Service to Diversity
The Service to Diversity Commencement Reception is an opportunity for the Haverford community to thank graduating seniors for the work the have done over the course of their undergraduate careers to enhance the college's capacity to create and sustain inclusive community.
Each year, we ask the college community to recommend members of the senior class who have performed diligent community service; used their academic careers to study issues of social justice, identity or culture; and/or participated in co-curricular leadership and activism.
During the reception, each graduate is presented by a Haverford community member or someone from their graduation party. Graduates are then able to offer their own parting words to the community.
Service to Diversity Reception
Service to Diversity Reception 2019 Participants
International Students Orientation; Bi-Co Barkada Founder
I believe that inclusion is the embracing of each member’s individuality, beyond the affinity groups one identifies with. This means questioning stereotypes and checking them at the door. I understand that people have their own unique barriers that may get in the way of checking those preconceived notions, especially if they themselves are part of an already marginalized group. Understanding one’s own personal biases might not immediately enable them to include someone from outside their affinity group, but it can help in accepting members within the affinity group who do not share those biases.
Honor Council Co-Head; Customs Folk; Math Inclusion & Diversity Committee
Inclusion is the active process of accepting, validating, and seeking to understand the identities of others. To be an inclusive community means that both the institution and the individuals within it engage with and continue to improve at this process of inclusion.
Pan-Asian Resource Center (PARC) Co-Founder; Hurford Center Fellow; Customs Folk; Admissions Office Access & Diversity Intern
While inclusion is often discussed and paired with diversity, my definition of inclusion recognizes its power to radically include and create spaces of comfort and bravery for people from traditionally underrepresented and marginalized backgrounds. To simply be diverse is never enough; we must also constantly strive towards questioning whose voices are at the table, and whose aren't, and that there is continuous and intentional programming, support, and resources.
Carol Lee Diallo
Summer Social Justice Institute; Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellow; International Students Orientation; Mixed Identity Alliance (MIA) Co-Head; Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Intern
I define inclusion as all the people in a given space/setting feeling able to participate/engage with others in the space (if they choose to do), because they genuinely feel that their ideas, perspectives, and positionalities will be fully considered and respected. Furthermore, I think that inclusion must consider the variety of ways in which people participate and engage- through spoken words, written words, listening, etc. Inclusion can only occur when everyone feels like they have an equal place "at the table", and feels able to bring their full identities to that space without fear of feeling marginalized/othered.
Writing Center; Customs Folk; Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Intern
I think that inclusion is an ongoing process. It requires us to critically reflect upon the ways the spaces we occupy and create might exclude, silence, or hurt. It asks us to constantly reconfigure these spaces in ways that incorporate a multiplicity of needs, experiences, and perspectives.
Office of Multicultural Affairs Intern; Students’ Council Co-President; Summer Institute for Social Justice; Customs Folk; Sons of Africa; Community Conversations, Actionable Solutions; Sons Uniting, Revolutionizing Goals of Excellence Mentorship Program (SURGE); Discourse on Discourse Committee; Drinker Ad Hoc Committee
Work surrounding inclusion, in my mind, must have two central goals. The first is to create a diverse community of individuals where inclusion is implicit in the fabric of the group. The second is to cultivate both the culture as well as the requisite infrastructure (clubs, offices, support) necessary to adequately support that diverse community such that all of its members have the resources they need to thrive. Only if both of these goals are met can a community be considered genuinely inclusive.
QuestBridge President; International Students Orientation; Customs Folk; MAST Tutor; Puentes de Salud Volunteer; Hospice Volunteer; Institute for East African Councils on Higher Education
For me, inclusion goes beyond opening doors to just let more people in, it means redefining structures and pre-established groups to include new identities. It requires assessment of what we define as status quo and our definition of who is deserving of value to include as many identities (especially those that are historically underrepresented) as possible.
Let's Circle Up; Customs Folk; Feminists United; Rethink Incarceration
For me, inclusion means that spaces are created with the intention of making all people feel safe. To truly include people, the goal should be to create the material and affective conditions that will allow them to grow and be their best selves.
Summer Institute for Social Justice; Customs Folk; South Asian Society (SAS); The Spectrum; Peer Tutor; Best Buddies Haverford Chapter; 8th Dimension; The Women*s Center; Feminists United
I define inclusion in my own bodily experience. My throat tightens up, my shoulders tense, my eyes open wider, my stomach feels queasy, and my feet tingle as I step into a space where I know I am not intentionally welcome or counted. On the other hand, I step lightly, move further into the space, sit in a chair cross-legged: comfortable in my ancestry. I feel warmth in my arms, comfort in my shoulders, and calm in my body in a space where I know I am not only accepted, but also valued.
