Summit Theme: 25th Diversity Summit

Tuesday, November 7

  • Comments from Chancellor Phil DiStefano, Boulder City Manager Jane Brautigam, and CUSG President Betsy Sabala
  • Ben Kirshner, CU Engage
  • Ruth Baheta, CU Undergraduate
  • Emmanuel Melgoza Alfaro, CU Alumnus
  • Gloria Neal, GloKnows Unlimited LLC,
  • Kim Miller, Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE)
  • Ana Karina Casas Ibarra, Motus Theater, performs “La Frontera”

Won't you be glad when there are no more firsts? The first Black woman to... The first Latina woman to... The first Black man to..., etc. How about just being happy because the best person got the job, promotion, title, house, the business, etc. Is that possible in society today? How do we get there?  To get the answer, we must go back and discuss how we got here.  We will have a candid conversation about the history and politics of "firsts." 

Join a facilitated dialogue exploring the diverse range of perspectives, hopes and fears held by members of the CU community. Dialogue participants will be invited to share their experiences about being seen and heard on campus and how these experiences can help us to collectively find our way forward.

This session will provide an overview of what DACA is, together with an explanation of the ASSET legislation in Colorado. Members of the Inspired Dreamers will participate in the conversation and share from their experiences. Given the end of the DACA program, presenters will discuss with the audience what's next for the DREAMers.

Join the Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE) for a discussion on how athletes across the nation are using their platform to improve race relations and drive social progress. Participants will also have an opportunity to experience an activity from RISE’s curriculum designed to educate and empower student-athletes, coaches and sports administrators to be leaders in discussing and addressing matters of racism, diversity and inclusivity within their teams, schools and communities.

Join a facilitated dialogue exploring the diverse range of perspectives, hopes and fears held by members of the CU community. Dialogue participants will be invited to share their experiences about being seen and heard on campus and how these experiences can help us to collectively find our way forward.


David J. King III is the Director of Diversity and Belonging at AirBnb, where he leads the strategic vision of diversity programming throughout the global organization to include recruitment, retention, engagement, anti-discrimination and community outreach. Mr. King has worked on diversity issues for more than 10 years, first as the Chief for Diversity Management and Outreach at the U.S. State Department and most recently as Director of the Office of Civil Rights and Diversity for the Peace Corps. Mr. King will discuss the diversity and inclusion efforts he has been part of and will talk about next steps for Airbnb, as well trends in inclusion in the tech industry.


The Chancellor’s Committee on Gender and Sexuality Center is a group of LGBTQ and allied staff, students, and faculty from across campus. During the Diversity Summit, we hold a lunchtime caucus session in which graduate students, undergraduate students, staff, and faculty are invited to build community and share about their experiences at CU. Please join us to connect with like-minded people, discuss campus and community issues, and learn more about our initiatives. Tacos, both vegetarian and meat options, will be provided.


We will have an inspiring presentation from professional climber Craig DeMartino who also happens to be an adaptive athlete.  Then Craig and panelists from the Rec Center, Disability Services and CU Adaptive Athletes will share info about the adaptive outdoor recreation opportunities available in the Front Range followed by questions from the audience. 


Join a facilitated dialogue exploring the diverse range of perspectives, hopes and fears held by members of the CU community. Dialogue participants will be invited to share their experiences about being seen and heard on campus and how these experiences can help us to collectively find our way forward.


A moderated panel featuring representatives from secular and religious student groups at CU Boulder will discuss the how we can, despite our different worldviews and beliefs, work together to move the ball forward with respect to diversity and inclusion at CU Boulder. Attendees will practice listening to different viewpoints that they disagree with and engaging with them in a productive cooperative manner. We will also discuss how we can disagree in productive and respectful ways without turning to violence and vitriol. 


We will introduce and practice a variety of tools for use in conflict and crisis in both our personal and professional lives using current information from trauma-informed mental health practices and law enforcement. We will discuss the trauma response from a neurological perspective and help outline basic strategies for cultivating skillful responses to the range of possible behaviors that exist in human interactions. De-escalation is a powerful set of internal tools to use with the self and others to create and maintain safety and promote healthy communication in difficult situations. Such tools can sustain connection when it is most vulnerable. You will leave this session feeling empowered to utilize your mind and body to stay centered and effective in crisis and conflict and to be able to assist others in doing the same.


