Photo Feature: DEI Munch & Learn series

This past year, the Office of DEI Education and Outreach launched The Division of DEI Presents: DEI Munch & Learn series focused on ​educating and celebrating ​heritage ​and ​identity-centric ​months celebrated at UCCS.

This series had three key components: an interactive presentation led by an expert from our UCCS community exploring history and importance of that heritage/identity group, collaborative discussions centered around food, and sharing resource to encourage ongoing learning and engagement.  

This year’s DEI Munch & Learn series featured: 

  • Latinx Heritage Month with Julie Torres from the Women’s & Ethnic Studies Department 
  • LGBTQ+ History Month with Tre Wentling from the Women’s & Ethnic Studies Department 
  • Disability Awareness Month with panelist Ida Dilwood from Disability Services, Keith Kutnar from the Wellness Center, student Taylor Vallance, and alumni Serina Gilbert
  • Native & Indigenous Heritage Month with Ilaheva Tua’one from the Women’s & Ethnic Studies Department 
  • Black Heritage Month with Michael Ferguson from the English Department 
  • Women’s History Month with panelist Nancy Hernandez from Pre-Collegiate, Yvonne Wu from the Music Department, Sarah Long from the College of Education, Nicole Simmon-Rochon from the Division of DEI, and Catherine Barrios from the Career Center
  • Arab American Heritage Month with Vice Chancellor Hanna from the Division of DEI and Carole Woodall from the History Department
  • Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Heritage Month with George Bayuga from the Department of Anthropology

Throughout the series, over 200 faculty, staff and students actively engaged in discussions, shared meals, and deepened their understanding of diverse cultures and perspectives. Participants left each session with renewed motivation to continue their learning journey and resources to foster inclusive environments at UCCS. A few takeaways from some of the participants: 

“One takeaway is that I do have much to learn. Attending the event certainly provided me with an appreciation of the different cultures and perspectives that were introduced during the discussion.” 

“Love love love the representation on this panel of AMAZING women!” 

“Relevant content, relatable presenter, and renewed sense of agency.”  

“The presenters were amazing and really ignited me to learn more. My biggest takeaway from the training was that motivation to do more learning on my own.” 

In addition to the monthly programs, the Office of DEI Education and Outreach developed educational resources for each month. These resource pages ​feature ​everything from podcasts, films and poems to articles, ​local ​businesses and other ​organizations. The goal of these resources was to create ongoing engagement and learning about these cultural and social groups. During each session, the Kraemer Family Library also provided a curated sample of their collection that centered on each heritage and identity centric month. 

All the Heritage and Identity Centric Resource Pages can be found on the Division of DEI website.

There is one final Munch & Learn for this academic year. Join the Office of DEI Education and Outreach on Monday, June 17 for the Juneteenth Munch & Learn and check out the DEI Munch & Learn Series when we come back this fall.