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Supporting diversity & inclusion

In UW Study Abroad we are working to ensure that our programs are accessible to and supportive of students of diverse and underrepresented backgrounds throughout each stage of the study abroad process. These efforts are in conjunction with the UW-wide goals to create new policies and practices that align with the Race & Equity Initiative, along with nationwide efforts to address diversity in education abroad. In this aim, we encourage program directors to incorporate the following into their programming planning and student support:

    • Further expand your knowledge and develop your abilities in supporting diverse students on your program, recognizing that a student’s identity can deeply impact their study abroad experience.
    • Consider how your own experiences, identities, values, beliefs and stereotypes may inform your awareness and how you interact with students whose backgrounds are different from your own.
    • Be aware of and prepared to connect students of diverse backgrounds with information and colleagues that are available for additional support on the UW campus, through internet resources and in the study abroad host country.
    • When unsure of how to deal with a student situation or experience: listen to the student, validate their experience and connect them with additional resources so that they feel supported.


Diversity within education abroad – articles & resources

On the UW Study Abroad website and in the Study Abroad Handbook we provide resources for diverse populations of students to learn more about the experiences of past students and travelers abroad. There are sections on Gender & Women’s Topics, Race & Ethnicity, Sexuality & LGBTQ Students, Students with Disabilities and Undocumented Students. This information is important for program directors to be familiar with so that they can connect students with resources and additional information as needed.

Diversity Abroad is the leading professional consortium dedicated to advancing diversity and inclusive practices in international education. Diversity Abroad publishes articles on a variety of topics that address underrepresentation and equitable support for diverse student populations in study abroad.

Mobility International USA (MIUSA) is a disability-led non-profit organization that advances disability rights and leadership globally. Refer to MIUSA’s website for resources to help you design a program that is accessible to all students, including those with physical, sensory, cognitive, and/or behavioral disabilities.

This piece by Charles Lu examines the racial gap in study abroad participants. In an ever globalizing world, are students who do not study abroad graduating with disadvantages in the job market? This article provides seven ways in which universities can proactively design and cultivate study abroad programs that will attract and benefit populations typically underrepresented in study abroad.

Janet Hulstrand describes different recruitment and programming tactics that universities and study abroad providers have employed to increase the participation of diverse and underrepresented students in study abroad opportunities.

This book is a great resource by UW faculty member and long-time study abroad Program Director, Dr. Anu Taranath. Through engaging personal travel stories and thought-provoking questions about the ethics and politics of our travel, “Beyond Guilt Trips” shows readers ways to grapple with their discomfort and navigate differences through accountability and connection. Dr. Taranath’s book includes approachable insights and discussion prompts that can help fuel important conversations with your student group before, during and after your program. Consider incorporating her book into your pre-departure orientations and on-site curriculum.

This chapter from “New Directions for Student Services” focuses on advising procedures and key support services universities should have in place so they can better guide students with disabilities who are interested in studying abroad. The chapter highlights creating a comprehensive advising approach, cultivating a welcoming environment, accommodation requests, preparing students for the experience, financial dynamics and post-program considerations. There are also useful links and resources for those interested in learning more about working with students with disabilities.

An entertaining travel memoir that tells the story of a young Black woman’s experiences living in and falling in love with Spain, all while grappling with attitudes and treatment towards her racial identity in the U.S. and abroad. The book provides a glimpse into the past and present of Spain and could be used as a resource for students to explore issues around racial identity in Spain.


Inclusive teaching & identity awareness resources

The UW Center for Teaching and Learning proposes strategies for inclusive teaching and provides resources, examples and perspectives from students and faculty to help members of the UW teaching community teach more inclusively. These resources can be helpful in better understanding how to design programming that is inclusive of all students, and navigate identity dynamics and student issues abroad.

As part of the Race and Equity Initiative, the UW offers a series of workshops for faculty and staff focused on how to better incorporate equity and social justice practices into daily life and work and build upon current knowledge, skills and abilities.

This is the UW Provost’s report on President Cauce’s Race and Equity Initiative that was launched in Spring 2015. The report includes interviews with faculty and staff and examples of programs that are helping to advance the initiative. This report is helpful to understanding the goals, objectives and origins of the initiative, and also includes a list of resources for further reading.

There are many great resources available for better understanding gender identity and the importance and use of personal pronouns. A couple are listed below and can help you better support students who may identify across the spectrums of gender identity, gender expression, biological sex and sexual identity.

Pronouns Matter

Trans 101 – The Basics

Your Crash Course on Gender to Save and Reference Later by Ari Cofer

GLAAD Media Reference Guide – Glossary of Terms

This article articulates the need for faculty members to recognize the importance of championing social justice issues both with one another and in their classroom. The article points to ways in which people from privileged groups can better support those who come from oppressed groups. It presents several vignettes illustrating the ways in which social justice issues are evident amongst faculty members and aims to increase awareness of the privilege and gender/race dynamics that pervade academia and beyond.

This short book is a great tool for students, faculty and staff alike to examine systems of privilege and difference in the U.S. The author links theory with accessible, engaging examples the help readers to understand the roots and consequences of privilege and their connection to it.

This book covers theoretical foundations and curricular frameworks incorporating social justice into teaching practices. It provides a foundation for engaging with the complex topics of discrimination and inequality with students and includes an appendix with participant handouts and facilitator preparation guides.

This article lists a wide range of unearned advantages that white people commonly experience in the U.S. It has been used extensively in educational settings to encourage individuals to reflect on and recognize their own unearned advantages and disadvantages as parts of immense and overlapping systems of power. This list can be used as a starting point for group discussions on white privilege and how racial identities and systems of oppression operate in different cultural contexts.

This booklet is a useful tool for anyone who wants to be more effective in their interactions and work with people with disabilities. While the booklet is not specific to study abroad, it provides useful tips on disability etiquette to help eliminate some misconceptions about people with various disabilities. The booklet provides general disability information, terminology tips, and sections specific to a wide variety of disabilities. This is a great resource for program directors who know that they have a person with a disability interested or participating in their program or anyone who would like to learn more for use in future interactions with people with disabilities.