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UAS Power & Privilege Symposium

Tuesday, November 6, 2018
8:15 a.m.–7 p.m.
UAS Juneau Campus
Portions will be streamed live over the internet
The Symposium is scheduled as a regular part of the university’s fall calendar; most classes do not meet on the scheduled day to allow broad participation by students, faculty, staff, and community members.

UAS Power and Privilege Symposium Logo

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Thank you for your interest and/or attendance at the third annual Power and Privilege Symposium. We would appreciate your feedback - access it using the link above.

For questions about the symposium, please contact Nathan Bodenstadt or Juliette Lowery.

About the UAS Power and Privilege Symposium

The 3rd Annual UAS Power & Privilege Symposium is a one day conference-style event designed to give members of the UAS & Southeast Alaska communities an opportunity to explore dynamic and pressing societal changes through difficult, thoughtful, and honest conversations about the complex and increasingly diverse society in which we live.

The Symposium helps advance the university’s role in pursuing truth, advancement of learning, and the dissemination of knowledge in a setting supportive of free inquiry and discussion. Topics in recent symposia include ways social hierarchies and identities manifest themselves in our communities and discussions about the intersection of race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, age, religion, body size, ability, mental illness, and class.

Topics for the Symposium may be proposed by any member of the UAS community and are selected with a goal of sharing diverse perspectives and experiences. The one-day Symposium is scheduled as a regular part of the university’s fall calendar; most classes do not meet on the scheduled day to allow broad participation by students, faculty, staff, and community members.

While the Symposium will be held on the UAS Juneau campus, keynote speeches and a selection of breakout sessions will be available live via distance. Details will be added when available.

 

Symposium Program

View Program

Schedule

Date / TimeEventLocation
8:15–8:30 a.m.Continental BreakfastSpike's Cafe
8:30–8:45 a.m.Aak’w Kwaan WelcomeEgan Library
8:45–9:00 a.m.Event WelcomeEgan Library
9:00–9:50 a.m.Opening KeynoteEgan Library
10:00–10:50 a.m.Breakout Session 12nd Floor Egan Building Classrooms
11:00–11:50 a.m.Breakout Session 22nd Floor Egan Building Classrooms
12:00–12:50 p.m.Lunch (Catered)Lakeside Grill
1:00–1:50 p.m.Afternoon KeynoteEgan Library
2:00–2:50 p.m.Breakout Session 32nd Floor Egan Building Classrooms
3:00–3:50 p.m.Breakout Session 42nd Floor Egan Building Classrooms
4:00–4:50 p.m.Breakout Session 52nd Floor Egan Building Classrooms
5:00–5:45 p.m.Dinner (Catered)Lakeside Grill
5:45–6:00 p.m.Juneau Pride Chorus PerfomanceEgan Library
6–6:50 p.m.Evening KeynoteEgan Library

Keynote Speakers

UAS Staff and Faculty Panel

Join us in the morning for a keynote panel filled with UAS Faculty and Staff! A cross section of UAS employees will kick off the day discussing the ways that the concepts of Power and Privilege have affected their lives. Learn with us as we explore how identity, privilege, and power interact. Speakers will share experiences with attendees that highlight the ways that Power and Privilege can be used to empower communities, make change, and overcome obstacles.

Panelists:

  • Chancellor Richard A. Caulfield, Ph.D.
  • Ronalda Cadiente-Brown, M.A., Assistant Dean, Multicultural and Indigenous Education
  • Lance (X̱’unei) A Twitchell, M.F.A., Associate Professor of Alaska Native Languages
  • Wayne Price, Associate Professor of Northwest Coast Arts
  • Jennifer Sweitzer, Financial Aid Advisor

Oscar Vazquez, Veteran, DREAMer, STEM LeaderOscar Vazquez, Veteran, DREAMer, STEM leader

The Power and Privilege Symposium is partnering with UAS’s One Campus, One Book program to feature Oscar Vazquez, the subject of this year’s common read, Spare Parts. Oscar will be featured at the afternoon keynote.

