newsletter banner with titles

For Your Information | February 4, 2021

Volume 2, Issue 8

Quick Summary

  • The Free People of Color Lecture Series
  • Welcome to our New Education Specialist Christopher Nguyen Pheneger
  • Members in the CAMPOS and ADVANCE Community Contributing to the UCD Efforts Fighting COVID

Download a printable version of this week's newsletter

Dear Friends, 

We’ve made it to February, and I’m grateful that it looks like we are on the road to recovery! The New York Times talked about our campus this week, referring to the “Healthy Davis Together” campaign this week, and noted that,   

“Though vaccines have begun to roll out, epidemiologists say playbooks like the one in Davis — masks, distance, hygiene and, in particular, cheap, rapid tests to detect cases quickly — may be the only way to reopen schools and businesses in the near term until the nation achieves herd immunity.”

My tests part of a routine, so that grocery shopping and errand days are also my “COVID-test days.” The testing process is quick and easy. I’m always in and out of the testing center in 15 minutes or less! We can be proud of our campus’ efficiency and attention to our health. Even as people begin to get the vaccine, we’ll still need our tests because a person can be asymptomatic and pass the virus along, even while vaccinated. The DEI office is participating in Healthy Davis Together as well. Our goal is to make sure that people from all backgrounds have access to testing and to the vaccine, and that we all emerge from this pandemic with continued respect for one another. 

In the last newsletter, we mentioned briefly that January 27th marked the 76th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz and the International Holocaust Remembrance Day. This week, our internal DEI leadership council members took time to note that during the 1940’s, millions of the world’s Jewish people were murdered, along with LGBTQ people, people with disabilities, and many others in the worst genocide numerically in modern times.  The world witnessed mass devastation caused by unchecked hate, the impact of which continues to reverberate in many Jewish families today.   

Those lessons are of unprecedented importance these days, as hate crimes in the United States reach their highest levels in more than a decade. We’ve seen hate infiltrate our own community, in the speech and signage as well.  As we affirm the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion at our University, we share some reflections on how the lessons hard-wrought from the Holocaust can serve as a light to guide us through these times. Unchecked hate and complacency fueled the Holocaust.  We must speak out against the resurgence of anti-Semitism and all forms of hate.

In those reflections with our DEI Leadership Council this week, AVC Hendry Ton noted something that resonated deeply among us when he expressed: “Get over it already” is a common phrase used by oppressors, whether it is in the context of the Holocaust, racial trauma, or domestic violence.  We need to honor the memory of Holocaust victims, understand that the healing process for intergenerational trauma is complex and nuanced, and be allies and advocates not Holocaust deniers.

As a final note to this first week of February edition of our newsletter, and on a personal note, I miss being able to go to the Black History Month events with my family, to hear see the plays at church, and to participate in the various programs. As we think about Black history, it’s important to remember that we are not only recognizing contributions from those who lived in the past, but that we are also acknowledging and respecting Black people who are living and making contributions in the present. 

Thank you for sharing time with us this week and we appreciate your engagement in DEI’s efforts.

Warm Regards,

Message from President Drake on Black History Month

On the first day of Black History Month, Monday (Feb. 1), UC President Michael V. Drake shared a video message honoring “the Black workers, scholars, artists and activities who have propelled our university and the world forward.” “Throughout UC’s history, Black alumni, faculty and students have been integral to our excellence, making pioneering advances in science, medicine, the humanities, the law and other fields,” said Drake, who goes on to discuss Ralph J. Bunche, Annie Virginia Stephens Coker, Roy Overstreet, Barbara Christian, and the UC students who organized and marched to fight racial discrimination in housing and employment, and to demand equal rights for all. Read the statement.

The Free People of Color Lecture Series

This series is hosted by the Aoki Center at King Hall and the UC Davis Department of History to explore the rights of people of color in the United States following the Civil War and inquire how that history continues to shape our thinking today. The Series will bring leading scholars from around the country to answer such questions as: What does freedom mean in the absence of chattel slavery? Which rights adhere to all free people, and which rights functioned more as privileges belonging to a narrow few? How did the establishment of birthright national citizenship transform the legal rights both of citizens and of so-called aliens? Learn more here.

