For Your Information | May 14, 2020

Volume 1, Issue 5

Quick Summary

  • Affirming the Importance of Advancing Faculty Diversity in a Time of Pandemic
  • Embracing Our Aggie Diversity
  • Stand with Our Asian American Community
  • Celebrating UC Davis’ Remarkable Women

Download a PDF version of this newsletter

Dear Friends,

We’re still here and we are resilient. We’ve made it to mid-May, and continue to look forward as we seek to educate and serve. Our campus continues to develop a wealth of resources, including those shared by the UC Davis Ombuds Office and information from Global Affairs on “Global Teaching and Learning in a Time of COVID-19.”

We’re also enjoying links to performances by artists who had been booked by the Mondavi Center via their “virtual concerts” and hearing from students in the #byphilanthropy initiative who share stories related to the generosity of UC Davis’ donors.

We continue to thank our dedicated DEI staff, and our stakeholders who continue to serve both our internal campus and our external, regional communities. We remain passionate about DEI, and we thank you for taking time to read this newsletter which shares a subset of our work.

Kind Regards,

Renetta G. Tull
Vice Chancellor


Chancellor May issued a statement last week in response to the U.S Department of Education’s weakening of rules related to how university’s handle sexual harassment cases. Please take a moment to read.


Do you have a good DEI story you’d like to share with the community? We would welcome guest authors to publish news and stories on our website and feature in our bi-weekly newsletter. Please contact Tom O’Donnell for more information.


On April 16 and 17, UC Vice Provost Susan Carlson hosted the second convening of principal investigators for the UC Advancing Faculty Diversity grants and their teams to discuss the progress and lessons to date. The gathering was made especially poignant and thoughtful in light of COVID-19. COVID-19 has provoked deep reflection on how to continue to engage in the important work of diversity, equity, and inclusion in the face of significant disruption to every member of our community and to our institutions. We recognized that COVID-19 has brought forth the ways in which pre-existing inequities – including in higher education–are yielding disparate impacts for our students, our staff, and our faculty. We had both big and “mundane” conversations–at least as judged by our new reality–and both were relevant and important. Through these, we affirmed that the work of academic diversity should be enhanced, not derailed by calamity.

We acknowledge and celebrate the enormous efforts and contributions that UC Davis faculty are making in the virtual classrooms and through new realities in research and community engagement to ameliorate or attempt to address the uneven impacts of COVID 19 on our students and community. We know that many of you are teaching hundreds of students or even a thousand students and that most of your days are spent trying to be present and learning how to engage students. We see you in the powerful mentoring moments over zoom as you support students weighing the uncertainty of their future. We see the faculty who are having to parent and home school their children or care for elderly family members and recognize that these taxing joys are not experienced equally by all faculty. We affirm the importance of supporting our faculty during these times and have been working hard to adopt virtual innovations to sustain or create community among faculty and support one another with ideas, inspiration and moral support.

We affirm the value of prioritizing hires of faculty who are prepared in our new COVID-19 reality to connect their work both individually and collectively to the University of California’s achievement of its mission. A big theme of our UCOP convening was sharing with each other the various ways that multiple campuses are using statements of contribution to diversity, equity, and inclusion to achieve excellence in academic hiring consistent with our policies and values. We express our gratitude to the visionary leadership and commitment by UC Davis in programs like CAMPOS and CAMPSSAH which contribute to elevate the transformative power of inclusive excellence in teaching, research and service. 


Raquel E. Aldana
Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Diversity and Professor of Law


Office of Academic Diversity | AVC Raquel Aldana


The convening AVC Aldana referenced in her welcome message was for UC campus recipients of UCOP Advancing Faculty Diversity (AFD) grants to share with sister campuses and UC leadership the progress–and more importantly–the challenges they face in light of the current health crisis.

When UC Davis decided to move the Spring Quarter online, the FRIENDS team leads and staff decided to temporarily postpone all future meetings and work by the faculty on the grant. The precise way forward remains unclear until we have more certainty on the limitations for in-person meetings in the fall. However, should we need to observe physical distancing measures, team meetings will resume on a virtual platform in the fall.

After the shelter-in-place order, we discussed the idea that an “all Zoom” meeting might actually work; in fact, our consultant has run fully virtual CoPs. And while we may consider this option in the future, we still worry about considerable barriers that work against the spirit and aims of the grant such as the loss of personal connections and community that cannot be fully replicated through video chats and technical difficulties that can make focused, uninterrupted meetings a challenge.

We are confident in our framework and that we can resume with minimal effort. However, the postponement raised important questions. How do we gain back a sense that this work matters? Our project can easily be overshadowed by the urgency of current events. Yet the pandemic has further highlighted that minoritized groups have been further marginalized in times of crisis. It is difficult to identify if this will further tax our participants or inspire more majority faculty to join us.

