Since Oct. 25, when President Julie Sullivan published an Action Plan to Combat Racism at St. Thomas, many have wondered: Will this be the turning point we seek? What role can I take in moving our campus forward?

OneStThomas has regular updates and a comprehensive view of the action plan progress — accessible to all faculty, staff and students. The Newsroom is also committed to publishing regular stories on the action plan — in an effort to keep this work at the forefront of our attention.

Looking ahead to January and February, mark your calendars and encourage fellow students and colleagues to learn about the following:

The Excel! Research Scholars Program will receive additional funding in 2019.

For more than 10 years, the Excel! Scholars program has helped historically underrepresented students prepare for and gain acceptance to graduate school. Designed to prepare undergraduate students for the rigors of graduate studies and to be competitive for graduate school funding, the program involves students in research, mentorship and several other scholarly activities. The deadline to apply for the 2019 cohort is Jan. 18.

The College of Arts and Sciences hosted its first Teach-in Tuesday event, with many more now scheduled.

Hundreds of students, faculty and staff filled the O’Shaughnessy Educational Center auditorium on Dec. 4 for the first College of Arts and Sciences Teach-in Tuesday event. Mark your calendars for the next 11 teach-ins (Feb. 12, March 12, April 9, May 14, June 11, July 9, Aug. 13, Sept. 10, Oct. 8, Nov. 12 and Dec. 10). A committee is working to identify topics and speakers, all of which will focus on racial inequality.

Student Diversity and Inclusion Services’ J-Term Book Club will be “The Hate You Give.”

Open to all students, faculty and staff, the Student Diversity and Inclusion Services upcoming J-Term 2019 session is Angie Thomas’s The Hate U Give, winner of the Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, a Coretta Scott King Honor book, and on the National Book Award longlist. The J-Term Book club has been in place since 2007, with past works most recently including “TRACE: Memory, History, Race, and the American Landscape,” by Lauret Savory, “The Distance Between Us,” by Reyna Grande and “The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace,” by Jeff Hobbs.

St. Thomas students who register for the book club in Anderson Student Center 224 will receive a free copy of the book.

“J-Term Book Club’s purpose is to showcase stories of different perspectives that align with our mission, in which we give spaces to hear stories from historically marginalized identities,” said Dia Yang, Student Diversity and Inclusion Services program director. “We hope to bring the campus community together during J-Term to have a space to engage in meaningful conversations on key points of perspectives within the book in a relaxing environment.”

The club will meet four Thursdays in January from noon-1 p.m., (Jan. 3, 10, 17, 24). On Jan. 10, the author, Angie Thomas, will be joining via Zoom.

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