ADA Compliance will provide a general overview of the current regulations and share how they relate to attendees at events on-campus. Attendees will gain valuable insight on current topics such as physical access, sign language interpreting, closed captioning, assisted listening devices, and service animals. In addition, ADA Compliance will discuss how to assess a facility for accessibility in the planning stages of an event. During the hour session, case study discussions will provide opportunities to dive deeper into the topics shared in presentation. Ample time for audience Q&A will exist during and following the presentation.

Contemplative Practices are a valuable tool in allowing us to listen deeply to others and ourselves while responding with compassion, authenticity and genuine curiosity. This workshop will offer practices that can assist in building our capacity to be our most present, openhearted selves for the Diversity and Inclusivity Summit. Participants will learn specific mindfulness/contemplative practices that can increase self-awareness and presence through compassion, empathy and curiosity, leading to a greater capacity to listen and communicate with open-heartedness and clarity during the events of the Summit and beyond

The capacity for deep listening is a crucial skill for promoting dialogue and understanding across difference. In this session, we'll harness contemplative tools to help us become embodied and connected to present experience. Engaging Otto Scharmer's four levels of listening, we'll engage in small-group dialogues around issues of belonging. Attendees will have the opportunity to engage in contemplative practices (mindfulness, body scan) and deep listening.

SALSA Lotería is an autobiographical monologue performance that explores the strength, resilience, and courage of Latina immigrants. In this performance, six monologues by Latina immigrants from Boulder County are woven around the story of Rosa Elena Valle Cerezo, a woman from Mexico who makes her family’s salsa recipe live on stage while she talks about her life. All the other stories circle in and out of Rosa’s story. The monologues of SALSA Lotería explore the complex intersection of race, class, gender, citizenship, and documentation status in the lives of Boulder County Latina immigrants and their families. The piece concludes with an invitation for the public to share Rosa’s fresh salsa as performers informally socialize with and answer the audience’s questions.

Join a facilitated dialogue exploring the diverse range of perspectives, hopes and fears held by members of the CU community. Dialogue participants will be invited to share their experiences about being seen and heard on campus and how these experiences can help us to collectively find our way forward.

Whether you are an adaptive athlete or just a climber looking to get better, come share a rope with Craig and learn some of his tips to become a better climber.

As part of the "Charlottesville in Historical Perspective" series of events that the History Department is sponsoring this year, this panel discussion will examine the historical dimensions of the recent controversies over historical monuments and memorials.

Wednesday, November 8

Supervisors, of student employees and professional staff/faculty, have institutional power of varying levels to create inclusive environments. This workshop will provide suggestions and examples for harnessing that power. Learn/recall the importance of creating an inclusive environment, gain suggestions for creating brave spaces and productive conversations with your employees, and leave the workshop with a network of supervisors on campus looking to incorporate inclusion into their supervision practices.

Hear from a panel of three dynamite women who have crafted very different careers in tech-related fields, from industry to academia. Their stories reveal strategies about how to remain agile in the fast-paced tech world and move forward in your career--while sometimes overcoming challenges that relate to deeply ingrained social and gendered biases.  Panelists will respond to facilitated questions in a structured discussion for the first portion of the session, followed by open discussion with the audience. Attendees will learn about "grit" in action, about ways that the panelists responded to personally sensitive situations related to move forward in their careers. Attendees will learn about strategies that the panelists used to become successful. Attendees will build empathy for women as members of an underrepresented group in the tech industry. Attendees will be more aware of systemic injustices in how they manifest in the modern tech workplace.

This session considers the ways that the reception of information limits or promotes inclusivity. Focusing both on effective listening and engaged reading, this session argues that true inclusivity requires a specific rhetorical frame that aims not to be inclusive of itself but to promote an environment of understanding.

Students with print disabilities have long struggled with digitally-based media.  One may assume that because it’s digital, it is accessible, but that is simply not the case.  Learn what it means for materials to be accessible, and learn some easy tips and tricks for making your own materials accessible to students in all levels of learning.

