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Marshall Represents

Marshall Represents

USC Marshall makes a strong showing at this year’s fifth annual USC Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Week.

USC DEI Week USC will host its fifth annual Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Week March 8-12—and the Marshall School of Business makes a strong showing in the programming.

Eight sessions over the course of the week are being taught by current and former Marshall staff, faculty, and alumni. These include courses in the language of inclusivity, social justice, tools for addressing micro aggressions, inclusive teaching techniques, and dealing with incivility in the workplace.

The Provost’s office, the host of USC’s DEI Week, sought programming proposals from throughout the USC community. The week’s slate of presentations and workshops is designed to appeal to a broad array of interests but are particularly aimed at administrators, faculty, alumni, and student leaders who can take the information and insights into their work with the wider community.

“Marshall’s strong showing at this year’s USC DEI Week is an indicator of the momentum DEI work is gaining at the school, as a priority of Dean Geoff Garrett,” said Patrick Cates, chief of staff for the Marshall dean. “Geoff is committed to ensuring that Marshall both demonstrates and teaches inclusive leadership across the board.”

That effort, he said, is bolstered by the efforts of the school’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, which has been growing its cadre of DEI Fellows, a group of faculty and staff committed to learning and employing best practices in inclusive teaching and management.

“DEI week is just the beginning,” said Cates. “There is so much more to come.”

Following is a schedule of Marshall-led sessions:

Click here for more information and registration information on all USC DEI Week, March 8-12, 2021.


Monday, March 8: Noon-2 pm: Inclusion Fellows: A Strategic Model to Build Organizational Capacity and Sustain DEI Efforts, with Dr. Sharoni Little.

This session is an interactive look into how Marshall’s ODEI developed its Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Fellows program to support the efforts of its office school-wide.  Dr. Little is the former vice dean for Marshall’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and professor of clinical business communication. She is currently head of global inclusion strategy at the Creative Artists Agency.


Monday, March 8: 2 pm-3 pm: Active Inclusive Teaching, with Lanore Larson.

Larson, educational program designer for Marshall Online Learning, is known as a teacher’s teacher. At Marshall, she works to ensure faculty have access to the latest in classroom and online teaching practices. This how-to workshop is an example of the latest research in specific teaching strategies to translate the theory of inclusion to active practices to address the inadvertent default of marginalization in the university classroom and beyond.


Monday, March 8:  5 pm-6 pm: Social Justice Unblocked: Activating your Allyship, with Bryanna Wallace ’19 and Autumn Gupta

Wallace is a recent alumna who last summer launched “Justice in June,” a response to ongoing systemic racism after George Floyd’s death. This session will detail the story of how Justice in June came to be, detail specific foundational tools to activate allyship, and offer a tangible three-week plan to take DEI Week to a month—and beyond.



Tuesday, March 9: 2 pm-4 pm: Crucial Conversations Framework: Creating Safe Spaces for Productive Dialogue, with Jody Tolan.

Tolan, an assistant professor of clinical management and organization, will discuss skills and strategies to help colleagues gain confidence to have safe dialogues and create an inclusive community of belonging and value.


Wednesday, March 10: 8 am-9 am: Workplace Incivility: Combatting and Coping, with Patrick Cates

This session will begin with a look at the problem of workplace incivility as explored by researchers. Participants will be invited to share their own experiences, and the session will end with concrete, research-based suggestions for combating and coping with incivility.  Cates, Marshall's chief of staff , is completing his Ed.D. in Organizational Change and Leadership from the Rossier School. His thesis investigates issues of workplace incivility in higher education.


Thursday, March 11: 11 am-Noon: Actionable Recommendations for an Anti-Racist and an Inclusive Remote Learning Environment, with Dr. Melissa Miller.

Miller is a USC librarian who teaches in Marshall’s Master of Management in Library and Information Science program. This talk will educate the MMLIS community with operational definitions and examples of current language related to anti-racism and diversity, equity, and inclusion.


Friday, March 12: 10 am-Noon: The Impact of Micro Aggressions: Tools to Address Bias and Behavior, with Kidogo Kennedy.

This interactive session will address strategies important for deepening awareness of bias in disparate forms, and provide tools to mitigate and lessen its effects. Kennedy is an adjunct professor of education at Rossier and clinical business communication at Marshall.


Friday, March 12: 10 am-Noon: Pain, Pitfalls, and Progress: The Journey of Leading Institutional Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion efforts, with Dr. Sharoni Little.