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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion icon

The DEI Task Force, with guidance from the DEI Advisory Group, organizes seminars and events that speak to our community. Through our programs, we wish to provide a space where everyone can bring their unique perspectives and help the IGB become more welcoming and inclusive.

Lunchbox Series

The Lunchbox is an event series centered on food that consists of monthly seminars from Illinois faculty, staff, and community members that are paired with special meals prepared by chefs at Bevier Café. Through a universal appreciation for food, the program seeks to create an inclusive community that encompasses people from different cultural backgrounds.

Lunchbox Series

Wikipedia Edit-a-Thon

Women and other underrepresented groups have made significant contributions in STEM and yet their online visibility remains disproportionately low. To address this disparity, the IGB hosted an edit-a-thon that spanned the 2023 Fall semester. Together, we created and/or edited 83 articles, added 17.3K words to existing pages, added 233 new citations, and uploaded 22 new images.

Wikipedia editathon

IGB Climate Survey

In Fall 2021, the IGB Committee on Diversity Task Force conducted a survey aimed at understanding the current work environment of the IGB, with the goal of identifying ways to improve the experience of our IGB community. Based on the answers, the IGB leadership began discussing new initiatives that can be established to improve the work environment.

IGB Climate Survey

DEI Seminars

The DEI Task Force helps organize talks aimed at increasing awareness and dialogue. Previous seminars have addressed the importance of DEI and accessibility in strengthening STEM communities, the significance and efforts to preserving Hawai’i’s sacred site, strategies for advancing health equity through community engagement and anti-racism, and how science institutions can increase accessibility for the disabled.


Documentary Screening and Q&A

Award-winning directors Ian Cheney and Sharon Shattuck broke new ground by releasing their new full-length documentary film, Picture a Scientist, on virtual theater screens across North America. The independent documentary follows researchers who are writing a new chapter for women scientists. IGB hosted a virtual screening of the documentary followed by a virtual Q&A with Ian Cheney.

DEI Programs Picture a Scientist

DEI Workshop Series

The DEI Task Force organized an ally/bystander intervention training workshop for all IGB community members. Training in this particular area was heavily requested by many at the IGB, including faculty and postdoctoral researchers. Participants learned skills that they could use for promoting fairness in the workplace.

DEI Workshop Series

Town Hall Meeting on DEI

The IGB held a town hall meeting to introduce new changes to improve diversity and inclusion. Faculty, staff, postdoctoral researchers, and students weighed in on proposed changes. The meeting was led by IGB Director Gene Robinson, Director of Campus Culture and Climate Kaamilyah Abdullah-Span, and Co-chairs of the DEI Task Force Julia Pollack and Sara Pedron-Haba.

Town Hall Meeting.


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