Recent years have dramatized the urgency of achieving a world without racism. Racial terrorism, hate crimes, police and vigilante violence, scapegoating of immigrants, and policies rooted in colonialism, imperialism, enslavement, segregation, and exploitation are only a few examples of its manifestations. Another is the current backlash against efforts to work against these conditions or even discuss them. The stakes are high and the hour is late. Higher education must ensure that faculty and students will have opportunities to develop the awareness and skills necessary to meet these challenges.
To meet the urgency of this moment and building on our collective commitments to address these inequities and injustices, the Center for Antiracist Research (CAR), the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) and BU Diversity & Inclusion (BU D&I) have partnered to sponsor the Designing Antiracism Curricula (DAC) Fellowship Program. This Fellowship brings together a cohort of Boston University educators to develop or redesign undergraduate or graduate courses within their respective disciplines to thoughtfully engage antiracism curricula and pedagogical strategies (see Kishimoto, 2018, for a useful framework).
This fellowship program aims to:
- Create opportunities for faculty to design new courses or re-design existing courses that highlight and integrate antiracism frameworks, content, and perspectives
- Increase opportunities for students to engage with material that highlights antiracism frameworks and content
- Bring faculty together across disciplines and campuses to explore antiracism frameworks, discuss content for courses, and build a supportive teaching and learning community
How to Apply
The Call for Applications for the 2023-24 academic year will open on January 30, 2023. See below for general information about the application process.
|January 30, 2023
|Informational Session #1 (click to register)
|February 7, 2023, 1-2 pm
|Informational Session #2 (click to register)
|February 15, 2023, 2-3 pm
|March 24, 2023
|Application Review Period
|March 25-April 17, 2023
|April 18-24, 2023
All BU faculty, including lecturers, who design and teach stand-alone courses at the undergraduate or graduate level at BU are encouraged to apply regardless of discipline or field. Previous experience designing antiracism curricula is not required; we encourage faculty who are new to this work to apply!
- Participants will be required to attend monthly 90-minute meetings from September 2023 to May 2024 and will be expected to complete 5-10 hours of work between monthly meetings.
- Meetings will take place synchronously
- Participants will need to complete their curricula materials by the end of the program.
- Participants agree to share what they learn with the BU community and beyond.
Letter of Interest
Applicants must submit a letter of interest for designing a new antiracism course or significantly revising an existing course to include or increase antiracism content. The letter of interest should be no more than 1,000 words and include the following:
- Why you are applying for the Fellowship.
- Initial ideas for a new course (this may include a brief draft description of what you envision the course would look like, strategies for integrating alternative pedagogies, etc.) or significant revision of an existing course (those who intend to revise an existing course should include their reflection on why the course needs revision and their vision for possible changes).
- Describe ways in which you have demonstrated interest or engagement in antiracism or equity work outside of the classroom.
Letter of Support
As part of the application, you will be asked to upload an email or letter of support from your department head. The letter of support should include a commitment to, for example, offer the course in the future, integrate into curriculum, etc. This letter does not need to serve as a formal acceptance or approval of any courses developed through the Fellowship.
What is the DAC Fellowship Program?
The Designing Antiracism Curricula (DAC) Fellowship Program brings together Boston University educators to focus on the development of antiracism undergraduate and graduate courses. DAC fellows will have the opportunity to design or redesign their own courses in order to integrate antiracism frameworks and perspectives, while collaborating with colleagues in a supportive teaching and learning community.
Who is organizing the DAC Fellows program?
The DAC fellows program is organized by a core group comprised of Phillipe Copeland, Assistant Director of Narrative, Center for Antiracist Research (CAR) and Clinical Assistant Professor, School of Social Work; Priya Garg, Associate Dean for Medical Education at the Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics; Deb Breen, Director, Center for Teaching & Learning (CTL); Jean Otsuki, Associate Director, CTL; and Megan Segoshi, Manager of Faculty Diversity Initiatives, BU D&I. The core group will invite other faculty and students to provide input into reviewing applications as well as the design and/or delivery of the program. The group is supported by a communications team from BU D&I, CTL, and CAR.
When is the program running?
The fellowship program runs each academic year from September to May.
Who can apply?