Apply for the 2021 Healthy UC Davis Project Grant

Healthy UC Davis is requesting intent for proposals for projects that will support our organizational mandate of making UC Davis the healthiest community in the nation. They are looking for project leads/teams with proposals that promote health and well-being, which can include promotion of Physical Activity, Nutrition, Mental and Emotional Well-being and Smoke and Tobacco Free. Healthy UC Davis will provide the funding and some minimal support for study design and project assistance. In the 2021 grant cycle, special consideration will be given to projects aiming to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion at UC Davis in a substantial and meaningful way. The maximum amount of discretionary allocations Healthy UC Davis can recommend for the 2021-2022 fiscal year is $85,000. The application deadline is February 26, 2021 at 5PM. More information about the 2021 Healthy UC Davis Project Grant.

Applications for the 2020-21 UC Davis Chancellor’s Fellowship for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

As the UC Davis student body becomes increasingly diverse and reflective of the population demographics of California, more is needed from faculty to foster a learning environment where all students can develop the skills to be successful. Some faculty members have made exceptional contributions in supporting, tutoring, mentoring, and advising underrepresented students and/or students from underserved communities. To recognize these outstanding efforts, the Chancellor is offering the Chancellor’s Fellowship for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Learn more and submit an application hereDeadline: March 12, 2021.


Office of Campus Community Relations | AEVC Rahim Reed

Police Accountability Board (PAB) Winter 2021 Public Meeting

Held each quarter during the regular academic year, the Police Accountability Board public meeting provides opportunities for Davis and Sacramento campus community members and others, including people from the surrounding communities, to learn more about the board’s work and how to file inquiries, and to raise concerns or issues. The meeting is informal and follows an "office hour" format. Due to the current measures being taken in response to COVID-19, the PAB’s Winter 2021 public meeting will be held online via Zoom with board representatives in attendance on Wednesday, February 17 from 4:00-5:00pm. To attend, please register here. More information on the PAB can be found at

Welcome to our New Education Specialist Christopher Nguyen Pheneger

It is our pleasure to introduce Christopher Nguyen Pheneger to the DEI family. Christopher is an Aggie alum and it’s our pleasure to welcome him back to UC Davis. He comes to us with great experience in DEI work, having been a member of our Student Recruitment and Retention Center and active in the efforts from our Community Resource Centers. Christopher has presented in numerous venues related to experiences and needs of transracially adopted students, sustainable learning communities, mentorship, and the experiences of API students in higher education institutions. He comes with a wealth of experience in student-centered/affairs work, and we look forward to his expertise that will enrich our diversity and inclusion education offerings. His professional experience includes serving as student support specialist at American River College, program coordinator of CSU Sacramento’s Full Circle Project, and serving as a mentor and facilitating trainings aimed to support API students. He holds a master’s degree in higher education and student affairs.

Christopher will assume the second Diversity/Inclusion Educator & Specialist position, and in that capacity, assist Mikael Villalobos and Eric Sanchez continue to build out our diversity and inclusion education efforts to staff, faculty, and students. His background in student affairs will serve him (and us!) well as we continue to expand our offerings in leadership development for our students focusing on diversity, equity and inclusion.

Office of Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion | AVC Hendry Ton

Health Equity Academy – Leaders for Tomorrow’s Healthcare (HEALTH)

The School of Medicine K-12 Outreach program will offer six sessions beginning February 20 at no cost to 9th-12th grade students from historically underrepresented or rural backgrounds with an interest in medicine or health. Students will meet health professionals, current medical students, and other high school students to gain leadership opportunities and learn about career pathways in healthcare to research and address public health issues in their communities.

