NAC&U administrators, faculty, and staff joined together in San Francisco last week to celebrate the 7th Annual Boyer Awardee, Beverly Daniel Tatum; honor author William Sullivan; and share best practices in civic engagement and other relevant topics with audiences at the AAC&U Annual Meeting.
NAC&U Board Chair and President of the University of Evansville Tom Kazee presented the Ernest L. Boyer Award to Dr. Tatum, citing her dedication to helping students understand how racism plays a role in their lives and how racial identity development can help them to overcome it.
“Dr. Tatum’s persistence in addressing these difficult dialogues provides a useful model for higher education that can benefit our society, just as Ernest Boyer envisioned,” said President Kazee. “Her lessons come at a crucial time in our nation when we are not fully integrated as a multiracial society and when our differences still threaten our democracy.”
A standing room only crowd applauded Dr. Tatum as she accepted the award before delivering the Boyer Lecture, a plenary addressing race relations in America, examining attitudes and events since the 1950s with emphasis on affirmative action, mass incarceration, and the 2008 economic crisis.
Later that day more than 100 people gathered to honor author William Sullivan whose book “The Power of Integrated Learning” details how NAC&U members’ approach to higher education leads to holistic success for graduates.
NAC&U members also participated in several presentations and panel discussions throughout the conference. NAC&U sponsored one session in which members and students shared how civic engagement has enhanced learning on their campuses. Evelin Cabellaro Omana, a freshman at Wagner College, talked about how civic engagement has taught her to go “deeper than volunteer work” and to find “the root cause and try to work out solutions.”
St. Edward’s University senior Erica Schomer discussed how her role as an advisor to freshman helped bring an undergraduate voice to student advising. Lastly, recent alumnus Felipe Avendano-Vela illustrated how two years spent leading physical education in an afterschool program allowed him to refine positive behavior strategies and work on classroom management.
“It’s one thing to develop curriculum sitting at a laptop. It’s another thing to implement it,” said Mr. Avendano-Vela.
The following day, NAC&U President Nancy Hensel also joined a panel on “Envisioning the Faculty in the 21st Century” that examined ideas for intentionally developing faculty roles that result in institutional models to support student learning and higher education’s full mission.