All Boston University educators who are able to fulfil the goals of the DAC Fellowship program are eligible to apply. That is, applicants should demonstrate a commitment to the development of antiracism curricula, be able to confirm that their new or revised course has departmental or program support, and be prepared to share their work with colleagues within DAC and more broadly to cultivate and extend conversations about antiracism teaching.
When are applications due?
Applications for the DAC Fellowship Program are accepted annually from January through March for the upcoming academic year. Please see the latest application timeline above.
When will I find out if I will become part of the DAC Fellows cohort?
Participants in the DAC Fellows cohort will be notified by mid-May each year. Please see the latest application timeline above.
What are DAC Fellows expected to do?
Participants will be asked to commit to monthly meetings with their DAC colleagues to discuss readings, and share pedagogical approaches and ideas for developing or revising courses. In addition, there will be 5-10 hours of work outside of these meetings each month as fellows work on their own courses. Fellows will also be expected to share their knowledge and materials with a broader audience, both inside and beyond BU, as a way to extend and support ongoing conversations about antiracism teaching.
Is there any compensation offered?
Yes, a stipend of $1,500 for the year will be provided to each participant.
What do I need to do for the application?
The application will ask you to tell us about your interest in antiracism frameworks, including in teaching. We are also interested to find out about the course you would like to work on, either a new course that you would like to develop or a course that you are already teaching and would like to significantly revise. We will also need a letter from your department or program chair to indicate that your proposed revision/new course is already being offered or will be offered in the future. Finally, we are interested to hear how you might support the broader conversation about antiracism pedagogy, both within and beyond BU.
How will participants be selected?
The committee will select the DAC Fellows based on the application as well as a short interview.
How can I find out more about the application process?
You may reach out to Phillipe Copeland at email@example.com with your questions.
Meet the Current Fellows
Expand each section below to meet the inaugural cohort of thirteen DAC Fellows for the 2022-23 academic year and read about their goals for the DAC Fellowship Program. Fellows are listed in alphabetical order.
María Datel (she/ella)
I am looking forward to joining a community of educators across disciplines and continuing to learn about antiracist pedagogies while developing a 300-level Spanish course centered on indigenous perspectives, which are fundamental to our discussion of racism in Latin America. The colonial genocide was also an epistemicide, yet there are still 50 million indigenous peoples in Latin America whose knowledge production presents valuable alternatives to addressing contemporary issues, including climate change, food sovereignty, medical hegemony, and gender equity. I am grateful for the opportunity to explore this topic and connect with colleagues dedicated to furthering antiracist education.
Professor for Culture and Cuisine of the African Diaspora, Metropolitan College
Coming from a family of equity-focused educators who broke color barriers, it feels fitting that a higher education career focusing on antiracism would make my ancestors proud. With a background in vocational education, combining the knowledge of the body and mind with a lens of community and cooperation is at the forefront of my pedagogy. With this opportunity, my goals are to learn how antiracist techniques can be incorporated into the academic field and industry of gastronomy. In addition, I am grateful for the chance to gain more experience as an educator, be in the community and collaborate with other educators who pride themselves on the advancement of all people.
Ashley Davis, PhD, MSW
Through the fellowship, I will redesign a core course required of Master of Social Work students: SR 743 Social Work Research I. Historically and currently, research in the social sciences has been used as a tool to reinforce structural racism, which stands in opposition to the values of the social work profession. In this redesigned course, students will learn to consume and conduct research through an anti-racism lens. At each stage of the process, from forming questions to interpreting data, students will have opportunities to develop the knowledge and skills necessary to carry out research that promotes equity and empowerment.
Alexandra Dobie (she/her), LICSW, APHSW-C
Palliative care focuses on providing “whole person care” for those living with a serious illness, yet there continue to be barriers for patients — rooted in racism — to accessing and engaging in healthcare, including palliative care. I am interested in learning about and deconstructing how healthcare providers engage in clinical care of patients from an antiracist lens. I hope to empower healthcare providers to consider impacts of racism on patient care and how we might engage in antiracist practice in any clinical setting.
Institutions that historically center on the study and performance of Classical music have long struggled to avoid tokenism and make changes related to DEIA issues that are more than surface-level acknowledgement of voices outside of the established Western canon. Courses need to be centered around critically engaging with musics of the past and present, from and beyond the Western art music canon, in classrooms and performances and ensuring that the voices of underrepresented composers, styles, performers, and cultures are provided adequate agency and support via curricular and administrative changes as they sit at the School of Music table. Adopting these approaches is central to the continued vitality of the School of Music.