Office of Academic Diversity | Interim AVC Lorena Oropeza

Award and Grant Opportunities from P.L.A.C.E. with CAMPSSAH

The Center for the Advancement of Multicultural Perspectives on Social Science, Arts, and Humanities (CAMPSSAH) is pleased to announce four new opportunities as part of the P.L.A.C.E. with CAMPSSAH Advancing Faculty Diversity (AFD) grant:

  1. SCHOLAR OF THE QUARTER (WINTER) recognizes faculty at the Assistant or Associate ranks whose scholarship epitomizes engaged excellence, defined as scholarly or creative achievements that involve diverse communities with a commitment to social change. Application deadline: February 8, 2021.
  2. MANUSCRIPT WORKSHOP will aid selected faculty in getting a project from rough draft to published manuscript by providing financial resources to secure critical feedback. P.L.A.C.E. will offer up to $2,500 each for four UC Davis faculty to allow the recipients to convene a one- to two-day workshop that brings together chosen experts in the scholar’s field to help prepare a manuscript for submission to a publisher. Application deadline: February 22, 2021.
  3. POST-TENURE START-UP AWARD will offer two newly-tenured faculty a “start-up” package of $4,000 as an Academic Enrichment Fund to assist them in the development of a new project or allow them to refocus their energies in ways more attuned with their desired career path within the university. Application deadline: February 22, 2021. 

Please visit our webpage for more details and application requirements.

Members in the CAMPOS and ADVANCE Community Contributing to the UCD Efforts Fighting COVID

You may have seen the recent New York Times article, “A California University Tries to Shield an Entire City from Coronavirus,” highlighting the “most ambitious program” of coronavirus mitigation efforts in the country. It featured 2019 ADVANCE Scholar Award winner and Professor of Evolution and Ecology in the College of Biological Sciences and Medical Microbiology and Immunology in the School of Medicine, Jonathan Eisen.In his role at UC Davis and the Healthy Davis Together (HDT) initiative, he notes, “1. Helping w/ environmental testing for #SarsCoV2 (projects being led by others such as @davidacoil @colorsofwater) 2. Running a @ucdavis course where students work at testing kiosks testing.” 

Also, CAMPOS Faculty Scholar Samuel Díaz-Muñoz contributes to science communication for Spanish speakers related to COVID.


February 8, Monday

Supporting Students during a Time of Collective Racial Trauma | 12:00PM
Associate Dean for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Piri Ackerman-Barger works to promote diversity and inclusion in nursing and medical schools. In this presentation, she discusses why health equity and social justice matter to everyone and highlights a number of methods to identify, understand the impacts of and undo racism. Join this virtual event to learn more about: Types of racism; How we know racism exists; Cognitive impacts of racism; How to undo racism; Best practices and promising practices for providing equity-minded curricula and teaching practices. Register here.

Graduate Group in Education Speaker Series | 12:10PM
Marcela Cuellar, School of Education, School Organization and Educational Policy and Natalia Deeb-Sossa, Chicana/o Studies, Recruitment Practices during COVID-19: Perspectives from Institutional Agents at an Emerging Hispanic-Serving Institution (HSI). Zoom link

February 10, Wednesday

UC Davis Library, Renate Chancellor, "Libraries, Leadership and Social Justice: Lessons from E.J. Josey" | 1:00PM
Librarian, educator and activist E.J. Josey stands out within the broader social and political landscape of civil rights for his courage and leadership in desegregating the library profession. As president of the American Library Association (ALA) from 1984 to 1985, he successfully drafted a resolution preventing state library associations from discriminating against librarians of color — an act considered by many to have desegregated the ALA. During this online talk, Dr. Renate Chancellor will seek to answer the following questions: How did Josey transform the modern profession? What lessons can we take from his leadership and apply today? Register here.

Book Project: Losing Our Marbles: Mental Illness Narratives | 12:00PM
A talk by Karma Waltonen, Continuing Lecturer, University Writing Program. Register here.

Film Screening and Discussion - Alyscia Cunningham: I Am More Than My Hair | 4:30PM
Alyscia Cunningham is an entrepreneur, author, filmmaker and photographer. Her second book and documentary film, I Am More Than My Hair, interviews females who have experienced hair loss due to a health-related condition. The program will include a short film by Chara Charis Andrews, followed by a Q&A moderated by Associate Professor of Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies Kimberly Nettles-Barcelón. Register here.

Julie Sze Book Chat, Environmental Justice in a Moment of Danger | 5:10PM
This new acclaimed book examines mobilizations and movements, from protests at Standing Rock to activism in Puerto Rico in the wake of Hurricane Maria. It is an essential primer on environmental justice, packed with cautiously hopeful stories for the future. Register here.

