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FSU Anti-Racism Funds – funded proposals


Dear FSU Members,

As you know, the FSU and university administration agreed in the last round of bargaining that $25,000 would be devoted to anti-racist initiatives in both year two and three of the contract.  Because bargaining did not conclude until the middle of year two of the contract, we were all under something of a time crunch to determine how this money was to be spent; for year two, it needs to happen this semester.

Fortunately, FSU members answered the call and submitted close to 20 proposals for anti-racist initiatives this semester.  The FSU’s Anti-Racism Committee evaluated the proposals and made recommendations to the Provost’s office, who then approved them.   Not surprisingly, $25,000 was not near enough to fund all the wonderful proposals, but the Anti-Racism Committee is excited by the range of initiatives that are being supported by FSU Anti-Racism Funds.   Please see a short description of the proposals below.

And please look for the Call for Proposals for next fiscal year sometime in late Spring or Summer.  With bargaining over, we should be able to give faculty and librarians much more lead time to put together proposals and carry out these important initiatives next year.

Thanks for rising to the occasion on such short notice.

Funded Proposals for Spring 2022 (in no particular order)

Authors: Marisol Negrón, Latino Studies Program Director, and Cedric Woods, Critical Ethnic and Community Studies (CECS) Program Director

Title: “Teaching in Freedom”: Human Rights, Racial Justice, and Collective Empowerment

Description:  The Latino Studies Program and CECS will sponsor two events that highlight our joint programmatic emphasis on centering questions of race, gender, sexuality, human rights, and collective empowerment. The April 6 film screening and discussion of the documentary Stateless, which explores the impact of state-sanctioned racism in the Dominican Republic, centers questions of human rights, anti-blackness, and what storytelling and transnational experiences can tell us about the larger neoliberal world. On May 3, Dr. Lorgia-García Peña will lead a discussion on “teaching in freedom,” a collective learning process that centers the knowledges, histories, and epistemologies of the Global South as well as Indigenous, Black, and Latinx communities. Both events will center human rights, racial justice, and collective empowerment.


Authors: María Carvajal Regidor and the university-wide Writing Center. 

Title: Sustaining Anti-Racist Agendas Through Research & Writing Support for Faculty of Color

Description: FSU's grant will fund qualitative research on the ongoing faculty of color writing group to better understand the writing routines and needs of faculty of color. It will also fund a multi-day summer writing retreat for UMB faculty of color. This retreat will include writing-related workshops and dedicated writing time. It will be co-led by Dr. María Carvajal Regidor and Dr. Florianne (Bo) Jimenez and hosted through the university-wide Writing Center.


Authors:  Nada Mustafa Ali and Susan Thompson

Title:  Remembering bell hooks: A Workshop on Art, Quilting, Storytelling and Resistance

Description: This workshop will honor the legacy of African American feminist scholar, educator, and public intellectual bell hooks, who passed in December 2021. Renowned Boston artist Susan Thompson will lead the workshop. She will exhibit her work, narrate personal and public stories embedded in her quilts, and will lead the UMass Boston community in an exercise of quilt-making & community-building. The workshop will take place in April 2022.


Authors: Professor Maria Ivanova, Nkasiobu Wodu and Jiedine Phanbuh, PhD candidates.

Title: Connecting with our Community: UMass Boston as an Agent of Anti-Racism and Health Promotion in Dorchester.

Description: The program engages formerly incarcerated people from Inner City Weightlifting, a gym with an explicit social purpose based in Dorchester, who face structural racism, historical inequities, and a lack of economic mobility, and who experience the generational impact of these persistent challenges - with conflict resolution and interpersonal communication skills to enable improved conflict management practices. This project offers such an opportunity with weekly sessions within a 6-week period and seeks to utilize a mix of methods to assist participants to deal with past trauma, improve their interpersonal communication skills and ability to manage conflict effectively.


Authors:  Matthew Davis, Interim Director of Composition; Bo Jimenez, Writing Center Co-Director; Eve Sorum, English Department Chair

Title: Teaching Writing Through Anti-Racist Practices

Description: This workshop event will welcome a speaker to UMass Boston’s campus to provide an anti-racist professional development to teachers and tutors of writing at the undergraduate and graduate levels, engaging English faculty across levels in reflecting on, rethinking, and transforming their course materials. Attendees will not only learn about research in anti-racist writing instruction but will also be provided space and time to revise course materials away from any embedded assumptions of white supremacist language practices and toward maximizing linguistic justice. In short, participants will leave the event with practical strategies for bringing an aspect of their course and/or their tutoring practice in line with anti-racist principles.


Authors: David Giessow, Senior Lecturer II, and Choral Director, Sommer Forrester, PhD, Associate Professor of Music

Title:  Put Their Names In The Air: Exploring the Intersection of Race, Incarceration, and the Arts

Description: Guest artists André de Quadros and Eric Anderson will collaborate with UMass Boston Chamber Singers and University Chorus to present a Lecture, Performance, and Discussion on Wednesday, April 13 at 2:00 PM in the Recital Hall. Eric Anderson is Director of Communications for the Transformational Prison Project. André de Quadros is the founding conductor of Voices 21C which is devoted to exercising the choral art in pursuit of human rights and justice. At Boston University he is Professor of Music, and Affiliate faculty in the African American Studies Center, Center for Antiracist Research, Initiative on Forced Migration and Human Trafficking, and the Prison Education Program, among other things.


Authors: Mona Abo-Zena and Lianna Pizzo (Department of Curriculum & Instruction) and Sun-Young Park (Communications Department) 

Title: Epilogue to taking steps to know + do better campaign: What kind of human do you want to be?

Description: This 12-week #KnowBetterDoBetter campaign brings a coalition of entities within and beyond the University of Massachusetts Boston to guide knowing + doing at personal, social, and structural levels.  The epilogue event will feature a short documentary of campaign related actions and highlight perspectives from representatives of CANALA institutes and other community and university members regarding ongoing goals in launching the next wave of this work/campaign.