Like many DREAMers, Oscar Vazquez came to the United States as a child in search of a better life. He excelled as a STEM student at Carl Hayden High School and led an unlikely and inspiring story of a group of under-resourced Hispanic high school students who took on an MIT team in an underwater robotics competition.  But without legal status after graduating college, he couldn’t secure a job to provide for his new wife and newborn child.

He returned to Mexico to apply for a visa, and with help from Sen. Dick Durbin, who spoke from the Senate Floor about Oscar’s case, he was granted a green card in August 2010. Six months later, Oscar enlisted in the Army to serve the country he loves and calls home. Oscar served one tour in Afghanistan and is now a proud U.S. citizen. He is a passionate advocate on behalf on expanding STEM opportunities for Latino and other underrepresented youth.

Judy and Dennis Shepard, Matthew Shepard Foundation

Judy and Dennis Shepard, Matthew Shepard Foundation

Judy and Dennis Shepard, the parents of Matthew Shepard and founders of the Matthew Shepard Foundation, are presenting for their first time in Alaska at the evening keynote of the Power and Privilege Symposium, 20 years after the beating that led to the death of Matthew Shepard in Laramie, Wyoming in 1998.

Following Matthew’s death, the Shepards began sharing their son’s story and their experience as the family of a hate crime victim. The Shepards work to create more compassion within communities and a stronger appreciation of diversity, with an emphasis on the LGBTQ+ community.

Through their work with the Matthew Shepard Foundation, the Shepards have helped provide a voice and support for LGBT youth across the country, assisted with the United State’s with creating and passing the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act in 2009, and create dialogue within communities about hate and acceptance.

 

Breakout Sessions

Breakout sessions have been selected and will soon be available on this website.

The following sessions were live streamed and recorded at the 2018 event. View them online at the University's Youtube Account.

Watch a Session

Opening Keynote: Faculty and Staff Panel: Resiliency in a Time of Change

Richard A. Caulfield, Ph.D., Chancellor
Ronalda Cadiente-Brown, M.A., Assistant Dean, Multicultural and Indigenous Education
Lance (X̱’unei) A Twitchell, M.F.A., Associate Professor of Alaska Native Languages
Wayne Price, Associate Professor of Northwest Coast Arts
Jennifer Sweitzer, Financial Aid Advisor

9:00 AM - 9:50 AM - Egan Library, First Floor

Join us in the morning for a keynote panel filled with UAS Faculty and Staff! A cross section of UAS employees will kick off the day discussing the ways that the concepts of Power and Privilege have affected their lives. Learn with us as we explore how identity, privilege, and power interact. Speakers will share experiences with attendees that highlight the ways that Power and Privilege can be used to empower communities, make change, and overcome obstacles.


Poverty and Health: Deconstructing the Physical and Mental Impacts On Impoverished Families in the U.S.

India Busby, Undergraduate Student
Faculty Sponsor: Lora Vess, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Social Sciences

10:00 AM - 10:50 AM - Egan Lecture Hall  (Egan 112)

One child in seven will be born into poverty in the United States. Stressful events early in life can create physical and mental health problems in both childhood and adulthood. To understand the mental and physical health issues experienced by those in poverty, it is critical to look at factors such as living environment, racism, health care access, food insecurity, domestic violence, and neighborhood violence. This presentation will examine the relationship between poverty and health, understanding just how much poverty takes a toll on an individual, and will propose ways to address these health injustices. 


Poetics and Politics of Place

Khrystl Brouillette-Janes, Undergraduate Student
Eli Faymonville, Undergraduate Student
Morgan Johnson, Undergraduate Student
Shelby Clark, Undergraduate Student
Eva Bingham, Undergraduate Student
Faculty Sponsor: Richard Simpson, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Humanities, Geography and Environmental Studies BA Coordinator 

10:00 AM - 10:50 AM - Glacier View Room (Egan 221)

The panel will be of works in progress by students in GEOG 390 Critical Geography. We will present summaries of our midterm projects, which deal with topics/issues such as: space vs place, time-space compression, power-geometry, progressive sense of place, modes of production, globalization. All of these concepts have specific applications to a variety of topics in Juneau and across the globe. This terminology looks at issues, like power and privilege, through a lens of geography. Cultural and World Regional Geography are unique and useful methods for discussing and providing solutions for a vast array of societal issues. Our panel would hope to bring awareness to the geographic method of thinking and problem solving through specific examples and applications we would present in the scope of Power and Privilege. 