Innovation doesn't happen in an echo chamber. When everyone thinks the same way or has similar backgrounds, it's difficult for new ideas to emerge. When we actively incorporate diversity into problem solving, suddenly, more possibilities appear and greater creative thinking occurs. This session will show you tools that support innovation, especially ones that encourage divergent thinking and leveraging multiple perspectives.

Learning how to use new pronouns can be difficult, but it doesn't have to be impossible or terrifying. This workshop will teach you how to use gender neutral pronouns and how to be a great ally to the transgender and gender non-conforming people in your lives. Attendees will learn how to correctly use various types of gender neutral pronouns. They will also learn how to correct themselves when they make a mistake in regards to pronoun usage and how to act as allies to the trans identified people across campus and that they will meet later in their lives, mostly in regards to their pronouns and proper names.

We as educators must recognize that striving toward inclusive excellence demands that we recognize the diversity of the learning styles, academic backgrounds, proficiencies, and aspirations of our students, and that we build our course curricula and adjust our teaching styles to accommodate these important differences within and across our classes.  To this end, this session explores several practical ways faculty can work to embrace the academic diversity of our students, such as adopting flexible deadlines, increasing opportunities for experiential learning, and creating individually-tailored formative assignments.

In our quest towards creating a more inclusive work place cultures at cu and the city of Boulder, simple shifts such as the language we use, can go far in creating a more inclusive and welcoming workplace.
In this panel we will feature women working in male-congenial environments and explore questions such as:

  • How do you go about creating inclusive language?
  • How do women go about performing in these traditionally male-dominated environments?
  • Do you feel that you can really be yourself in that environment?

Tu Eres Mi Otro Yo, You Are My Other Me. The Aquetza Summer Program is a space of learning where education is humanized. Critical Self-Reflection, Precious & Beautiful Knowledge, Transformation and the Will to Act are some the values that inform our work. Come learn more!

Our goal is to promote a better understanding of what a disability is, how it impacts an individual, and how we, as a society, can better interact with and promote an inclusive culture that welcomes, respects, and values those with disabilities. Come learn about guidelines to using person first language and disability etiquette dos and don'ts. Attendees will learn how to foster an inclusive culture that welcomes, respects, and values those with disabilities.

Join Alaina Beaver in a hands-on session that puts the practical elements of Universal Design into contextual practice. Universal Design is a framework for ensuring that anything you create can work for the maximum number of people possible, and it starts with the right frame of mind. There are lots of ways to engage in digital accessibility that are much easier than you might imagine... we'll discuss some easy tips for composing documents, using pdfs, creating presentations, and writing email so that you'll be well on your way to complying with CU Boulder's Accessibility Policy. Attendees will learn how to make documents, presentations, and pdfs accessibly. Resources include references, links to tools such as CU Boulder's Sensus Access tool for pdfs and handy color contrast analyzers, and examples of accessible content.

Between our intention and our impact on inclusion lies our use of language. Do we always say what we mean? Join us for a workshop with case studies and facilitated discussion 1) to learn about the difference between non-discriminatory and inclusive language; 2) to reflect on scenario-based uses of language; and 3) to develop an inclusive vocabulary to support student success. This session is a skill-building workshop in inclusive language practice.

The English language has become the primary lingua franca in our times. The spread of English as a global language has brought effects on our lives—both positive and negative. This workshop looks into the implications of the spread of English as a global language for educational policies and practices. We will discuss how globalization (re)defines and (re)positions our languages, identities, communities, and literacies. The aim of the workshop is to guide the audience to think about how our campus can create a more intercultural educational environment that can benefit both native and non-native English speaking students. (Translation into Chinese provided by students.)


Test-taking accommodations, note-taking services and alternate format of textbooks, oh my! Come learn about disability, CU Boulder’s Disability Services office and classroom accommodations for students with disabilities. In an open question and answer format, this roundtable discussion is an opportunity for faculty, staff and students to ask about and discuss anything disability related. Participant questions may range from accommodation implementation all the way to disability etiquette. Join the Directors of the Disability Services office for an hour of engaging conversation and we look forward to seeing you there!

