Chronology of Major Projects

Different Voices Institute, June 1987

Angela Ginorio (Gender, Women and Sexuality Studies) and Johnnella Butler (former chair, American Ethnic Studies), project directors.  Funded by the Ford Foundation.  A precursor to the Curriculum Transformation Project, this project engaged American history and literature faculty members from colleges in the Northwest in the integration of new research on and by women of color into introductory courses.

Statewide Cultural Pluralism Project, 1992–1995

Barbara Leigh Smith (The Evergreen State College) and Johnnella Butler, project directors; Betty Schmitz, project coordinator. Funded by the Ford Foundation. Housed at The Evergreen State College, this project provided support for 26 colleges and universities in the state of Washington to articulate the role of cultural pluralism in their students’ education and to develop new courses and curricula. The University of Washington (UW) Seattle sent a team each year to a summer cultural pluralism institute; UW Bothell and Tacoma also sent teams in 1994.

Infusion of Cultural Pluralism into the UW Curriculum, 1992–93

Johnnella Butler and Fred Campbell (former Dean of Undergraduate Education), principal investigators; Betty Schmitz, project director. Funded by the Ford Foundation.  A companion grant to the statewide Cultural Pluralism Project, this project inaugurated the UW curriculum transformation model, an annual seminar in which undergraduate students worked with faculty members on course development. The project created of the Curriculum Transformation Project, housed between 1993 and 1997 in the Office of Undergraduate Education.

Teaching American Pluralism in the Humanities Project, 1994-1996

Johnnella Butler and Betty Schmitz, project directors and seminar conveners. Richard Johnson (History), seminar convener. Funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities. This project provided funding for faculty members in American studies and American Ethnic Studies to develop a comparative, interdisciplinary approach to teaching American pluralism.

Campus Diversity Initiative, 1996–1998

Johnnella Butler and Betty Schmitz, project directors. Funded by the Ford Foundation.  UW hosted the third national conference of project directors for the Campus Diversity Initiative. This work established strong links with scholars and diversity practitioners around the country. UW also became the Seattle pilot site for the Campus Diversity Initiative Public Information Project. This project established a network of public opinion leaders in the state and assisted local campuses in the dissemination of information about diversity.

Seattle Coalition for Educational Equity (SCEE) Summer Institutes, 1996 and 1997

Kimi Rabun, former director, SCEE, and institute coordinator. Funded by the Ford Foundation. Teams of faculty members from UW attended the summer curriculum transformation institutes sponsored by the Seattle Coalition for Educational Equity. These institutes focused on recruitment and retention of minority students and included an emphasis on curriculum transformation.

Summer Curriculum Transformation Institutes, 1998 and 1999

Betty Schmitz and Yvonne Terrell-Powell (Shoreline Community College), project directors. UW and Shoreline Community College sponsored summer curriculum transformation institute for faculty members from the state of Washington. These institutes focused on teaching contemporary and historical constructions of race, gender, class, nationality, ethnicity, disability and sexuality and their intersections.

Annual UW Curriculum Transformation Seminars

Betty Schmitz, co-director, with Ana Mari Cauce (1999), Michelle Habell-Pallan (2000), and Christy Flores (2001). Funded by the College of Arts & Sciences, the Office of Undergraduate Education, and the Ford Foundation.  In 1999, the Center for Curriculum Transformation inaugurated a new, annual seminar for faculty members and undergraduate students to collaborate on course revision. Each year the format and focus of the seminar varied, responding to critical needs for curriculum development.

Collaborative Transformations Project, 2001-2003

Betty Schmitz, director; Cristine Hinman Chopra, coordinator; Anu Taranath, faculty research associate. Funded by the Ford Foundation.  In addition to the annual curriculum transformation seminar, the grant from the Ford Foundation supported the development of a cohesive undergraduate liberal arts curriculum to teach students to think critically and comparatively about race, gender, class, ethnicity, nation and nationhood, disability, religion, and sexuality.

Teaching Transnational Perspectives, 2004

Priti Ramamurthy (Women Studies) and Betty Schmitz, co-directors.  Faculty members developed courses that incorporate substantive study of race, gender, ethnicity and other socially constructed categories of difference in comparative US-international perspective. New courses challenge traditional conceptions of the nation-state and local/global paradigms in light of large-scale flow of people, goods, images, and cultural influences across borders; and considered phenomena such as transnationalism, diaspora, and hybridity.

Disability Studies Course Development Seminar, 2006

Sharan Brown (Educational Leadership & Policy Studies) and Dennis Lang (Disability Studies), co-directors.  Funded by the President’s Diversity Appraisal Implementation Fund. This seminar created an interdisciplinary space for faculty members, graduate students, and undergraduate students to deepen their understanding of disability and create new courses for the Disability Studies Program.

Teaching Global Health Inequities: Seminar on Teaching the 2006 UW Common Book, Mountains Beyond Mountains by Tracy Kidder

Betty Schmitz, coordinator.  This seminar invited faculty members to develop courses integrating themes of global health inequities, postcolonialism, structural inequalities, and social justice into freshmen level courses to support the first UW Common Book.  Participants were encouraged to apply for summer support through the Office of Undergraduate Education to subsidize their efforts.

Expanding Global Learning Opportunities for UW Undergraduates, 2008

Rick Bonus (American Ethnic Studies), Anu Taranath (English), and Betty Schmitz, co-directors. The Center for Curriculum Transformation, Office of Minority Affairs & Diversity, and The Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs sponsored this seminar on the topic of preparing undergraduate students for global citizenship. Seminar participants created new courses and study abroad programs with substantive study of race, gender, ethnicity, and other socially constructed categories of difference and equipped students to address social justice issues.

Native American and Alaska Native Cultures, Information School Curriculum Transformation Seminar, 2009-2010

Matt Saxton (Associate Dean) and Cynthia Del Rosario (Diversity Programs Advisor), coordinators. In order to prepare majors to work with diverse communities and address their information needs, the Information School began an annual curriculum transformation seminar to incorporate the study of diversity in courses.  The first seminar focused on how American Indian and Alaska Native cultural practices intersect with information issues and needs in collaboration with the Center for Curriculum Transformation.

Diversity Pedagogies Seminar, 2011

The Center for Curriculum Transformation, the Center for Teaching and Learning, and the Simpson Center for the Humanities co-sponsored a seminar on diversity pedagogies to discuss current classroom practice and collaborate on developing transformational pedagogical and institutional strategies based on theoretical and critical practices in a variety of disciplines.  A key goal was to develop community of understanding and a leadership cohort that would continue to promote curricular and institutional change supportive of diversity.

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