Connect April2002 by tX3sBy


									The Connect                                                                 April, 2002
The Diversity Newsletter of the School of Allied Health Sciences – East Carolina

WHAT DO WE NEED TO BRING                             the minds of an ECU student, one student in particular
                                                     presented his opinions in an eloquent fashion. He read
ABOUT A TRULY DIVERSE                                his opinion as an essay and has the audience
COMMUNITY IN THE SCHOOL OF                           captivated.
                                                     We are publishing this essay not only to honor Ron
One of the ideas that the Task Force on              Pickett, graduate student in the Department of Physical
Diversity has tried to communicate through           Therapy, but also to let those of you who did not hear
various School of Allied Health Sciences             Ron speak know of the great ideas that Ron proposes
programming, both educational seminars and           we all need to adopt. His thoughts are careful and
The Connect, is that a diverse community             cutting-edge; his words are caring, yet straight-
doesn’t mean that we need to have more               forward. The Task Force on Diversity believes that if
“minorities” in the populations of students,         you read this essay in its entirety, you will have a new
staff, and faculty. But rather, a diverse            and/or stronger understanding of the mission of the
community is one that is a comfortable,              Task Force on Diversity and the SAHS as a whole. As
welcoming one to any and all individuals. It is      you read this, we hope you are as proud of Ron as the
a society that is open to difference and even        Task Force is…he represents all of our students. His
celebrates it while at the same time is still able   essay should give you hope that we are educating some
to see similarities. The word “inclusion” or         of the best students!
“inclusivity” has appeared many times
throughout the various Connect issues in the
past 3 years. This word is used to promote the
idea that the School of Allied Health Sciences
needs to become a place in which all persons,
no matter what race, gender, color, ethnicity,
political affiliation, religion, or sexual
orientation feel welcome, respected, and equal.
It is this idea of an inclusive and diverse
community that we have been striving to
develop and maintain in the School of Allied
Health Sciences (SAHS).

Many of you may remember the panel
discussion we held last October entitled,            Mr. Ron Pickett, Graduate Student, Department of
“Facilitating Success in A Diverse Student           Physical Therapy
Body.” We had three SAHS students and
three professionals from campus discuss their        Congratulations Ron on a wonderful contribution to
roles in facilitating success. The three             the staff, students, and faculty of SAHS!
professionals discussed their roles on campus        As you read Ron’s essay on the following page, you
and how they come in contact daily with              just may find the answer to the tough question: What
diverse students and the kinds of issues they        do we need to bring about a truly diverse community
believe diverse students are experiencing.           in the School of Allied Health Sciences?
Many agreed that the most exciting part of the
panel discussion was when we had 3 students
stand up and speak about their experiences of
being an individual of color at ECU and in the
SAHS. Although all the students were
excellent and provided wonderful insight into
                                                                                                   page 1
Facilitating Success with a Diverse
Student Body
By Ron Pickett, Graduate Student
Department of Physical Therapy, East Carolina University

How can we “Facilitate Success with a Diverse Student Body?” Well to begin with, before we can “facilitate
success with a diverse student body,” We must be able to “facilitate interest in diverse human thinking.” And
having this Panel discussion is a good start in doing so. We have host of people, from various backgrounds, here
to give a variety of perspectives on “promoting success for a diverse student population.”

Today, I would like to focus on 2 things that are imperative to cultivating success among persons from different
backgrounds and among people in general. 1: Good communication , 2: Developing the Virtue of Selflessness.
Lets look into each of these factors.

Acquiring good communication skills is key to promoting achievement for a diverse student population, as a
matter of fact, it’s the key to success in a host of things, ranging from marriage, parenting, working, teaching,
etc…. Why is this? Because the success of any person is dependent on human interaction, their ability to
respectfully convey their ideas and feelings to another person. You won’t find too many persons, contemporary
or historically, that were successful, but lacked the ability to effectively interact or communicate with others.