Men Ending Violence

Lily Larson, AWARE
Richard Cole, AWARE
Ati Nasaiah, AWARE

11:00 AM - 11:50 AM - Egan Lecture Hall  (Egan 112)

Explore men's role in the #metoo movement and unpack concepts around patriarchy, toxic masculinity, accountability and alliship.  Come and learn ways men are finding meaningful roles in solving the problems of gendered based violence in an effort to put an end to men's violence against women. 


Big Tobacco: Killing People When They’re Down

Kristin Cox, Tobacco Prevention  and Control Coordinator for JAMHI Health and Wellness
Alexis Cram, AmeriCorps Volunteer with SEARHC’s Front Street Clinic

11:00 AM - 11:50 AM - Glacier View Room (Egan 221)

Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in Alaska and worldwide. The impact of tobacco use has a disproportionate effect on low income communities, communities of color, minorities, youth and the LGBTQ community. Tobacco use is almost entirely responsible for the dramatic health disparities (10-25 years in some communities) found in people living with mental illness, substance use disorder and low income. Poverty causes people to smoke and smoking makes people poor. 

Smoking is a pediatric epidemic which is socially transmitted and terminal. The tobacco industry’s business model is dependent on youth becoming addicted.  


Afternoon Keynote: La Vida Robot, STEM, and Immigration

Oscar Vasquez, Veteran, Mechanical Engineer

1:00 PM - 1:50 PM - Egan Library, First Floor

Immigrating to the US as a child was not something Oscar Vazquez had control over.  He came from a small town in Mexico where he knew everyone, could play safely in the streets, and was comfortable there.  It wasn’t until his high school friends started to get driver licenses, cars and jobs that Vazquez realized what it meant to be undocumented. It was then that he became aware of what was expected of him after graduation: to work in construction, the fields, or jobs no-one else wanted. Despite the low expectations set for him and against all odds, Vazquez succeeded. Vazquez believes he is living the American dream and thinks back humbly on the sacrifices his parents made to get him where he is today.  In this keynote Vazquez will discuss how he has navigated this conflicted landscape of citizenship and privilege and the work he's doing today to eliminate barriers and build pathways to opportunity for future generations of new Americans.  

Presenter Biography:

Like many DREAMers, Oscar’s family brought him to the United States as a child in search of a better life.  From age 12 when he moved from Mexico to Phoenix, Arizona, where Oscar excelled in the classroom. At Carl Hayden High School he was a member of the underwater robotics team, which won a national championship in 2004. That opportunity led to a college education in the STEM field, earning a B.S.E in mechanical engineering from Arizona State University in May 2009. Without U.S. citizenship, he couldn’t secure a job to provide for his new wife and newborn child.  He returned to Mexico to apply for a visa and legalize his status but was denied twice. With the help from Sen. Dick Durbin, who spoke from the Senate Floor about Oscar’s case, he was granted a visa in August 2010.  Six months later, Oscar enlisted in the Army and served one tour in Afghanistan. He now works for Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railways as a business analyst in an app development team.


Powerful and Privileged: The Identity Crisis of Mountain Culture

Forest Wagner, M.A., Assistant Professor of Outdoor Studies

2:00 PM - 2:50 PM - Egan Lecture Hall  (Egan 112)

Mountain culture and its associated environmental canon are at a historical moment.  The humanistic ideas of individualism and freedom of expression that mountain culture historically represented are now opaque, clouded by commercialization, consumerism and popularity.   The mountain sports themselves are gendered heavily masculine in imagery and language, participants are generally Caucasian, and the travel or tourism viewed as the culture's ultimate expression is itself easily critiqued as neo-colonial. Participation in mountain culture is a position of socioeconomic privilege.  Risk-taking is valued above all.  The talk considers bankrupt components of the cliched "freedom of the hills"  and reckons egalitarian ways forward.

