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Professional Development

Faculty & Staff Workshops

Below is an overview of workshops the ACM consortial office will provide to enhance intercultural skills among ACM faculty and staff. The sessions will cover a range of topics from in-class facilitation, to student advising/mentorship and other institutional processes and decisions. Our goal is to provide skills and evidence-based practices that individuals can take back to their specific departmental and divisional contexts.

Workshops are scheduled for every fourth Thursday of the month from 4:00 - 5:30p.m. (CT). Sessions will be recorded and made available on this page within a week of the session. Alternative dates will be identified for November (Thanksgiving) and December (Winter Break).

Registration is open for our September 24th session.

Register for September Session  

Session 1: Charting the "How": Coalition Building and Policy Change in the Age of Anti-racism (Faculty & Staff)

Date & Time: Thursday, September 24, 4:00 - 5:30 p.m. (CT)


In the past, diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts on many of our campuses have been the purview of staff offices devoted to intercultural relations; beyond that, much of the work has often fallen by default (and in the form of uncredited labor) into the lap of faculty, staff, and students of color. The work has also often been reactive - responding to a racist incident on campus, for example - rather than sustained.  Events of the last two years have illustrated the need to have a more intentional, proactive, and cooperative campus-wide effort to create a culture of equity and anti-racism.  In this presentation, staff and faculty from Lake Forest College will share the work they have done over the last two years to create partnerships among faculty, staff, and students that have led to a multi-faceted set of initiatives and policy changes.  We are at the beginning of this work, but we hope that sharing our challenges and successes will lead to a meaningful discussion among the Associated Colleges of the Midwest.


  • Claudia Ramirez Islas, Director for the Office of Intercultural Relations, Lake Forest College (she/her/hers)
  • Anna Jones, Professor of History and Director of the Office of Faculty Development, Lake Forest College (she/her/hers)
  • André Meeks, Assistant Director for the Office of Intercultural Relations, Lake Forest College (pronoun indifferent)

Session 2: Inclusive Discourse – Bringing Everyone to the Table (Faculty & Staff)

A hallmark of liberal arts education is the exchange of ideas during classroom and other discussions. This works, however, only if everyone feels they can contribute and will be heard. This workshop will present strategies for structuring classroom and co-curricular discussions, skills to make sure everyone can contribute, and ways to elevate active listening principles to ensure all are heard.

Session 3: Inclusive Discourse – Free Speech & Disagreement (Faculty & Staff)

Conversations, whether on course materials, connecting in-class topics to the outside world or in other co-curricular settings, can create tensions among participants. This workshop will address academic freedom and provide strategies for encouraging productive disagreement.

Session 4: Culturally Responsive Student Mentorship (Faculty)

Students look to faculty for guidance in the classroom and in navigating a major over their time on our campuses. Research has shown that a single model of mentorship may not resonate with all students. This session will introduce mentorship and advising skills to better connect and build a relationship with students of color throughout their collegiate experience.

Session 5: Diversifying Pedagogy (Faculty)

A syllabus is a communication of course goals, materials that faculty want students to engage, and a roadmap for a semester/term/block. Syllabi can also inadvertently convey unintended impressions about who has educational value. This workshop offers guidance and reflection on reviewing syllabi and how bringing in historically marginalized scholars can support our teaching goals.

Session 6: Cultural Taxation (Faculty & Staff)

Coined by Amado Padilla in the mid-1990s, “cultural taxation” refers to the burden placed on faculty and staff of color for engaging in campus service that is directly connected to their personal identity. Actions like mentoring students of color, serving on diversity committees, and other forms of “invisible labor” take a toll on faculty of color over time. This session highlights areas of cultural taxation on campus, methods for making that labor visible, and how campus colleagues can best support their peers in these spaces.

Session 7: Hiring, Promotion, & Tenure (Faculty)

Even as our campuses diversify their student populations faster than regional or national averages, there remains a gap in hiring diverse faculty and retaining them. While more people are familiar with implicit bias as something to be aware of in evaluation, how our biases influence decision-making can be different along one’s professional journey. This session reviews common challenges to faculty diversity and offers evidence-based best practices attendees can customize to their institution for addressing faculty diversity.

Session 8: Names and Commemorations (Faculty & Staff)

History and tradition are commemorated in higher education through naming conventions, including endowed fellowships, named professorships, naming rights for buildings, and other forms of recognition. While maintaining that cultural significance is important, there are renewed calls to review these symbols and their meaning. This workshop focuses on how campuses balance their historical origins with contextualizing their significance in our current environment.