So how can we begin to effectively communicate with others? Does it begin with perfect utilization of the
“King’s English?” How about the inundating of ones speech with GRE vocabulary? While the value of the
previously mentioned can be a plus to any person’s repertoire, they by no means surpass the quality of showing
genuine “concern for your fellowman and his or her feelings” when you interact. For example, you can have 2
college level English 101 professors, that are married, each thoroughly proficient in word usage and rhetoric.
But what if in this relationship, there is no sincere concern shown for the others person’s perspectives or feelings
during interaction. We can see that this would place a colossal barrier between the two; Impeding
communication and their ability to achieve success, despite how well they “grammatical spoke.” So it can be
seen how “concern for others” is crucial for communication. But this noble gesture of showing “concern for
others,” requires a degree of “selflessness,” would you not agree?

“Selflessness” is another crucial element for “facilitating success amongst diverse people.” Really, selflessness
can be placed at the nucleus of promoting human achievement. How can a person truly begin to help anyone, if
they have a self-centered demeanor? The “Me-First” attitude has tends to promote the inhibition of human
success on an individual and global scale. Throughout history, from antiquity to the present, a countless number
of human atrocities have stemmed from egotism, on the part of persons and even societies. Tyranny, oppression,
disparity in the distribution of natural resources, all progeny of “self-centeredness.” Although destructive, this
fatal flaw of egotism can be neutralized by the virtue of “selflessness.” The quality of being “unselfish” really
beautifies the person who possesses it. Just think, is it not a pleasure to be around a person who displays an
altruistic attitude? A person who shows genuine interest in your ideas, the things that you do, and say; while not
placing their concerns, ideas, or beliefs over those of yours or others. Also, someone who is not easily offended,
because they don’t place their feelings above those of others, being peaceable. The promotion of such a quality
truly encourages the intellectual development of all involved parties, thus promoting success.

In conclusion, we see that both factors, good communication and selflessness, are closely related and dependent
on one another. The cultivating of both qualities will construct a strong foundation, to build success for not only
the “diverse study body” but also the “diverse human planet.”

                                                                                                      page 2
                                                     empowerment and affect positive health behavior changes.
Culturally Sensitive
                                                     Dr. Hudson created his medical publishing company because he
Resources for                                        feels that, right now, there are no other resources available in
                                                     America that specifically talk to African American men about
African American                                     health issues in a culturally sensitive and responsible way.
                                                     Surprisingly, there are no books written for the lay Black public on
Men                                                  hypertension, even though it is the number one killer of African
                                                     Americans. The fact that the entire development and publication
                                                     process is done by Black professionals makes it more likely that the
From: B. S. Scott, “Talking with Dr. Hilton M.       information will be heeded and that the inherent mistrust of the
Hudson About The Black Man’s Guide to                medical system by many African Americans may be diminished.
Good Health.” Closing the Gap: A Newsletter
of the Office of Minority Health, U.S.               Hudson Publishing has printed The Heart of the Matter on
Department of Health and Human Services;             hypertension for African Americans and The Black Man’s Guide to
September/October 2001, pp. 4-5.                     Good Health on multiple morbidities found disproportionately in
                                                     African American men. The next book to be printed is
Dr. Hilton M. Hudson, II, a Black physician,         8 Weeks to Better Health: Weight Loss for African American
launched a publishing company to specifically        Women. In development is a book on sickle cell anemia with
address the need for culturally sensitive books      culturally-specific interventions to lessen the disease
to help Black men stay healthy. Dr. Hudson           manifestations. A book on AIDS, written by Dr. Eric Goosby
started Hudson Publishing Company in 1997,           (former director of the White House Office of National AIDS
with the intent of bringing reliable information     Policy) is being written for all minorities, with information on
not only to African Americans, but to other          culturally-specific behaviors and beliefs that can be changed to
underserved communities as well.                     lessen the spread of the virus.
As most of us know, Black men are                    Dr. Hudson’s company is also working on a book on cultural
disproportionately affected by nearly all causes     competence for doctors and other front line health care
of mortality – cancer, heart disease,                professionals. The book contains specific information on how to
hypertension, kidney disease, accidental death.      address cultural differences in how you counsel and educate
Black men die sooner than any other                  patients. For example, most diabetic and healthy heart diets are
epidemiological category of men in the U.S. In       written to address the diet of non-African Americans, non-Latinos,
fact, for Black men, the disease statistics in the   and non-Asians. How do you counsel a 70-year old, poor Latino
U.S. are similar to some underdeveloped              patient who has hypertension and diabetes and whose diet consists
nations.                                             largely of fried plantains and refried beans? This book will address
                                                     such issues that arise in the daily practice of many physicians.
Dr. Hudson believes that these sad statistics are
because Black men as a group don’t take care         For more information on resources from the Hudson Publishing
of themselves, that they have lost their sense of    Company, write to: P.O. Box 737, Roscoe, IL 61073, call 815-885-
pride and self-love. The books that are              1070, or go to
produced by Hudson publishing are meant to
provide factual information in a cultural
context for African Americans and to help
Black men regain that pride and self-respect.
All the books published by Dr. Hudson are
written by Black physicians and edited by
Black experts, and produced by Black
journalists and writers.

