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Kansas State University

Featured Speakers

October 29-30, 2012

Dr. Irving P. McPhail
President & Chief Executive Officer
National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, Inc. (NACME)
Dr. Loreto R. Prieto
Director of US Latino/a Studies Program at Iowa State University
Dr. Wm. Gregory Sawyer
Vice President for Student Affairs at California State University Channel Islands

Dr. Irving P. McPhail

Bio:
Irving Pressley McPhail was named the sixth president and Chief Executive Officer of the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, Inc. (NACME) on September 1, 2009 (www.nacme.org). He joined NACME in 2007 as executive vice president and Chief Operating Officer. Prior to that, he founded and served as principal of The McPhail Group LLC. He served 15 years as a college president or chancellor at The Community College of Baltimore County, St. Louis Community College at Florissant Valley, and LeMoyne-Owen College. Dr. McPhail also served as Chief Operating Officer of the Baltimore City Public Schools. He has held tenured full professorships at three colleges and universities, and served as an affiliate or visiting professor at the University of Maryland at College Park, the University of Pennsylvania, and Morgan State University. Working at the nexus of practice, policy, and research in literacy education, post-secondary student success, community college leadership, and STEM education, Dr. McPhail is the co-editor of Teaching African American Learners to Read: Perspectives and Practices, published by the International Reading Association in 2005, and the author of more than 50 journal articles, chapters, monographs, and technical reports. He earned a bachelor's degree in development sociology at Cornell University and a master's degree in reading at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He earned the doctorate in reading/language arts at the University of Pennsylvania as a National Fellowships Fund Fellow. He was awarded the Honorary Doctor of Engineering degree at the 155th Commencement of Polytechnic Institute of New York University on May 18, 2010. Dr. McPhail was an American Council on Education Fellow in Academic Administration at The Johns Hopkins University, and he completed the Presidents Academy Summer Institute at the American Association of Community Colleges and the Institute for Educational Management at Harvard University. Dr. McPhail serves on the board of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers Education Foundation and the National Council on Black American Affairs/ Northeast Region [an affiliate council of the American Association of Community Colleges].

Leading Change in the College Curriculum: A Tribute to Tilford Initiatives in the State of Kansas

Abstract:
Abstract: As the President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, Dr. McPhail has visited many campuses across the United States, working with them to improve the recruitment, retention, and graduation of multicultural students. His talk will address the transformative power of a multicultural curriculum and how the existence and strength of multicultural education is a key indicator of how culturally competent a campus is. Presentation topics will include: (1) the merits of diversity and equity in American higher education at a time when serious challenges are being leveled by Grutter vs. Texas; (2) the "New" American dilemma and workforce implications of multicultural under-representation; (3) resources to enhance multicultural curriculum transformation; (4) the status of research in curriculum reform; and (5) the documented impact of multicultural curriculum transformation. This talk will set the stage for the remaining keynote speakers and workshop presenters, as we strive to enhance our ability to create, "the culturally competent campus."

Presenting: Monday October 29th at the K-State Alumni Center

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Dr. Loreto R. Prieto

Bio:
Loreto R. Prieto is a Full Professor of Psychology and the Director of US Latino/a Studies at Iowa State University. He earned his undergraduate and doctoral degrees at The University of Iowa, in 1984 & 1996, respectively. He is also a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (APA) in both Divisions 2 (Teaching) and 17 (Counseling). Loreto has over 140 scholarly publications and presentations to his credit, as well as two books, with his work centering largely on the interface of pedagogy and issues of cultural diversity. He has taught multicultural/diversity courses in undergraduate and graduate psychology and education curricula, and created Iowa State University's first US Latino/a Psychology course and minor in US Latino/a Studies.

Defining and Assessing Cultural Competency: Models, Methods & Minefields

Abstract:
The need for cultural competency among faculty and administrators in higher education, primarily in response to our increasingly diverse campuses, will only continue to grow. The expanding chasm between the traditional roots of the academy, and the culturally diverse perspectives of those who now populate its campuses, brings a dynamic tension to virtually every aspect of university work and experience. Dealing with cultural differences is an activity filled with complexities and fraught with anxieties. Cultural differences among people can seem simultaneously large and small, cultural identities and axes of cultural difference are multidimensional and interactive; the settings within which culturally different people must interact are numerous and span the academic hierarchy; and, opportunities for cultural missteps abound. There is little wonder, then, why many higher education personnel feel confused, overwhelmed, and even at times, personally frustrated as they navigate their new reality.

