As indicated in this email from AAAS, the grassroots organization #shutdownstem has organized a nation-wide event this Wednesday, June 10th. This event urges all STEM community members in academia to stop business as usual during this unprecedented moment and commit to antiracist practices.
Amherst Astronomy faculty member Kate Follette has canceled the usual meetings and work with her ten students for Wednesday, and instead worked with members of her group to put together this plan to help her group discuss anti-Black racism in our country and in academia and STEM specifically. She has generously shared the document, which includes a variety of resources for us in STEM to advance our anti-racist education, with all STEM faculty supervising summer researchers at Amherst College, and has made it completely accessible to anyone. Her plan includes an exercise drawn from this workshop on Race-Privilege from the Bonner Curriculum.
For Amherst-specific resources from Being Human in STEM students, excerpts from the statements from the STEM departments after the 2015 Amherst Uprising sit-in are available here, the results of interviews with >40 students about their Amherst STEM experiences in 2016 here, collections of ~40 annotated readings on STEM and diversity here, and case study #3 in the link here is a STEM-specific scenario. One of this spring's HSTEM projects was developing a workshop series centered around experiences in STEM at Amherst and what the students learned in HSTEM that they felt could be addressed to enhance inclusion in STEM. Although we haven’t yet updated www.beinghumaninstem.com with the materials from this spring’s HSTEM class, here is the draft of their HSTEM workshop proposal, and the collection of HSTEM student work as a Zine.
We encourage everyone to join the Follette lab, HSTEM students, staff and faculty, and STEM community members everyone in committing to take Wednesday, June 10th to consider how we will change ourselves as individuals, our departments, our disciplines, and our countries to fight racism every single day.
Photo credit: www.caribbeannationalweekly.com/cnw-tv/talkup/talkup-how-did-the-killing-of-george-floyd-make-you-feel/attachment/george-floyd-mural/
Being Human in STEM (HSTEM) is a growing community of students, staff, and faculty in Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics that fosters inclusion and equity in STEM. HSTEM originated in the aftermath of the student-led Amherst Uprising sit-in at Amherst College on November 12th, 2015. The student organizers were inspired to speak out and show solidarity with student protesters at University of Missouri and Yale University protesting incidents of racial disrimination on their campuses. These students were carrying on the important national conversation sparked by police brutality against black communities encapsulated by the Black Lives Matter Movement.
Today and every day, HSTEM stands in solidarity with the Black community. Silence about racism perpetuated on Black and Brown communities by the police and institutions everywhere is complicit with oppression. We honor George Floyd and remember everyone that came before him. We will continue to lead the STEM community in fighting for action and accountability on higher education campuses and beyond. Visit www.beinghumaninstem.com for more information and resources, and https://500womenscientists.org/updates/2020/6/1/take-action to learn about specific actions to take in support of #BlackLivesMatter.