Dr. Hudson believes that the best way to get
Black men and women to their doctors for
preventive and illness care is to educate them.
Black physicians and other health professionals
can increase the awareness bar and demystify
medicine. This can create a sense of personal

                                                                                                     page 3
                                                     year old white insurance salesman”. Furthermore, he
Language,                                            describes the problems he has had in childhood and
                                                     adulthood because he is not able to “talk black”.
Dialect, and                                         This aspect of the interview fascinated me because it
                                                     underscored the significant role played by language
Race: An                                             and dialect in shaping not only who we are but also
                                                     in how others perceive us. Diversity, then, not only
African- American                                    includes differences in how we look but in how we
Scholar’s Point
of View                                              I recommend listening to this interview with Dr.
                                                     McWhorter and reflecting on his fresh stance on
Submitted by Paul Bell                               issues such as language, race, and diversity. The link
                                                     to the NPR web page with his interview is
I was sitting in my car at a stoplight recently
listening to the National Public Radio (NPR) talk    mcwhorter
show, Fresh Air, with Terry Gross. She had a
fascinating guest on by the name of John             ate Professor of Linguistics at the University of
McWhorter. Dr. McWhorter is an associate             California Berkeley, he is the author of The Power
professor of linguistics at the University of        of Babel. (2002). The book examines the
California at Berkley. In addition to writing        predictability and patterns of change in languages
                                                     and grammar. He was widely consulted by the
works related to socio-linguistics and language
                                                     media during the 1997 Oakland Ebonics debate
changes, he has also authored works concerning       and is the author of The Word on the Street, a
his views of racism in America.                      book about Black English. He is also author of
                                                     Losing the Race: Self-Sabotage in Black America.
This particular interview began with a discussion    His writing has appeared in The New Republic,
of his opinion concerning the use of Ebonics or      The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal
Black English in the public schools to educate
African-American children, but then progressed       Associate Professor of Linguistics at the University
to his controversial views about race and racism     of California Berkeley, he is the author of The
                                                     Power of Babel. (2002). The book examines the
in America. His ideas are contained in his
                                                     predictability and patterns of change in languages
book: Losing the Race: Self Sabotage in Black        and grammar. He was widely consulted by the
America. He lays out his arguments as to why he      media during the 1997 Oakland Ebonics debate
believes that white racism is no longer the main     and is the author of The Word on the Street, a
obstacle to black success and achievement in this    book about Black English. He is also author of
country. He blames, rather, what he calls the        Losing the Race: Self-Sabotage in Black America.
“cult of victimology, an emphasis on separatism,     His writing has appeared in The New Republic,
                                                     The Washington Post, and The Wall Street Journal
and a tendency towards anti-intellectualism
within the Africa-American community that
holds back African-Americans”. These are
thought provoking stands made all the more
controversial because Dr. McWhorter is himself
an African- American.

Admittedly, this came as a surprise to me, the
listener, because he did not sound “black”. I feel
that I am allowed to say this because at one point
in the interview Dr. McWhorter states that, “and
whenever I try to say “man” I sound like a fifty