My goal is to transform WR 112, one of our foundational writing courses for multilingual students, which reaches over 600 international students each year in about 45 different sections. The opportunity this Fellowship provides comes at an exciting time for the Writing Program, which has just completed a focused search (the first of its kind in CAS), bringing on board five full-time lecturers in Fall 2022 with demonstrated expertise in antiracism and/or linguistic justice. Our entire program is thinking deeply about what it means to teach writing at BU through these twin lenses, and revising WR 112 is a key step in that process.
Melisa L. Osborne, PhD
Through the DAC Fellowship, I aim to redesign a core class in the Master’s Program in Bioinformatics—Biochemistry and Molecular Biology for Bioinformatics (ENG BF751)—to include units addressing racism in genetics, medicine, and bioinformatics and to incorporate strategies for inclusive pedagogy. My motivation to redesign this course has been driven by witnessing current events, particularly those of summer 2020 surrounding the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor and the Black Lives Matter movement, as well as my own experiences as a woman, mother, and career scientist. I am excited to engage with and learn from my co-fellows about practices and methods for building an inclusive and antiracist environment at BU.
Prasad Patil, PhD
I hope to learn more about antiracist pedagogy as a means of exploring the history of race and racism in the field of biostatistics. From foundations in eugenics, to the interpretation of “Race” as a variable in statistical modeling, to the often-biased use of statistics in modern discourse on race, there are a wide range of topics concerning the treatment of race in biostatistics that are only recently receiving attention after decades of being ignored, overlooked, or forgotten. I wish to design a course overviewing these and other issues to inform and motivate future generations of conscientious data analysts, researchers, and citizens.
Tatiana Pontes (she/her/hers), PhD
My lived experience—as a mother of a disabled child, first-generation university graduate, woman with Brazilian citizenship living in the United States on a non-immigrant work visa, and person who has first-hand experience living with poverty during childhood—has increased my awareness of the systemic oppression and injustices that are experienced by equity-seeking individuals and communities. I have become conscious and passionate about social inequities and want to contribute to the solutions in creating a socially equitable and antiracist culture. I have begun to develop the tools to contribute to making important changes. The Designing Antiracism Curricula (DAC) Fellowship Program is a perfect opportunity to build those tools.
The Occupational Therapy Doctor Program is committed to preparing emerging clinicians to advocate for access, inclusion, equity, belongingness, pluralism, and social justice and demonstrate critical cultural consciousness. My goal is to make changes to our curriculum, fitting each course into an overarching antiracist curriculum plan, and creating a model antiracist educational program for similar OTD programs across the country.
Danielle Rousseau (she/her), PhD, LMHC
My interest in antiracist pedagogy is rooted in my passion for educational approaches that are universally inclusive and trauma informed. I seek to design a course that is holistic, strength-based, and rooted in diverse pedagogical approaches. This course will serve undergraduate and graduate students exploring the work of antiracism as it exists at the intersection of justice – criminal justice, social justice, food justice, housing justice, restorative justice, and healing justice. The antiracist focus of this course will center topics relevant to applied social science work and the course will provide a foundation in antiracism for the programs of Metropolitan College’s Department of Applied Social Sciences.
Harriette Scott, EdD
Recently, I heard someone say, “Intelligence can no longer be silent so ignorance can feel comfortable.” This topic interests me because I believe the frameworks can build bridges from history to the future. I want to be able to define, explain, and use antiracists content and frameworks in my courses, advising, committee work, reviewing graduate admissions applications, and serving and leading in and out of the classroom. Additionally, I hope to write, present, and facilitate conversations on antiracist frameworks and content.
Chun-Yi Sum, PhD
I look forward to exploring antiracist curricular materials and pedagogical strategies for teaching a survey course on world history and civilization. I am committed to ensuring that students find their cultural values represented and respected in my classroom.
Daniel Sussman, PhD
Bringing a social justice lens to data science is crucial for students to understand and shape the impact they can make through data. As a DAC Fellow, I look forward to revising the course CAS MA 415/615 Data Science to incorporate in-depth case studies with antiracist themes, adopt antiracist pedagogical approaches, and enable students to access and use data for social good.