Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Radical Empathy Workshop, November 17, 2020

Workshop Description

Structural racism has impacted the lives of African Americans in the United States since before the country's founding. Although the country has made some progress towards a more equal society, political developments in the 21st century have shown that deep divides remain. The persistence of inequality is an indicator of the stubborn resilience of the institutions that maintain white supremacy. To bridge our divides, renowned political scientist Terri Givens calls for 'radical empathy' - moving beyond an understanding of others' lives and pain to understand the origins of our biases, including internalized oppression. Deftly weaving together her own experiences with the political, she offers practical steps to call out racism and bring about radical social change.

Instructor Bio

terri headshot
Dr. Terri Givens

CEO, The Center for Higher Education Leadership

Terri E. Givens is a CEO/Founder, Political Scientist, and consultant to educational technology companies and educational institutions. In February of 2019, she founded The Center for Higher Education Leadership, a portal for professional development for higher education administrators. She was the Provost of Menlo College from July 2015 to June 2018. She has conducted numerous workshops on diversity and inclusion at U.S. and Canadian universities, including University of Oregon, University of Georgia, University of Alabama, Concordia University (Montreal), University of Alberta, and has worked with the American Political Science Association for over 15 years on various diversity initiatives in the profession. She has taken part in equality conferences held by the European Union, as well as in Germany, France and the UK.

From the Fall of 2003 until the Spring of 2015 she was a Professor in the Government Department at the University of Texas at Austin where she also served as Vice Provost for International Activities and Undergraduate Curriculum from 2006 to 2009, Director of the Robert S. Strauss Center’s European Union Center of Excellence, and Co-Director of the Longhorn Scholars Program. She founded and directed the Center for European Studies and the France-UT Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies from 2004-2006. She was a faculty member in the Department of Political Science at the University of Washington from 1999 to 2003. She received her Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles, and her B.A. from Stanford University.

She is the author/editor of several books on immigration policy, European politics, and security, including Voting Radical Right in Western Europe, Immigration Policy and Security, and Immigrant Politics: Race and Representation in Western Europe. Her most recent book is Legislating Equality: The Politics of Antidiscrimination Policy in Europe (Oxford University Press, May 2014). Her textbook, Immigration in the 21 st Century was published in May of 2020 (Routledge).

Her most recent book used as the basis for this workshop is Radical Empathy: Finding a Path to Bridging Racial Divides is scheduled for publication in February 2021 (A free PDF of the text will be provided for this course). A popular speaker, blogger, and social media enthusiast, Terri is very active in the community as a member of several nonprofit boards and is a fitness enthusiast.

Workshop Text
Radical Empathy: Finding a Path to Bridging Racial Divides

 (A free PDF of this text will be provided for this workshop)

Course Outcomes

  • Participants will learn about and gain a better understanding of critical terms like implicit bias, structural bias, and internalized oppression.
  • Participants will learn how to use their own life stories and those of their colleagues to practice empathy
  • Participants will learn to develop their own strategies for taking anti-racist actions and create change in their own lives and in their communities. 

Overview of the Workshop

Part 1 – Introduction and the power of stories (1 hour)

Terri leads off - using her story as the basis for a discussion and describing radical empathy

  1. Willingness to be vulnerable
  2. Becoming grounded in who you are
  3. Opening yourself to the experiences of others
  4. Practicing empathy
  5. Taking action
  6. Creating change 

Part 2 Practicing Empathy (1 hour)

  • Discussion
  • Activity - telling our stories

Part 3 – Wrapping up (30 minutes)

  • Inclusive Leadership and Creating Change
  • Assessment