                                                                                            page 4
New School Code                                 committee will take place in the near future.
                                                The new Diversity Committee already has
Means Changes for                               several tasks it will begin tackling when it
                                                convenes in July for the first time. Overall, the
Task Force On                                   main charge of the Diversity Committee is to
Diversity                                       ensure implementation and evaluation of the
                                                School’s Diversity Action Plan takes place.
On March 21, 2002, the tenured faculty in       (You can review the Diversity Action Plan on
the School of Allied Health Science             the web at This
(SAHS) voted to pass the proposed               includes maintaining 3-4 issues of The Connect
changes to the School code. This included       per academic year, planning and implementing
an item which proposed turning the Task         casual educational opportunities such as the
Force on Diversity into a standing              Diversity Dialogues series, planning and
committee, the Diversity Committee. If the      implementing more structured educational
code changes proceed through the                programs, and assisting departments with
appropriate university Committees, staring      improved faculty and student recruitment.
with the next academic year (July 1, 2002)
the Task Force on Diversity will no longer      One of the newest roles for the Diversity
exist. Rather, the Diversity Committee will     Committee assigned by Interim Dean Steve
be in place along with the other SAHS           Thomas is the development of a mentoring
committees such as the Honors & Awards          program. Dr. Thomas has informed Kathy
Committee, the Student-Faculty                  Treole, chair of the Task Force for 2001-2002,
Committee and the Elections Committee.          that AHEC has funds available for SAHS to use
The changes to the code include that each       in a mentoring capacity. This can include
department shall have one representative        faculty mentoring off-campus professionals to
on the committee (CSDI, PTHE, OCCT,             encourage them to become clinical supervisors
PACH, CLSC, BIOS, HIMA, REHB).                  for the various programs in the School,
There are also auxiliary members of the         facilitating their enrollment into our School’s
committee that are invited on an as needed      PhD programs, or possibly for hire as on-campus
basis including individuals from AHEC           staff or faculty. Another aspect of the mentoring
and assistance from the Dean’s Office.          program may be to assist high school students in
                                                making the decision to enter the allied health
When planning for this major change, the        professions through enrolling in the
members of the Task Force on Diversity          undergraduate programs in our School. The
believed strongly that new members to the       funds from AHEC can be used in a variety of
new committee should be phased in slowly        ways to enhance a diverse education in all the
to ensure continuity of the missions and        professions in SAHS.
programs created by the original Task
Force. To this end, three of the current        What can you do? Consider nominating yourself
eight members will depart the committee at      to serve on the new Diversity Committee if your
the end of the year; this will leave openings   department is one with an opening. The
in the slots for the following departments:     members of the Task Force have been serving
HIMA, REHB, OCCT, BIOS. The                     for three years and can let you know about the
following Task Force members will               duties and responsibilities of various members.
continue on the new committee: Kathy            Also, if you have a specific interest in working
Treole, chair (CSDI), Rick Bamberg,             on the Mentoring Subcommittee, please contact
(CLSC), Lori Tracy, (PTHE) and Dody             Kathy Treole (
McMillen (PACH). Elections for the new

                                                                                       page 5
Task Force On Diversity In Review
What has the Task Force on Diversity accomplished since it was created in 1998 by then
Dean Harold Jones? Here are the highlights of the activities that have been brought to the
students, staff, and faculty of SAHS. This list does not include the extensive hours of
education each task force member has obtained including attending cultural diversity
conferences, serving on other ECU diversity committees, and other information gathering
activities. Your Task Force has been eating, breathing, & sleeping diversity!

      An extensive Diversity Action Plan was developed and endorsed by Administrative
      Two faculty members, Kathy Treole and Rick Bamberg, are now diversity trainers
       qualified to develop and teach a day-long orientation to diversity, culture and other
       related topics.
      An introductory orientation to exploring your own cultural assumptions was provided
       by Harold Straeker, PA, in October 2000.
      An advanced session on diversity goal-setting for the diversity action plan was held
       for the chairs of the personnel committees, chairs of departments, and the Task Force.
       This led to the final draft of the Diversity Action Plan for the School.
      6 issues of The Connect have been disseminated providing staff and faculty with
       resources to facilitate adoption of diversity principles and practices.
      Two panel discussions have been held – one focusing on student success and one
       focusing on legal aspects of recruiting in a diverse society.
      Two Diversity Dialogues have been scheduled – and well attended – one by Charlene
       Dienes of the School of Medicine and one by Marty Chapin, REHB.
      Along with AHEC, area high schools, and other NC universities, a Health Careers
       Opportunities Program (HCOP) grant was submitted to obtain funding for a
       comprehensive education and recruiting program to encourage high school students to
       enter the health professions.

                      Keep your fingers crossed!
             We should be hearing soon about whether or
                       not our Health Careers
            Opportunity Program (HCOP) grant was funded!

                                                                                       page 6

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