We invite you to read in full our brief report on the FRIENDS webpage:


The Academic Senate and Academic Federation have chosen their award recipients for 2020, members honored for their teaching, research and public service including two CAMPSSAH Affiliate faculty scholars. Bettina Ng’weno, Associate Professor, Department of African American and African Studies received the Distinguished Teaching Awards: Undergraduate. Jonathan London, Associate Professor, Department of Human Ecology was awarded the Distinguished Scholarly Public Service Award. READ MORE


The deadline for submitting nominations for the 2020-21 CAMPOS and CAMPSSAH Faculty Scholars and the 2020 ADVANCE Scholar Award have been extended to June 1. Find out more information for CAMPOS Faculty Scholar nominations hereCAMPSSAH Faculty Scholar nominations hereADVANCE Scholar Award nominations here.

Office of Campus Community Relations | AEVC Rahim Reed


OCCR's Diversity and Inclusion Education and Training Program continues to provide courses and trainings via SDPS and departmental requests.  The team continues to ensure learners are able to interact fully as part of rebooting modules to accommodate virtual and distance learning, while considering accessibility to all participants and putting in place measures to mitigate security breaches.


UC Davis has officially launched its new diversity, equity, and inclusion online module titled “Embracing Our Aggie Diversity.” Designed for students, it is part of this year’s checklist of pre-orientation items for all new incoming students to complete. Even though the SIR deadline is still several days away we are happy to report that 5,606 student users have been successfully uploaded and assigned the module. This venture has also allowed us to bring to campus a Sexual Assault Prevention online module for our Harassment and Discrimination Assistance and Prevention Program (HDAPP) colleagues to use in their efforts to promote a safer UC Davis campus community. 


Sacramento area Chambers of Commerce have been hard at work providing help to local businesses during these troubling economic times. You can find out more about their efforts on their websites: Sacramento Hispanic Chamber of CommerceSacramento Black Chamber of CommerceSacramento Asian Pacific Chamber of CommerceSacramento Rainbow Chamber of Commerce

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


UCDH African American Faculty and Staff Association has been named a recipient of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine’s 2020 Inspiring Affinity Group Award. INSIGHT Into Diversity is the oldest and largest diversity and inclusion publication and job board in higher education today. The award is presented as a tribute to programs that are inspiring and encouraging higher education professionals to come to a campus that has created employees resource groups that offer mentoring, collaboration, social networking opportunities, and more.

In the coming years, underrepresented faculty will play an even bigger role in making institutions the go to campus where everyone knows they can feel respected and welcomed and their careers can flourish. Being the only recognition of its kind for institutions of higher education, this award showcases and allows institutions to stand out above others. Diversity matters in times like these!


Since the beginning of COVID19 pandemic, Asian Americans have been a target of hate crimes nationwide. There have been more than 1,500 reports of harassment and discrimination against innocent Asian Americans related to coronavirus within a single month, further fueled by hurtful and xenophobic rhetoric. And the trend is worsening! These acts of anti-Asian racism have no place in our multicultural society. We urge you to stand in solidarity with those experiencing discrimination and to reject these senseless acts. Research shows that by being proactive allies, we can stop the cycle, promote a broader culture of safety, lay the ground work for others to stop future discrimination of all kinds. Please stand with us and many others including community, organizational, and government leaders to denounce this anti-Asian discrimination and provide support to those who experience it. The resource below can help you do so. Together, let us focus on fighting against the virus, not the people who are affected!

DIVERSITY WORK SPOTLIGHT | Ambar Hernandez Negrete 

Ambar Hernandez Negrete is a fourth-year doctoral student in the School of Education at the University of California, Davis. In pursuing her doctorate, Hernandez Negrete aims to leverage policy research as a tool to transform the educational experiences of historically marginalized students of color. For her dissertation, she is conducting a critical race policy analysis of two Ethnic Studies related policies (California Assembly Bill 2016 and Arizona House Bill 2281). Her research interests are influenced by her personal journey navigating predominantly white public educational systems as an immigrant from Oaxaca, Mexico.

Her personal experience as an immigrant also motivates her interests in advancing research that recognizes the strengths and wealth of resources present in historically marginalized immigrant communities. As part of these efforts, Hernandez Negrete will be presenting the findings from an analysis of over 300 immigrant narratives from her work with Dr. Monica Torreiro-Casal and Dr. Linn Normand on Thursday, May 21, 2020. Her presentation, Documenting and Uplifting Immigrant Lived Narratives through a Strength-Based Perspective, is hosted by the UC Davis Global Migration Center. In this presentation, she seeks to highlight the strategies and mechanisms immigrants employ to overcome the challenges of navigating the current anti-immigrant climate.  