February 11, Thursday

College of Engineering Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Panel | 9:00AM
Join Cindy Rubio Gonzalez, Faculty Assistant to the Dean for Diversity and Inclusion, and other panelists to learn about the College of Engineering's efforts in diversity, equity and inclusion. Following the panel discussion, panelists will answer questions. Please submit questions related to college-wide DEI efforts by Thursday, Feb. 4 using the form below. Questions may also be submitted anonymously hereRegister here.

Winter 2021: UC Davis Forum on the UN SDGs | 9:00AM
The three-part series of forums is centered around UC Davis engagement with sustainable development across economic, social and environmental dimensions. The forums aim to build a campuswide community deeply committed to advancing the SDGs, and stimulate the creation of a UC Davis community of practice to think and work together and help chart a course for intentional and sustained commitment to the SDGs agenda. This forum will focus on the connections between the SDG Agenda and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts, and will highlight ways that UC Davis is contributing to specific SDGs, including Zero Hunger, Climate Action, and more. Learn more and register here.

February 12, Friday

Foundations of an Anti-racist Pedagogy | 12:10PM
Racial inequities persist on campuses, in curricula, and in classrooms. In this faculty workshop, participants will explore how to take action towards building an anti-racist curriculum and anti-racist pedagogical and assessment practices -- proactively and responsively -- . We will also discuss actionable steps towards building an anti-racist presence, along cognitive, social, and teaching dimensions. Register here.

February 16, Tuesday

UCPromISE, “Advancing Equity for Undocumented Students and Students from Mixed-Status Families at the University of California” | 12:00PM
A panel discussion of new report. Authors will be in conversation with UC undocumented service providers to discuss key findings and practices to advance equity for all students affected by unjust immigration policies. Register hereYou can download the full report here.

Book Project: Reimaging and Reinventing Our Community Response - Forum on Mental Health & Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice | 4:00PM
"Mental Health: Reimaging and Reinventing Our Community Response," a forum on mental health & law enforcement and criminal justice featuring the UC Davis Police Department, Yolo County District Attorney’s Office & UC Davis Police Accountability Board. Register here.

February 18, Thursday

Chancellor’s Colloquium: María Teresa Kumar | 4:00PM
Alumna María Teresa Kumar, founding president and CEO of Voto Latino, which has registered more than a million voters since 2012, and who is an Emmy-nominated MSNBC contributor, is the next guest in the Chancellor’s Colloquium Distinguished Speaker Series. Her chat with Chancellor Gary S. May will be presented via Zoom. Learn more and register here.

February 19, Friday

Race, Museums, Art History: Templeton Colloquium in Art History | 4:00PM
Can the museum be a space of anti-racism, and can the discipline of art history help to achieve that? The 2021 Templeton Colloquium focuses on these questions to better understand the relationship between the display of art and racial privilege. Speakers will include Professor Bridget Cooks of UC Irvine, author of Exhibiting Blackness: African Americans and the American Art Museum (2011), and Dr. Susan Mullin Vogel, a curator, filmmaker and expert on African art whose most recent book is El Anatsui: Art and Life (2020). Following their brief presentations there will be a conversation moderated by Michael Yonan, professor of art history and Alan Templeton Endowed Chair in European Art, 1600–1830. Register here.

March 1, Monday

Campus Community Book Project Author Lecture | 4:00PM
Ellen Forney is an author, artist, teacher, and mental health coach. Her work includes TheNew York Times bestselling graphic memoir Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, & Me, the story of her diagnosis and struggle with bipolar disorder and this year's selection for the UC Davis Campus Community Book ProjectRegister here.

