A message from the undergraduate student editors of this issue of Expansions.
To readers, and the wonderful faculty, staff, and students of the School of Education:
We present to you this year’s publication of the Expansions newsletter brought to you by the Office for Diversity, Inclusion, Justice, and Equity (dije) here in the School of Education (SOE).
Within this year’s edition, we wanted to highlight what has been the focus of our office over the past year: Healing, liberation, and anti-racism. We’ve hosted many events and programs that surround our goals, and we’ve also felt the need to acknowledge others within the SOE community who have been doing work towards these goals or have even made them their own.
We hope that as you read this issue, you are not only inspired by the many leaders within the SOE community but also willing to be reflective of yourself and how you chose to engage the communities around you.
Our hearts go out to those who may have experienced any form of loss within the last year. We want to acknowledge that COVID-19 (“the Coronavirus”) has impacted our lives in more ways than one and that the transitions that many of us had to navigate were tough. We want to highlight the journey to achieving healing that we all cycle through at points in our lives, and how while it may be difficult, we’re in the process right now, and we are still blessed to see another day. We wanted this edition of Expansions to be just as amazing as YOU, and we’re glad to know that we had the privilege and pleasure of serving the SOE community one last time through the efforts going into this publication.
The following ethics drive the work of the dije Office: love, trust, authenticity, and responsibility. Self-love is a prerequisite for individual and collective liberation. Therefore, we have a humanizing agenda that values truth-telling, respects boundaries, and prioritizes grace and care. Our work comes from a sacred ancestral rhythm guided by trust. We share a disposition of humility, a willingness to unlearn, an acceptance of thoughts in process, and each other with our vulnerability. Showing up as our true selves while acknowledging that our selves contain the witness of our ancestors and the historical situations in which we were raised. Lastly, our work must name, be easily understood by, and accountable to the groups we endeavor to serve. We make it clear that our work must center the following folx: Black (African American/Black), Latinx, Indigenous, international students, Asian Americans, and Pacific Islander folx, queer, trans, non-binary, folx with disabilities, working class/poor, religious minorities, and any other historically minoritized group.
We hope that our ethics were embodied in the work we’ve done this year, while also realizing that the real work is never finished. To the next generation of leaders, we thank you for your passion, grace, and love for others! We hope you enjoy reading this year’s edition of Expansions.
Mariah C. Benford
LSA Sociology & Social Work (‘21)
dije Intern, Fall 2020 & Winter 2021
University of Michigan
Brianna R. Morigney
LSA Political Science (‘21)
dije Intern, Fall 2021 & Winter 2021
University of Michigan
MORE FROM Expansions Vol 4
The School of Education is proud to be a leader in the campus-wide initiative promoting Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity. Adding "Justice" to these values underscores the role of educators in the creation of just societies. Through research, public scholarship, community building, and the preparation of education practitioners and policymakers, we articulate and advance our dije agenda.