Alumnae Diversity & Inclusion Committee
Community Conversations on Race: July 1, 8, and 15 from 7 - 8:30 p.m.
July 1: “It’s Where We Live: An Examination of Structural Racism,” an interactive lecture and conversation led by Dr. Marcia Chatelain
July 8: "The Impact and Implications of Microaggressions" with Rachel Jones '08
This alumnae event will highlight what microaggressions are, the ideologies that they uphold, and their harmful impact on BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color). During this session, participants will:
- examine examples of microaggressions and their different ways of manifesting (at school, among friends, at work, within the consumer industry, etc.)
- reflect on the impact of microaggressions on BIPOC
- brainstorm various ways of addressing and responding to microaggressions in a manner that fosters healing and accountability
- identify action steps for when you are a witness to a microaggression and when microaggressions are dismissed or denied
Rachel has dedicated her career to combating educational inequity and supporting the leadership development of youth of color. In each of the non-profit positions she has held, Rachel has coached educators and organizational leaders to incorporate antiracist practices within management, student programming, partnership cultivation, fundraising, and strategic planning efforts.
July 15: Racial Allyship & Advocacy: An Alumnae Panel Discussion
Details to follow
We are honored to serve as co-chairs of the Alumnae Diversity and Inclusion Committee. Our Committee was created after the initial History of Enslaved People Project presentation in the Fall of 2018. We were all drawn to the cause with the intent to empower our diverse Visitation alumnae.
Our first task as we gathered in January 2019 was to formulate our mission: to ensure that all Visitation alumnae feel connected to the school community long after graduation, regardless of race, nationality, socio-economic status, religion, sexual orientation, and/or identity.
Some of the most impactful events have been the “Coffee and Conversation” events. In May of 2019, we hosted about 40 alumnae of varying ages, races, and sexual identities. Our goal was to gather insight as to how our committee could better serve our alumnae community. We received wonderful suggestions and input from many alums who had intentionally distanced themselves from the school. This past September, we hosted "Facing Race--Past, Present, and Future," our second “Coffee and Conversation” event led by Katrina Fludd ’04, which featured the first African American graduate of Visi, Anne Williams ’68. This event provided an opportunity for alumnae to share very personal stories from their time on campus. Tears were shed, hugs were shared, and bonds were formed.
We have co-sponsored events such as “Faith, Witness, & Dialogue in Polarizing Times” with Visitation parent Kim Daniels, the Hesburgh film screening and discussion with production assistant Moira Hamilton ‘13, and a visit to the African American History Museum for about 40 alumnae. We have also furthered our mission by discussing various books and articles addressing topics of diversity and inclusion during our monthly committee meetings.
Moving forward, we hope to engage with more alumnae in meaningful ways. We would like to continue with our “Coffee and Conversations” series, but also add new avenues for alumnae to connect with each other and Visitation as a whole. We ask that you share any ideas for events, workshops, and speakers that can advance our cause. Another way you can help is to become involved with the Alumnae Diversity and Inclusion Committee. We meet the third Wednesday of every month in the Lalor House at 6:30 p.m. If you cannot join in person, we utilize video conferencing so that alumnae from across the country can join. We hope that you will consider becoming a part of our community!
Leena Moore-Donaldson '93, Sidonie Becton ’07 and Margaret “Mimi” Cekuta ’08