Designing Transformative Multicultural Initiatives
Theoretical Foundations, Practical Applications, and Facilitator Considerations

Edited by Sherry K. Watt
Foreword by Marybeth Gasman
Paper: 978 1 62036 060 6 / $29.95
Published: June 2015  

Cloth: 978 1 62036 059 0 / $95.00
Published: June 2015  

Lib E-Book: 978 1 62036 061 3 / $95.00  
About Library E-Book

Published: July 2015  

E-Book: 978 1 62036 062 0 / $23.99
Published: July 2015  

Publisher: Stylus Publishing
270 pp., 6" x 9"
figures & tables
Higher education is facing a perfect storm as it contends with changing demographics, shrinking budgets and concerns about access and cost, while underrepresented groups – both in faculty ranks and students – are voicing dissatisfaction with campus climate and demanding changes to structural inequities.

This book argues that, to address the inexorable changes ahead, colleges and universities need both to centralize the value of diversity and inclusion and employ a set of strategies that are enacted at all levels of their institutions. It argues that individual and institutional change efforts can only be achieved by implementing “diversity as a value” – that is embracing social change efforts as central and additive rather than episodic and required – and provides the research and theoretical frameworks to support this approach, as well as tools and examples of practice that accomplish change.

The contributors to this book identify the elements that drive successful multicultural initiatives and that strengthen the effectiveness of campus efforts to dismantle systemic oppression, as well as the individual and organization skills needed to manage difference effectively. Among these is developing the capacity of administrators, faculty and student affairs professionals as conscious scholar practitioners to sensitively manage conflicts on campus, deconstruct challenging structures and reconstruct the environment intentionally to include in respectful ways experiences of historically marginalized groups and non-dominant ways of being in the world.

The books’ focus on developing capacities for multicultural competence aligns with higher education’s increasing emphasis on civic engagement and institutional goals promote skills to interact in meaningful and responsible ways around difference, whether of people, ideas or identities.

Designing Transformative Multicultural Initiatives provides guiding principles and practical strategies to successfully transform higher education to become fully inclusive and advance the success of all constituents and stakeholders.

Table of Contents:



Part One: Guiding Principles for Transformative Multicultural Initiatives (What are some useful guiding principles that help conscious scholar practitioners design transformative multicultural initiatives?)

1) Multicultural Initiatives as a Practice of Freedom—Sherry K. Watt
2) Authentic, Action-Oriented Framing for Environmental Shifts (AAFES) Method—Sherry K. Watt
3) Privilege Identity Exploration (PIE) Model Revisited: Strengthening Skills for Engaging Difference—Sherry K. Watt

Part Two: Designing Multicultural Initiatives: A How to Manual (What techniques do conscious scholar practitioners use to develop a multicultural initiative that will lead to a successful outcome?)

4) Multicultural Initiatives as Bridges: Structures Necessary for Successful Facilitation—Cindy Ann Kilgo and Richard Barajas
5) In Pursuit of a Strong, Clear Vision: Initiating and Sustaining Multicultural Change in Higher Education Organizations—Lacretia Johnson Flash
6) Sharing Power and Privilege through the Scholarly Practice of Assessment—Wayne Jacobson

Part Three: Scholarly Examples of Multicultural Initiatives in Teaching, Higher Education Administration, and Student Affairs Practice (What are examples of the varying types of multicultural initiatives in higher education and student affairs?)

7) Teaching Contemporary Leadership: Advancing Students’ Capacities to Engage
With Difference—John P. Dugan and Daviree Velázquez
8) Aligning Actions With Core Values: Reflections of a Chief Diversity Officer and National Science Foundation ADVANCE Director on Advancing Faculty Diversity—Paulette Granberry Russell and Melissa McDaniels
9) Creating Inclusive Organizations: One Student Affairs Division’s Efforts to Create Sustainable, Systemic Change—Kathy Obear and Shelly Kerr
10) Dialogue Matters: Applying Critical Race Theory to Conversations About Race—Sherri Edvalson Erkel
11) Confronting Systems of Privilege and Power Through Classroom Discussion: Uses of Power—
Bridget Turner Kelly and Joy Gaston Gayles
12) The Transformational Potential of Academic Affairs and Student Affairs Partnerships for Enacting Multicultural Initiatives—Lucy A. LePeau

Part Four: Conscious Scholar Practitioners' Reflections on Identity, Power, and Privilege
(How do conscious scholar practitioners face the challenges within the convergence of identity, power, and privilege that are inherent to multicultural initiatives and campus organizational change?)

13) Politics of Intersecting Identities—John A. Mueller and Craig S. Pickett
14) Toxic Environments: Perseverance in the Face of Resistance—Mary F. Howard-Hamilton
15) Facing the Proverbial Lion of Racism—Jodi L. Linley and Sherry K. Watt
16) The Art of Reflective Teaching—Ellen E. Fairchild
17) Daring Greatly: A Reflective Critique of the Authentic, Action-Oriented Framing for Environmental Shifts (AAFES) Method—Tracy Robinson-Wood and Sherry K. Watt

About the Editor and Contributors


Sample - Introduction

Reviews & Endorsements:
"Sherry K. Watt has assembled talented "conscious scholar practitioners" to address the growing need to design university policies, programming, and classroom pedagogies that address difference. This book addresses both the theoretical and practical aspects of multicultural teaching. As the preferred term "conscious scholar practitioners" suggests, both aspects are vital for developing multicultural policies and teaching practices.

For those scholars who want to deepen and center difference in their classroom and across their university this book strikes me as incredibly valuable. For departments of theology and religious studies seeking to form stronger links with other departments, staff members, and administrators, this volume can provide a common vocabulary and methodology."
- Reflective Teaching (Wabash Center)
"Dr. Watt and her talented cast of authors dissolve dualities between privilege and oppression, person and institution, and defensiveness and empathy to offer liberatory strategies in the spirit of Friere and hooks that offer real hope for realizing higher education’s democratic mission. Rooted in the conceptual (like the AAFES Method and Privilege Identity Exploration Model), Designing Transformative Multicultural Initiatives provides an urgently needed pragmatic map for addressing the stubborn realities confronting college campuses around equity and justice. It is truly an outstanding contribution to the field."
- Tracy L. Davis, Ph.D.,Professor and College Student Personnel Program Coordinator, Director, Center for the Study of Masculinities & Men’s Development , Educational and Interdisciplinary Studies, Western Illinois University