In this presentation, proceeding from the literatures in psychology and education, a working synthesis of some prevailing definitions of cultural competency will be provided, as well as specific domains within which this construct can be operationalized and measured. Key concepts surrounding the robust assessment of cultural competency will be discussed and concrete examples of instruments and methods that have been used to accomplish this task will be offered.

Last, throughout this presentation, the importance for all of us to recognize ourselves as cultural beings -- cultural beings who generate a real and impactful presence within an environment of human difference -- will be repeatedly emphasized. Only from this personal, focal reality can we recognize, understand and ultimately appreciate others as cultural beings, and increase our ability to interact with one another in a culturally competent fashion.

Presenting: Tuesday October 30th at the K-State Alumni Center

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Dr. Wm. Gregory Sawyer

Wm. Gregory Sawyer, Vice President for Student Affairs at California State University Channel Islands (CI), earned his Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration at the University of North Texas (UNT). Dr. Sawyer began his academic career as a Communication professor at Amarillo College in Amarillo, Texas shortly after completing his Masters degree in Organizational Communication Behavior. After two years of teaching and coaching Forensics and Debate at Amarillo College, Dr. Sawyer returned to school to work on his doctoral degree at the University of North Texas in Denton. Upon completion of his Ph.D., Dr. Sawyer was appointed Assistant Dean of Students. Within a period of four years Sawyer was promoted to Associate Dean and finally, Dean of Students at UNT, where he was also a member of the communication faculty. He served as Dean of Students and UNT faculty until he was appointed Founding Dean of Students and Chief Student Affairs Officer at Florida Gulf Coast University, in Fort Myers. As the Founding Dean, Sawyer was broadly involved in the strategic planning, development and operations of Florida's newest state university.

After six and one-half years in South Florida, Dr. Sawyer accepted the position as the Founding Vice President for Student Affairs at CI. Dr. Sawyer has brought a wealth of knowledge and experience to CI; after all, how many people have started two new universities? Since his arrival at CI, Dr. Sawyer has dedicated his efforts to hiring, developing and encouraging a diverse student-centered and student-focused Student Affairs division which fosters an inclusive and collegial learning environment.

In 2005 Dr. Sawyer was selected by the students at Channel Islands as the Maximus Award winner for the Outstanding Administrator of the Year. In 2007 he was recognized by the American College Personnel Association (ACPA) as the Senior Practitioner of the Year that recognizes outstanding chief student affairs officers (i.e. Deans and Vice Presidents). In May 2008, Dr. Sawyer was awarded by Chancellor Reed and the Trustees of the California State University system with the prestigious Wang Family Excellence Award, which recognizes annually four outstanding faculty and one outstanding administrator out of 46,000 faculty and staff in the CSU. Most recently (November 2011), Dr. Sawyer was recognized by the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA) with Scott Goodnight Award for Outstanding Performance as a Vice President for Student Affairs.

Dr. Sawyer is married to Dr. Rita Gloria Sawyer who is the Director of Admissions at the Charles Drew University of Science and Medicine.

"Think Differently": Creating a Culturally Competent Community

Abstract:

In this presentation we will examine how colleges and universities are "institutions that are defined cultures that share traditions, beliefs, customs, history and folklore." The implicit or explicit system of rules in which we chose to engage in these institutional cultures are the foundation for creating a culturally competent and communicative environment. Countless studies have suggested that our environments often take great stake in shaping our self-concept and behavior; colleges and universities are no exception. On our campuses, we as educators determine what our students learn, how they learn it, as well as the rules (formal and informal) for living with others (i.e. those who are like you and not like you). These rules are communicated from year-to-year, from one person to the next until we all agree or acquiesce to who we are, what "they are" and finally who should be communicating with whom. The rules are absorbed by our students be it through word-of-mouth or simply by cultural osmosis.

"Think differently" suggests that cultural competence, like diversity, is a source of both renewal and vitality. It may require recalibrating the institutional culture based on environmental values, beliefs, assumptions, traditions and customs. College and University cultures quite often mirror the predominant culture and therefore may not avail itself to the adherence of a culturally competent climate. This is the foundation for thinking differently. Building a culturally competent college and university environment requires intentionality, effective processes and procedures, core values and a desire and will to acknowledge, accept and transform.

Presenting: Tuesday October 30th at the K-State Alumni Center

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