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Dean's Diversity Lecture & Panel with Dr. Cynthia Dillard - Listening to the Voices of Equity: Towards Diversity in Recruitment and Retention

Champaign , USA
Education Building, Room 22

Education Building, Room 22

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Dr. Cynthia B. Dillard will give a Dean's Diversity Lecture at the College of Education at Illinois on April 6, 2018.

Speaker: Dr. Cynthia Dillard

Structures of inequity are grand challenges to diversity in education today. Institutions must recognize that such challenges cannot be responded to in a light way or with a quick recruitment or retention program.  Instead, such challenges must be seen as complex and multilayered, requiring a different kind of inquiry and the development of sustained relationships to people and to cultural knowledge. This talk takes up that critical stance, one that focuses on equity as a way to increase and sustain diversity within education and as a mandate for (re)search. Foregrounding equity in diversity work shifts the conversation towards addressing historical and contemporary inequities of opportunity through studying them, understanding them from multiple perspectives, and marshaling that knowledge as a transformative force for change. 

Dr. Cynthia B. Dillard (Nana Mansa II of Mpeasem, Ghana, West Africa) is the Mary Frances Early Professor in Teacher Education and Department Chair in the Department of Educational Theory and Practice at The University of Georgia. Her research interests include critical teacher education, spirituality in education, and African/African American feminist studies. Beyond numerous published articles and book chapters, two of her books, On spiritual strivings: Transforming an African American woman’s academic life (SUNY Press, 2006) and Learning to (re)member the things we’ve learned to forget:  Endarkened feminisms, spirituality and the sacred nature of research (Peter Lang, 2012) have been selected as Critics’ Choice Book Award winners by the American Educational Studies Association (AESA). In addition to receiving a number of awards related to teaching, Dr. Dillard was the 2012 recipient of the AERA Distinguished Contributions to Gender Equity in Education Research Award, given for her distinguished research and practices that advance public understanding of gender in education. She also received the Division G Henry T. Trueba Award at the 2016 AERA annual meeting.  This prestigious award honors a researcher whose scholarship and teaching has led to the transformation of the social context of education. Dr. Dillard is currently working on a biography of the namesake of her endowed position, Dr. Mary Frances Early, the first Black person to graduate from the University of Georgia. She is also the Director of the University of Georgia’s Ghana Study Abroad in Education Program and has founded and directs a preschool and elementary school in Mpeasem (M-pee-a-sem) in the Central Region in Ghana, West Africa.  There, she also holds the distinct honor of being enstooled as Queen Mother of Development (Nkosua Ohemaa) for the village, an esteemed leadership position within the community, for life.

Please register for the event with Amy Summers at

Cost: Free

Contact: Amy Summers217-333-0960