The humanities offer crucial tools and perspectives for addressing pressing issues of civic life. Now more than ever, we need these humanities tools to advance local and national conversations about our history, our identities, and our common future. With this charge in mind, UMBC’s Dresher Center for the Humanities and College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences (CAHSS) introduce the Inclusion Imperative, a major five-year initiative to promote diversity and inclusive excellence in the humanities, made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
UMBC, in partnership with Bowie State University, Coppin State University, and Howard University, will cultivate a regional network of scholars, who are committed to diversity and inclusion in the humanities. These fundamental partnerships will guide the development and implementation of the Inclusion Imperative’s three programs: the Diversity Teaching Network in the Humanities, the Visiting Faculty Fellowship Program, and the Humanities Teaching Labs. Through these programs, the Inclusion Imperative will support and expand community-engaged humanities research, teaching, and learning focused on issues of equity, inclusion, and justice.
Building a Regional Network of Humanities Scholars
Beginning in fall 2017, collaborators from the four universities will start to build a vibrant, supportive community of humanities faculty through a series of activities to be held on the partners’ campuses. These foundational partnerships will guide the development and implementation of a regional Diversity Teaching Network in the Humanities. Over the next four years, the Diversity Teaching Network will benefit from the interdisciplinary exchange of ideas from interested faculty, scholars, and graduate students. Participating scholars will meet regularly to share knowledge across disciplines and draw on connections to colleagues with a broad range of perspectives, resources, and experiences.
Expanding Our Impact (Years 2-5)
The strong relationships developed in the Diversity Teaching Network will be essential to the success of the Visiting Faculty Fellowship Program and the Humanities Teaching Labs. Starting in fall 2017, faculty from colleges and universities in the region will be invited to submit applications to join UMBC and the Dresher Center for a semester or year as visiting fellows. While in residence, fellows will exchange ideas and perspectives in research and teaching collaborations with UMBC faculty, and participate in the Dresher Center’s scholarly programs. The Humanities Teaching Labs will introduce fellows and UMBC faculty and students to new media tools and methods for community-engaged humanities teaching and learning experiences.