Join the Chancellor’s Committee for Women for lunch and we will share results we learned from the Listening Lunches over the past 1.5 years. We want to hear from you as we “find our way” to making change. We want your help in generating ideas and recommendations for potential changes that can be made.  We will provide lunch, you provide your voice. RSVP’s are helpful but not required. Email to

This workshop showcases student work from a digital humanities collaboration to tell stories challenging “single story” stereotypes they encounter as they traverse pathways toward graduation. Students will present their work and help facilitate discussions about how student stories can be used to shape campus conversations about equity, access, and inclusion.  Participants will:

  • surface their own stories about assumptions and hierarchies that operate in their departments or programs at CU;
  • witness a model for how to include student voices and knowledge in crucial equity conversations; and
  • strategize about how to include student voices and knowledge in those conversations. Digital narrative screening plus small group work.

Learn how to create more inclusive environments for students with a variety of backgrounds.  Attendees will learn how to disrupt harmful language, as well as how to help cater too, and celebrate, differences.

The practice of establishing guidelines for diversity conversations is intended to create “safe spaces” where students can engage with one another over controversial issues with honesty, sensitivity and respect. More and more often, however, students invoke the safe space guidelines whenever the dialogue becomes challenging. When did uncomfortable become unsafe?  The presenter will engage participants in a conversation about creating brave spaces in order to challenge students—and ourselves—to stay in the difficult dialogue that brings about real change.

Learn about the different spectrum of gender and sexuality, some of the experiences of lgbtq+ students on this campus, and some stellar allyship tips. Attendees will learn how to be a better ally and create a safer space for their lgbtq+ friends and peers.

Queer theory provides a helpful perspective in illuminating the ways in which classroom spaces can unintentionally perpetuate oppressive practices. This session highlights how attendees can apply a queer pedagogical framework to classroom settings, in order to interrogate existing classroom practices and norms in building spaces that are more inclusive of marginalized identities. Attendees will understand, broadly, what a queer theoretical lens can lend in terms of identifying oppressive practices in their courses.  Furthermore, attendees will understand ways to apply a queer pedagogical approach in the classroom to work towards anti-oppressive practices that foster inquiry and interrogation of academic spaces.

There is a dominant perception that individuals have to protect their own resources. We will examine and endeavor to heal scarcity thinking on a personal level using a short exercise to attend to envy and competition, which arise out of scarcity thinking. We will explore how media messages perpetuate scarcity thinking, particularly in public policy regarding DACA, health care, tax reform, and America-first foreign policy. This workshop will interweave a political critique framework and personal examination. Participants will practice how to think inclusively and learn how to teach others in their departments and organizations how to think expansively about WHO matters.

What does it mean to be afraid? How do we find courage to move forward in the face of obstacles? How do we move from a place of fear or anger to one of hope and action? In this facilitated discussion, we will explore these questions together and identify steps to “courageously lean into the sensitive places in our communities and in ourselves to awaken a new authenticity.”

Bring Them Back is a piece about bringing back the fallen, whether it’s slaves or women or people who died in the AIDS epidemic, it’s about paying homage to them and taking up the space for them—taking up a room and being full for those who couldn’t. In a way, this presentation has become a lesson on perseverance and selflessness. I wanted to find a way to create a safe space inside of this piece for dancers to explore and live as their most honest selves, finding our way through this dark time will not be easy but it is a risk we must take.

Shame is a normal human emotion which arises out of our need for belonging. Most people believe shame means “I’m not good enough” or “I can’t fit in.” Unfortunately these interpretations can reinforce exclusion. How can a more precise definition of shame move us towards the social ideals of our choosing and the inclusive community we want to create? Attendees will have the opportunity to engage in guided journaling using a technique based in cognitive science, and to participate in a yoga practice which facilitates a felt sense of finding our way forward. You are welcome to participate in the level of movement that your ability level and clothing allows. A limited number of yoga mats will be provided, or you may bring your own.

This open forum reviews the highlights of the 2014 Graduate Student Climate Survey and asks for input from attendees about what we can do to improve this situation. Graduate students are encouraged to attend.