Why and how are these communities targeted? How do policies work to combat predatory industry interests and practices and help to create greater health equity?


When classics make you cringe: How today's theatres are confronting cultural change (or not)

Julie Coppens, Director of Outreach and Engagement, Perseverance Theatre

2:00 PM - 2:50 PM - Glacier View Room (Egan 221)

What makes a play or musical a "classic"? What are the disqualifiers, in 2018? We'll look at some titles that theatre artists and audiences have embraced for decades, even centuries -- William Shakespeare remains the most-produced playwright by far on American stages -- and unpack some of their problems, from our contemporary perspective: rampant racism, sexism, heteronormativity, and other elements that are getting harder and harder for us to shrug off by saying, "...but it's a masterpiece!" It's not a new struggle; as a Gen Xer, I came of age during the Culture Wars of the 1990s, when many pillars of the repertory were being attacked as "politically incorrect." We'll consider how things are different now, and how companies like Perseverance Theatre are responding -- in the plays they choose and how they present them. 


The Truth About Place: A Critique on Travel Writing

Rosie Ainza, Undergraduate Student
Faculty Sponsor: Emily Wall, M.F.A., Associate Professor of English

3:00 PM - 3:50 PM - Egan Lecture Hall  (Egan 112)

This session will explore the genre of travel writing as a mode of representation. Often, entrenched attitudes of coloniality are present in this genre, underscored by the the perpetuation of exploitation and the transmission of ideological assimilation. During this session, clear insight into the subjective ethnography of travel writing will be provided. A subsequent discussion will explore methods of resisting coloniality and will include spoken word poetry written by the presenter. This poetry will highlight intersubjective reciprocity via stories and experiences united through shared heritage. In order to take the audience on a visual exploration of this critique, specific filmic and photographic examples will be provided. The session will conclude with an overview and call to identify the colonizer in our own authorship so that we may recognize the revolutionary potential of this genre and reach a deeper truth about how we move about the world.


Sex Education Is...

Alyson Currey, Legislative Liaison, Planned Parenthood Votes Northwest & Hawaii 
Andria Budbill, Community Outreach Educator & Teen Council Facilitator, Planned Parenthood

3:00 PM - 3:50 PM - Glacier View Room (Egan 221)

What do you think of when you hear "sex ed?" What would the world look like if everyone got the sex education they need and want? At Planned Parenthood, we believe sex education is essential to young people’s health, relationships, and life goals. Young people deserve to have the information, resources, and skills they need to protect their health and build their future — without shame or judgment. Unfortunately, fewer young people than ever are getting any sex education at all, or they’re getting ineffective abstinence-only-until-marriage programs, despite overwhelming public support for sex education in schools. In Alaska, there currently are no sex education standards in schools and, as a result of a 2016 law, sex education is now the most scrutinized school subject. Join us for a conversation about what sex education is, does, and what actions people can take to expand access to sex education and support healthy youth.


The Architecture of Inclusive Societies

Zane Jones, MRV Architects
4:00 PM - 4:50 PM - Egan Lecture Hall  (Egan 112)

Architects and Urban Planners have a long history of designing spaces for public use, however, these spaces have not always been inclusive or safe for everyone.  Seeing blind spots in the design of public space due to systems-based inequalities has dramatically improved due to recent policies and building codes. The American With Disabilities Act (ADA) transformed how public spaces are designed, leading to dramatic shifts of who society defines as including in “the public”.  Future policies and codes are adapting to include new groups and needs into public space. Historic preservationists are re-telling histories of oppressed cultures. Current topics such as controversial monuments, religious business rights, gender in public space and many more are evolving and need to be addressed by a diverse array of designers that understand human and civil rights. Changing demographics in architecture, design and historic preservation are leading these important systems-based changes.


