THE EXEMPLARY PROGRAM AWARD
“Our work is about the “We” not the “I”
In fall of 2019, ASCCC plenary session delegates debated and adopted a series of resolutions that updated sections of the ASCCC Rules—and in one case, its bylaws—that pertain to the elections process for members of the ASCCC Executive Committee. The order in which representative positions are elected has been reversed. Nominations from the floor will not be called for except in the case of positions for which no one has accepted a nomination.
(In 2013, the Academic Senate Executive Committee approved a project to record and preserve the history of the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges. The April 2017 Rostrum contains an article that explains the intent and structure of this project. The following article was written as an aspect of the history project and is the first in a series of planned articles remembering individuals who made outstanding contributions to the work of the ASCCC.)
Most people would agree that communication brings people together and, with empathy and an open mind, can provide the foundation for understanding and growth. The thought of moving into action and beyond words is exciting: to change a dominant culture to one more inclusive of all diverse voices, one that validates and empowers those often silenced and marginalized. Women, for example, have been trailblazing and fighting for equality and equity for centuries.
Academic Senate for California Community Colleges (ASCCC) Bylaws Article VI states, “Academic Senate caucuses are intended to serve as groups of independently organized faculty to meet, network, and deliberate collegially in order to form a collective voice on issues of common concern that caucus members feel are of vital importance to faculty and the success of students as they relate to academic and professional matters.” The caucus structure is a conscious effort by the ASCCC to establish a means within the organization to ensure all voices are heard.
As colleges celebrate the rise of diversity, equity, and inclusion awareness and programming across the California Community Colleges system, they must ask themselves why their diversity, equity, and inclusion work has done little to bridge the equity achievement gap. Diversity programming, which is largely the celebration and normalization of difference, does not address the root causes of the inequity embedded in the educational system (McNair, Bensimon, and Malcom-Piquex, 2020).
The 2020 ASCCC Part-Time Institute was held between January 23 and 25 at the Napa Valley Marriott Hotel and Spa. This institute was the fourth annual event, the last two being co-sponsored by the California Community Colleges’ Success Network (3CSN). Since its inaugural year, the institute has been paid in full for all attendees, the funds for the last two years having been provided by 3CSN. The theme of this year’s institute was “Affirming Our Voice.”
Note: The following article is not an official statement of the Academic Senate for California Community Colleges. The article is intended to engender discussion and consideration by local colleges.
An equitable system requires that students get what they need, when they need it. As Herbert Kohl stated, “Young people don’t care what you know until they know you care” (Easton-Brooks, 2019, p.45). Decades of research have shown that faculty, staff, and administrators must be armored with the practices to engage students in the classroom and outside of the classroom in meaningful ways. Dr. Jeff Duncan-Andrade (2020) articulates the three most effective practices: