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Diversity, Inclusion & Fairness Conference comes to campus this April

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The inaugural Diversity, Inclusion & Fairness (D.I.F.) Conference, hosted by the Georgia Southern University Multicultural Student Center, will take place in the Russell Union on Saturday, April 9, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This conference aims to create an opportunity to openly talk, listen and learn about issues related to diversity, inclusion and fairness with the theme of “Embrace the Elephant.” Sessions will help attendees develop an understanding of the issues, increase awareness of identities, biases and privileges, engage in dialogue and challenge one another to expand boundaries of comfort zones.

We are excited to host this inaugural conference for our campus and local community,” said Dorsey Baldwin, director of the Multicultural Student Center. “It is a combination of three previous conferences that we have hosted in the past. We have very specific goals for the conference, but if I could sum them all up, I would say that we expect for conference attendees to gain tangible ways to create positive social change on campus and in their community.”

Justin Jones-Fosu, award-winning entrepreneur and author, will open the conference with his speech “Hug an Elephant, Kiss a Giraffe: Redefining Diversity in Everyday Life.” Jones-Fosu was named one of EBONY Magazine’s “30 Young Leaders on the Rise” in 2009 and has been featured in SMART CEO Magazine, the Baltimore Business Journal and other publications.

Chris Linder, Ph.D., assistant professor at the University of Georgia, will bring light to some pressing cultural and diversity issues, and discuss ways to positively counter issues in those areas in her closing keynote speech. Linder has worked as a student affairs professional for 10 years, and she has studied racism and white privilege in feminism intensely.

Those who participate in the conference can use the hashtag #MakeADIF16 to detail the experience, and those who are unable to attend are encouraged to follow the hashtag to learn more.

Ateendees may register for the conference online at http://tiny.cc/DIF16 through Monday, April 4 at 11:59 p.m., or at the Russell Union room 2070 through Tuesday, April 5 at 5 p.m. Registration fees include breakfast, lunch, access to all sessions and a conference souvenir. Registration is $10 for students, $15 for non-Georgia Southern students, $15 for middle and high school students and $20 for faculty and staff. Special group rates do apply.

For more information on D.I.F., including volunteer information and conference session schedules, visit http://students.georgiasouthern.edu/multicultural/d-i-f-conference/ or contact the Multicultural Student Center at (912) 478-5409 or msc@georgiasouthern.edu.

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