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A preview of Monday’s SEAT at the Table panels and speakers

Amanda Hitchcock

A project multiple years in the making has finally come to fruition.

Aiming to educate its student body and continue the conversation towards social justice, Springfield College is hosting aaims to educate the student body with a week-long program called SEAT at The Table — Social Justice, Equity, Accountability and Transformation — put together by the Office of Multicultural Affairs.

The event kicks off Sunday October 25 with a keynote speaker, then daily Zoom sessions starting Monday.

Student Trustee elect Sabrina Williams, who  works in the Multicultural Affairs office, is hosting an event on Colorism in Popular Media with Ja’Naya Ashley. 

“Definitely come, the SEAT program will be educational to everyone. It is not geared towards a specific type of person, everyone can learn something different . There are so many different topics they had to extend it an extra day,” said Williams.

The SEAT at the Table events cover several different aspects of race and equality.

Dr. Patrick Love will kick off Monday’s slate with an event entitled, White People, Teach Thyself. It is important for white people to educate themselves on the experiences of BIPOC people without forcing them to recount their experiences. This session will share and discuss strategies for educating yourself on those experiences. 

 Exploring Racial Trauma & Black Mental Health Panel Discussion is the second event to kick off the week. This panel will discuss racial trauma and explore steps to take to intervene in racist systems that negatively affect the mental health of Black Americans. 

Language Judgment as (Micro)Aggressions follows, facilitated by Ja’Naya Ashley, Angelica Core, George Kelly and Rebecca Lartigue. The participants will learn how to commit to being respectful of people’s language variety including grammar, pronunciation and “correctness.”

Jazz Fusion is a program that is part of a series called “Dancers Against Racism: Move for the Movement”.  Facilitators Brittany Monachino and Sarah Zehnder will teach a movement then host a conversation about racism and how dancing helped Monachino cope with her past experiences.

The next session, Expanding Our Thinking About White Racism, facilitated by Micheal D’Andrea, will go over four different types of racism. It will also guide participants to experience an expansion in their thinking about racism with examples in social, economic and political settings. 

The concluding event of SEAT for Monday October 26th is Mediation and Hip-Hop: Contemplating Consciousness. The facilitators of this event are Nadia Salett and Jonathan Perlow.  This event will show what a typical session of Mediation and Hip-Hop looks like — a class that has started Spring 2019.

The first day of SEAT at the Table is just the tip of the iceberg of this week’s long educational program about shaping the community into a better and safer environment for all of the Springfield College students and staff. 

Photo: Office of Multicultural Affairs

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