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UWRF Staff Receive UW System Grants

By Lacy Lukaszewicz
University Communications

MARCH 27, 2009-- The University Wisconsin System Institute on Race and Ethnicity has awarded grants to three individuals at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. The grants will be used to produce reading seminars that will focus on diversity issues.

Mary Manke, associate dean in the College of Education and Professional Studies and Todd Savage, an assistant professor in the department of counseling and school psychology, received one of the grants.

Manke and Savage co-wrote a grant with the goal of informing "future educators and current faculty about issues of language and how teachers treat and deal with students of other languages." Books selected include "The Skin That We Speak" by Lisa Delpit, and "We Can't Teach What We Don't Know--White Teachers, Multiracial Schools" by Gary Howard. "The goal is to think about issues for future teachers and educators, who they are now and how they will work with students and family of different backgrounds," said Savage.

Cyndi Kernahan, an associate professor in the department of psychology, received a grant to incorporate the book, "White Like Me" by Tim Wise into a seminar related to the University's new Social Justice Series. Wise will speak as part of that series and the UWRF Wyman Series on March 31 at 8 p.m. in the North Hall Auditorium. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for ages 6-18 and free for UWRF students as well as children under the age of 5.

Linda Alvarez, an associate in the UWRF Global Connections Office, received an individual grant for the book, "It's the Little Things - Everyday Interactions that Anger, Annoy and Divide the Races," by Lena Williams. "Readers of different ethnicities, international students, administrators, faculty and staff will create a safe environment where we can get clarity on sensitive issues," says Alvarez. She says she hopes "to increase diversity in all of its many manifestations because we know that a diverse learning environment enriches our educational experience."

The UW System Institute on Race and Ethnicity serves as a catalyst for scholarly research and curricular innovations in racial and ethnic studies. Its purpose is to support faculty, staff and students through grants, events, publications, and other scholarly activities. The Institute is unique in that it is the only scholarly institute on racial and ethnic studies, which is system-wide and serves all the state's campuses.


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