Decentering Europe: Student Critical Meditations on Indigeneity and Interdisciplinarity 

Sol Neely, Ph.D., Associate Professor of English
Claire Hegelson, Undergraduate Student
Joe Greenough, Undergraduate Student
Rae Romberg, Undergraduate Student
Kevin Jones, Undergraduate Student
Cass Chase, Undergraduate Student
PK Woo, Undergraduate Student
Clark Bolanos, Undergraduate Student

4:00 PM - 4:50 PM - Glacier View Room (Egan 221)

The United Nations’ “Economic and Social Council” published, in 1994, its “Principles and Guidelines for the Protection of the Heritage of Indigenous Peoples.” In it, they write, “The effective protection of the heritage of the indigenous peoples of the world benefits all humanity. Cultural diversity is essential to the adaptability and creativity of the human species as a whole.” This panel begins by taking the latter part of this principle seriously, by appealing to Indigenous knowledge as central to healing a world scared by colonialism, capitalism, and perpetual war. The panel is composed of students enrolled in Prof. Sol Neely’s HUM 200 class, which works to develop a theory of interdisciplinary practice that begins with respect for what Ernestine Hayes calls “Indigenous intellectual authority.” Students will deliver short critical and personal meditations on their experience with the questions and texts addressed during our semester’s meditation on the value of interdisciplinarity and indigeneity. Topics will include respect as foundational to interdisciplinary inquiry, indigenous knowledges and science, interventions within microtechnologies of power, fostering a polyhistorical mind, and more. 

2017 Event

The Symmposium Program for 2017, which includes the schedule, keynote speakers, and breakout session details is available for download.

Keynotes and Recorded Sessions

All keynotes as well as select breakout sessions are available for viewing online. See the program (above) for a full descriptions.

Event Welcome and Opening Keynote

Afternoon and Evening Keynotes

Breakout Sessions in the Egan Lecture Hall

Breakout Sessions in the Glacier View Room

Sponsors:

We would like to thank our generous event sponsors of the 2017 event:

  • UAS First Year Experience 
  • UAS Student Activities
  • UAS Student Government

2016 Event

The program, which includes the schedule, keynote speakers, and breakout session details, is available for download.

Keynotes and Recorded Sessions

All keynotes as well as select breakout sessions are available for viewing online. A list of available videos:

  • Áakʼw Ḵwáan Welcome with Marie Olson & Liana Wallace 
  • Opening Keynote - Manic Depression in America with Andrew James Archer, MSW, LCSW
  • Session 1 - Stereotyping and its Effects in Evaluative and Performance Domains with Amanda Sesko, Ph.D; Assistant Professor of Psychology, UAS
  • Session 2 - Rape Culture: Hiding in Plain Sight with Mandy O'Neal Cole, Deputy Director, AWARE Afternoon Keynote - Dancing Soverenignty: Reclaiming the Grease Trail Through Movement and Song with Mique'l Dangeli
  • Session 3 - How Anthologies Empower Communities by Weaving Literature with Politics with Martha Amore, Professor, UAA
  • Session 4 - Examining Climate Change through a Lens of Power & Privilege with a panel of UAS faculty, staff, and student representatives
  • Session 5 - The Act of Dreaming: Undocumented Students in the United States with Christina Gómez, Professor of Liberal Arts and Director of Diversity and Inclusion, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
  • Evening Keynote - Gender Transition: A Personal Change for One or a Paradigm Shift for Everyone? with Aidan Key

Sponsors

We would like to thank our generous event sponsors of the 2016 event:

  • UAS First Year Experience 
  • UAS Student Activities
  • UAS Native & Rural Student Center
  • UAS Counseling
  • SEAGLA
  • NAMI

Planning Committee Members

UAS Faculty

  • Andrea Haugen
  • Sol Neely

UAS Staff

  • Nathan Bodenstadt
  • Juliette Lowery
  • Eric Scott
  • Margie Thomson

UAS Students

  • Ele Ruchti
  • Daniel MacDonald