Summer Social Justice Institute; Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellow; QuestBridge; Black Students League (BSL); Sons Uniting, Revolutionizing Goals of Excellence Mentorship Program (SURGE); Students’ Council Officer of Multiculturalism; Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Intern
My definition of inclusion is creating a space where an individual's entire self is able to flourish. It's important to note that this is not a static space, that this is a space that is always become, a space that is always creating. Inclusion is therefore not a static goal to be reach, but a process that involves all members in the community to engage in.
Summer Social Justice Institute; QuestBridge; Customs Co-Head, Students’ Council Officer of Campus Life; Task Force on Student Work and Engagement; Prevention Point Volunteer
Inclusion means that every voice, every opinion, and every feeling can be safely and comfortable expressed; these voices, opinions and feelings will be heard. I don't understand inclusion to mean that every voice is validated or agreed upon. Instead, inclusion to me means that each voice, opinion, and feeling is given the chance to be safely expressed and the people at the table attempt to understand where that person is coming from. Inclusion means that differing opinions and ideas are handled respectfully, and that there is respect to allow for a conversation.
Students' Council Co-Treasurer; Honor Council; Customs Folk; QuestBridge; Summer Social Justice Institute; Student Life Office Intern; Admissions Office Access & Diversity Intern
To me, inclusion is the ongoing process of creating spaces of safety where all people, regardless of their background, are given a voice and provided with a sense of belonging in a community.
QuestBridge; Chesick Scholar; Customs Folk; Center for Peace and Global Citizenship (CPGC) Intern; Womxn of Color Co-Head; Haverford Liaison for Migrant Rights Coalition
My definition of inclusion operates under the understanding that while these spaces never envisioned us being here, we are here and we have to work to take care of one another and support one another through the failures and victories.
QuestBridge; Chesick Scholar; Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellow; Customs Folk; Office of Academic Resources (OAR) Intern; Womxn of Color Co-Head; Team Leader at Puentes hacia el futuro; Migration & Borders 360 Program
I understand inclusion as the process of creating a space that feels safe and inviting for people with multiple experiences and perspectives to engage with. In line with my theory of change, this is a slow process because it necessitates commitment and trust. Effective and active inclusion relies on people's ability to communicate one's love and cariño (care).
QuestBridge; Chesick Scholar; Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellow; Customs Folk; Summer Social Justice Institute; Students’ Council Co-President; Sons of Africa; Community Conversations, Actionable Solutions; Sons Uniting, Revolutionizing Goals of Excellence Mentorship Program (SURGE); Community Conversations, Actionable Solutions; Horizons Leadership Program Sons of Africa Co-Head; Committee on Student Standing and Programs; Presidential Search Committee
Inclusion means not only everyone physically having space at the same table, but being considered with the amount of care and empathy necessary to support and help mitigate former exclusion. It's not a specific destination, but inclusion is a journey, a framework for thinking about the work I do to make sure that those that don't feel heard, are heard.
Bible Study; Black Students League (BSL); Office of Academic Resources (OAR) Intern; Commencement Senior Class Speaker
For me, the first level of inclusion involves the acceptance and deliberate involvement of individuals of various experiences, races, and faith practices amongst other things in all spaces. Inclusion also demands the creation of structures that allow individuals within these spaces not only to exist but to thrive and achieve their full potentials.
Inclusion, therefore, is more than verbose theory or cold policies invented to uplift the faces of our institutions and communities. True inclusion stems from a place of a genuine desire to see everyone allowed to be their best selves in every space.
Office of Quaker Affairs Intern; Women's March; White Privilege Conference; March for Our Lives; Friends Committee on National Legislation's Spring Lobby Weekend; Earth Quaker Action Team; Customs Folk; Summer Social Justice Institute; Honor Council; Special Plenary Committee Co-Head
Inclusion is the act of creating spaces where people feel empowered to be their authentic selves.
Summer Social Justice Institute; Customs Folk; Admissions Office Access & Diversity Intern; Existence as Resistance; Quaker Bouncers; Sons Uniting, Revolutionizing Goals of Excellence Mentorship Program (SURGE)
Inclusion for me means centering or raising the voice and actions of those who have been historically marginalized or ignored throughout much of history, followed by actions to support them concretely. For instance, in Latinx conversations in the United States, this means centering folks from Central or South America, who are LGBTQ+ and are Black or Indigenous. Not including them in our conversations is missing a crucial part of our identity. However, others then need to actively ensure that their needs are met to bring about equality or justice.
International Students Orientation; Customs Folk; Quaker House
Inclusion is NOT about welcoming people from other cultural groups to adopt the dominant culture. Inclusion is about changing the dominant culture and incorporating diverse cultural elements so that people from other cultural background do not need to experience acculturation anymore.