Mentors have been foundational in supporting Hernandez Negrete’s drive to use research as a tool for advocacy and transformation for immigrant communities and other marginalized groups. Mentors, through their encouragement and support, made it possible for her to reimagine the different routes she could pursue to advocate for historically marginalized communities. As well, many of the extraordinary mentors in her life, through their resilience, served as sources of inspiration for Ambar to pursue her educational and professional dreams. Counter to deficit-perspectives that often only focus on what communities of color “lack,” Hernandez Negrete recognizes the profound impact the wisdom, knowledge, and guidance she received from community mentors had on her persistence. The dedication, cariño, and empowering lessons mentors, throughout her educational journey, provided have been essential in her progression as a doctoral student; she advanced to candidacy last Fall after successfully defending her dissertation proposal to her qualifying exam committee members: Dr. Cati de los Rios, Dr. Danny C. Martinez, Dr. Maisha T. Winn, Dr. Margarita Jimenez Silva, Dr. Michal Kurlaender, and law Professor Raquel E. Aldana.

Please visit the UC Davis Global Migration Center events page for more information about Hernandez Negrete’s upcoming presentation.


Thursday, May 14

COVID-19: Addressing Health Disparities in the African American Community
Join our panel of health care providers as they address disparities in the African American community and discuss and dispel myths surrounding the coronavirus. LEARN MORE

FacultyConnect: A place to share experiences with remote teaching
Identifying and Supporting Struggling Students in Online Courses. LEARN MORE

Friday, May 15

Lessons Learned about Remote Teaching at UC Davis
Joining us this week will be Bob Blake, Distinguished Professor of Spanish and Director of Davis Language Learning Center. Bob Blake has established himself as a leader in the field of educational technology and online learning. We are excited to hear his perspective on the emergency move to remote teaching. Marina Radulaski, Department of Physics, will join us as well. As an Assistant Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering, Dr. Radulaski’s perspective will provide helpful insight into the experience of remote instruction in STEM fields. 

Please register now to join us this Friday at noon for the virtual faculty forum. Also, please save the dates (July 22-24) for the 2020 virtual Summer Institute on Teaching and Technology!


Covid-19 has provoked deep reflection on multiple levels, including on how to continue to engage in the face of significant disruption to our students, our family, our community, the world, and our planet. We wanted to share with you a few communications that we have found especially insightful. If you have a recommended reading you’ve found helpful or insightful, please let us know

Colleen Flaherty, “No Room of One’s Own,” Inside Higher Ed, April 21, 2020.
Early journal submission data suggest COVID-19 is tanking women’s research productivity. READ

Robin Lloyd, “Six Ways to Juggle Science and Childcare from Home,” Nature, April 9, 2020.
In the face of COVID-19 restrictions on daily life, scientist-parents describe their efforts to balance family and work duties. READ

Eve Rodsky, Fair Play: A Game-Changing Solution for When You Have Too Much to Do (and More Life to Live) (New York: Putnam, 2019).
Rodsky, a Harvard trained organizational management expert used what she learned about organizational systems and applied it to division of labor at home.  Her systems approach is built upon project management principles and utilizes a “system level” approach to addressing home based inequity. MORE

Featured Resource OMSBUD OFFICE
The Ombuds Office offers free confidential, off-the-record appointment to faculty, staff, and students experiencing academic or work-related concerns. The Ombuds offers guidance and coaching to assist in navigating difficult communications or conflicts. The website includes regularly updated virtual resources for handling these challenging times. Watch for upcoming webinars and trainings. Call (530) 754-7233 or (916) 734-1600


  • Council of Chief Diversity Officers at the University of California prepared 15 Guidelines to assist campus decision makers, faculty, administrators, students and staff on providing supportive positive and inclusive campus climates during the COVID-19 crisis.
  • Center for Educational Effectiveness Keep Teaching: To support UC Davis faculty during a time of COVID-19-related illness, quarantine, or campus closure, this site provides concise, practical resources and strategies for moving part or all of a course online to help you keep teaching.
  • From Academic Affairs Faculty Advisors for Work LifeAdvice for Managing Instruction While Supporting Family Commitments
  • School of Veterinary Medicine Counseling Services: Measures such as self-isolation and physical distancing make it hard to not feel alone, our virtual counseling resources can help. 
  • UC Davis Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety has put together suggestions to assist employers and growers with finding practical solutions to continue their essential work.
  • California Higher Education Basic Needs AllianceCOVID-19 Student Resources for CA College Students and their families (updated frequently)
Celebrating UC Davis’ Remarkable Women

Have you seen the list of the 55 remarkable women from UC Davis? A congresswoman, an astronaut, academic groundbreakers, the university’s first female chancellor and more. As part of the year-long celebration marking the 150th anniversary of the admission of women to the University of California, UC Berkeley created a website featuring this history and, led by Sophie Barbu, the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion contributed this list with both recent and early UC Davis women of significance. Read the article from UC Davis Dateline here.

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, and thank you for all that you do!