8/22/12 Symposium

Dr. Renay ScalesEngaging Difference: Race, Ethnicity & Gender

Fall 2012 Teaching & Learning Symposium
Presented by: Dr. Renay Scales, Director of Faculty Development and Faculty in Family Medicine
Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine

Wednesday, 8/22/12
TC-103B, Haverhill Campus

Sponsored by the Center for Professional Development

We have of habit of looking at difference from a deficit model. When we interpret cultural, racial, and gender differences as a deficit, one scholar reports, “the deck is powerfully loaded against [poor] students of color” (Harry and Klingner, 2007). This can also be true as we think of learning and leading across the gender spectrum. 

We all have social identities that make up this incredible quilt we refer to as “diversity.” This workshop will identify and celebrate these. Within the social quilt, we will identify how dominance resonates as normal and difference becomes the equivalent of being disabled.

We will use our time together to have some fun with each other and share feelings about those places where we feel isolated in our privilege and in our subjugation. We will work hard to honor the truth and the misinformation about the impact of these dynamics in educational spaces and in our lives. To engage in a process of positive change, we must be intentional; be willing to hear the realities of others; and use our learning to reframe thinking out next steps—whatever outcomes we desire.

The best part of the experience will be the following outcomes:

  • Learning about the challenges and benefits society has set up for us without blaming and guilting each other
  • Becoming more clear about the language of difference
  • Being loud in a safe place
  • Learning to be more present with our fears and struggles about difference
  • Feeling really good about being the right people to take the work on
  • Forging of an ever closer sense of community

Specific Activities:

  • Introductions – Selected literature on issues of cultural and linguistic diversity, and other guiding principles of the workshop
  • Identifying Key Identities -Exercise to identify participants
  • Exploring Reference Experiences that Shape Our Perceptions about Difference – Examining the impact of messages and experiences about others
  • “Maybe Your Parachute Really is an Umbrella: Reframing What We Already Know” – Practice language and skills central in transformative leadership

Dr. Renay ScalesRenay Scales, PhD

Director, Multicultural Research and the Resource Center
George Mason University

Dr. Renay Scales has served as a senior administrator and faculty for almost thirty -five years. She has been employed in health care, electrical utility, and in higher education. Dr. Scales’ primary roles have been in human resources, labor relations, corporate training, and faculty and curriculum development.

In the last twenty years, she has worked on three presidential teams, and taught courses at the community college, undergraduate and graduate levels in management and leadership, most recently teaching graduate classes in higher education.

Dr. Scales counts among her most significant accomplishments, the following:

  • Appointed by president to represent university on state system-wide strategic
    planning council
  • Served as key member of strategic planning committee at two institutions, one as leader of the effort
  • Developed first diversity strategic plan for two campuses
  • Served as senior labor relations manager for corporation and university working with up to 6 unions
  • Obtained best practice designation from Office of Civil Rights for diversity education
  • As part and parcel of responsibility for faculty partnerships, designed cultural competency related curriculum for infusion into 150 cross-disciplinary classrooms
  • Inaugurated a new journal, Mosaic, that provided original and applied scholarship on multicultural education—domestic and global
  • Designed, piloted, and funded a co-curricular global educational partnership, 6 credit hour program in South Africa
  • Service on two national educational advisory councils including National Conference on Race and Ethnicity (NCORE)
  • Applied and selected as ACE [now]At Home in the World campus and as a pilot institution for intersecting international and multicultural education
  • Inaugural member if Scholar’s Fair, community program encouraging youth to engage in science and math research

For over twenty years, Dr. Scales has also served as senior consultant for the National Coalition Building Institute, a U. S. organization with international partners in England, Switzerland, Germany, Bosnia, Brazil, Canada, and South Africa. Currently, as a Regional Director for NCBI’s Campus Program, she supports 11 campuses in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Georgia including Emory University, University of Georgia, and Ohio State University.

Program Details

Program Schedule
8:30 – 9:00 Continental Breakfast
Program begins promptly at 9:00 a.m.
9:00 – 2:00


Lunch will be provided from 12:00-12:30


The deadline date to RSVP is Wednesday, August 15, 2012.

Interpreting Services:

If you need interpreting services, for this event, please indicate this on the electronic registration form in the appropriate check box and interpreting services will be arranged.