the public view parallel foreigners to extremists?

      Questions such as these lead to the question of implicit bias and the effect that this bias has on our everyday interactions. This session is an investigation into intercultural competence and its production of implicit bias formed by an individual’s experience, exposure, and environment.

      • Location: SC214
    • Being Queer In...

      Presented by: LGBTQ Presidential Commission

      The Presidential Commission on LGBTQ Initiatives is sponsoring a series of roundtables on “Being Queer In….” Roundtable topics may include: being queer in the workplace, being queer in class, being queer in the doctor’s office, being queer in the family, being queer in the community, etc. Also included is a roundtable on “being an ally.” Students, staff, and faculty are encouraged to share and discuss experiences and perspectives at one or more tables.

      • Location: Prillaman Indoor Plaza
    • 12:30PM - 1:20PM

      Self-Care in Social Justice

      Presented by: Maurice Eckstein 

      Introductions to, longevity in, and daily life application of social justice principles can be challenging, exhausting, and unnerving. In order to survive this work, the imperative falls upon each practitioner to either engage or disengage as necessary for one’s very own resiliency in this work. Self-Care in Social Justice is designed as a presentation rooted in both minority identity development theory and practical advice based on experiences of the presenter.

      •  Location: HS1105
    • American Dream Game

      Presented by: Jessica Duvall

      Imagine your favorite childhood board games combined with challenging lessons and conversations for a structured-play experience that encourages students to spend time in someone else’s shoes to explore how bias, stereotypes, discrimination, and systemic inequity can block our path toward “The American Dream.”

      CCC Facilitated Workshop

      • Location: Prillaman Indoor Plaza
    • 4:00PM - 6:00PM

      SDC 2019 Closing Reception

      I-Statement Project Wall Reveal and Discussion.

      • Location: Prillaman Indoor Plaza

    • 9:00AM - 5:00PM

      I-Statement Project Wall Display and Viewing

      Visit the I-Statement Project Wall for a chance to view the I-Statements of fellow KSU students, faculty, and staff about identity, diversity, and inclusion.

      • Location: Prillaman Hall Lobby

The I-Statement Project

The I-Statement Project focuses on exploring topics of identity, inclusion, and diversity. By writing an I-Statement (which does not necessarily have to start with "I"), participants are encouraged to reflect on and condense their experiences with identity, inclusion, and diversity in 10 words or less, and then elaborate on those experience in as much detail as they feel comfortable. The I-Statement Project is an ongoing project that will culminate in the closing events of the 2019 Student Diversity Conference, where statements will be posted on the I-Statement Project Display Wall (with author’s permission), and participants will be welcomed to attend and further share their stories. Stories and associated photos will also be published on the CCC website with permission from the authors.

Submit your I-Statement