April 22, Thursday

Manetti Shrem, Art Studio Visiting Artist Lecture Series, Arnold Joseph Kemp in Conversation with Sampada Aranke | 4:30PM
The materials employed in Arnold J. Kemp’s interdisciplinary practice absorb or reflect light while mirroring likeness, becoming haunted and ghostly metaphors for absented and obfuscated black bodies. Kemp will give a poetry reading, then discuss the relationship between language and the aesthetics presented in his paintings, photographs and sculpture with Manetti Shrem Museum scholar- in-residence Sampada Aranke. Kemp’s exhibition Arnold Joseph Kemp: I would survive. I could survive. I should survive, curated by Arnanke, is on view through April 25, 2021. Register here


Kim Bojórquez, “How Joe Biden’s Immigration Plan Works, and What it Would Mean for California,” Sacramento Bee, January 21, 2021.
Kevin R. Johnson, dean of the UC Davis School of Law and Caitlin Patler, associate professor of Sociology at UC Davis, offer insight and analysis on potential changes coming to federal immigration policy. Read the article here.

UCPromISE, “Advancing Equity for Undocumented Students and Students from Mixed-Status Families at the University of California”
Features data from a survey of 2,742 UC undergraduate students and compares the experiences of three groups: undocumented immigrant students, U.S. citizen students with undocumented parents, and U.S. citizen students with immigrant parents who are permanent residents or naturalized citizens. The report powerfully illustrates that immigration policy disrupts the educational experiences of a larger group of students than often recognized. Drawing lessons from undocumented student programs at the UC, it identifies areas of improvement that can aid all universities in advancing equity for all students impacted by immigration policies. Download the report here..

Corrie Decker and Elisabeth McMahon, “What Americans across the political spectrum got wrong about the attempted insurrection,” Washington Post, January 21, 2021. 
Associate professor of history at UC Davis, Corrie Decker, co-wrote a perspective piece about the global history of anti-Black racism and the idea of American greatness. Read the article.



There has been an increase recently of reports of “Zoombombing” across campus so we’d like to share some resources to help mitigate the likelihood of your virtual meetings from being disrupted by such actions. “Zoombombing” is a form of internet trolling in which individuals maliciously disrupt Zoom meetings and attendees often by inciting obscene images and derogatory language.

Per our Principles of Community, UC Davis is committed to confront and reject ALLforms of discrimination — a commitment that extends to virtual spaces we occupy amidst these unprecedented times. We recommend all incidents of hate and bias be reported through our UC Davis Report Hate and Bias channels so we may respond to and track these incidents in a timely manner.

We would especially like to recognize that during times of crisis, marginalized communities are often disproportionately affected by the crisis itself. As such,  injuries related to incidents of hate and bias can become magnified due to heightened emotions and increased tensions. Therefore, it is important to reiterate: just because our spaces are quickly shifting to virtual platforms, this does not change the way we should relate to one another.

We encourage our Campus community to utilize the available resources for Studentsand Staff and the Academic and Staff Assistance Program [ASAP]) to cope with the heightened emotions and stress resulting from instances of hate and bias. While our campus operations have shifted online, most campus resource centers are still available in modified formats (i.e. Zoom, Phone, Email).

UCD Human Resource’s Top-5 Zoom Security Recommendations:

  • Don’t post unsecured meeting links on webpages
  • Require Registration and Password to control who enters your meeting
  • Turn off Join Before Host so crashers can’t join before you
  • Disable Screen Sharing and Annotation for participants
  • Read the Zoom guides found here:

Counseling Services Mental Health Resources Webinar [requires Kerberos log-in] One of the things we hear frequently from instructors about teaching in Spring 2020 is the extent to which they encountered students in their courses experiencing significant stress or crisis, yet they felt unequipped to help or direct students to resources. To help, Student Health and Counseling Services provided a Mental Health Resources Webinar. If supporting students in crisis is a concern for you, please watch this previously-recorded webinar. Webinar topics include an overview of mental health services on campus, how to make referrals, signs of distress and how to respond, and how faculty can support students in the classroom (remote or on-campus). Student Affairs has also provided this folder of faculty resources.

UC Davis Office for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion COVID resources page In English and Spanish to reach our communities and we are actively updating with new resources.

Content Submission Form

Do you have a DEI-oriented event, announcement, or article that you would like us to help promote through our DEI communication channels? Did your unit/department or a member of your unit/department receive recognition that demonstrates your commitment to DEI? If so, please send us your information through this online form.

We invite you to share and submit your thoughts and items for our newsletter (either current or future news and events) at

Thank you for your dedication to diversity, equity and inclusion!