One Team. One Dream.
To change the game, it takes a team.
Elgin Community College is a welcoming campus where more than 1,250 employees and 8,400 students embody a diverse, inclusive community connected through a common goal to improve people’s lives through learning and career development.
Elgin Community College has been dedicated to supporting and consistently improving an environment where each student can find success in their educational and career pursuits by fostering a culture of equity, diversity, and inclusion. This past year, Anthony Ramos was hired as the inaugural executive director of equity, diversity, and inclusion to further sharpen the collective efforts already underway at ECC.
Providing an equal opportunity for education is the primary purpose and passion that drive the work of Pietrina Probst, director of ADA, student access and disability services at Elgin Community College. Pietrina and her department exist to increase equity, diversity, and inclusion for students with disabilities in the classroom and around campus.
Kim Tarver, MPT, professor of physical therapist assistant at Elgin Community College, looks to use every avenue available to pursue equity, diversity, and inclusion. From integrating diverse case studies into her curriculum to leading the faculty union to more equitable practices, Tarver believes anyone can have an impact no matter where they sit at the table.
Vincent Gaddis, PhD, began teaching at Elgin Community College this past August, but he is no stranger to the campus and the work being done to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion within the classroom and community. In fact, he has been a driving force behind it.
For Professor of English Lori Clark, much of her EDI work takes place behind the scenes, but the outcomes can be seen everywhere on campus. “It’s critical that students, especially students of color and LGBTQ+ students, see themselves reflected both in the campus community and in the course curriculum.” Clark has led the way on many EDI initiatives related to gender identity and support for the LGBTQ+ community.
Alison Douglas and Colleen Stribling have been working together since 2013 to build a bridge between their two departments. Their goal is to increase student success and create a system enhanced through equity, diversity, and inclusion, or EDI. This led to the creation of a Learning Community that allows students enrolled in the Advanced ESL Transitions course to simultaneously enroll in English 101 while also allowing them to forego the placement test required by the English department.
For Ryan Kerr, MA, associate professor of English, the need for equity, diversity, and inclusion, or EDI, is obvious. “We know there are success or equity gaps in education for certain groups,” said Kerr. “Because these things have been happening since early childhood for some, it just compounds, and since we have inequity walk in our doors at Elgin Community College, we have to do something to help with it.”
When you ask Assistant Professor of Sociology Mia Hardy, Ph.D., what she’s working on in the realm of equity, diversity, and inclusion at Elgin Community College, her excitement to share is palpable, even in on a Zoom call. Hardy has been with the college since 2016, starting as an associate dean of college transitions and developmental education. She then served as the associate dean of communications and behavioral sciences before transitioning to a full-time faculty position in 2020.
When Susan Timm, Ed.D., professor of business at Elgin Community College, was honored with the YWCA Elgin's 2021 Harriet Gifford & Hattie Griffin Award for Education in recognition for her unwavering efforts related to diversity, inclusion, equity, and social justice, it came as no surprise to her colleagues at ECC. If there is an equity, diversity, or inclusion effort underway at ECC, Timm likely had a hand in it.
Yolonda Barnes will always put her colleagues' work, intelligence, and passion ahead of her own achievements. When it comes to the movement for change surrounding equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) on campus, her humble nature remains, but her actions resonate in their impact.
To Professor of Business Clark Hallpike, MBA, equity, diversity, and inclusion work is a lot like coaching – you put in the work and expect results. "Thinking back throughout my years at ECC, I've always had a commitment to diversity," recalls Hallpike. "In my 45 years here, the whole concept has evolved quite a bit on campus, but it's been my passion to bring cultural awareness and change concerning equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in the classroom and the community."
Tyler Roeger, Ph.D., director of the Center for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning (CETL), may be one step removed from working directly with ECC students, but through his role in supporting faculty, creating an environment that leads with equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) is at the forefront of his work. Roeger is co-chair of ECC’s institutional committee TIDE and an administrative coach for another key institutional committee, SSI.
Manny Salgado, Ph.D., associate professor of psychology, has heard others say the complex work of equity practice is ‘something that is done badly or not done at all.' Practicing equity work is something Salgado has been involved in most of his life and throughout his 17 years at ECC. He is one of the core members of TIDE, a faculty group that embraces and welcomes mistakes made to learn from them and become better educators.
Liddy Hope has been asking herself and her school, “are we ready for them?” Meaning, is ECC ready to embrace and assist the diverse stream of learners that enter each semester seeking an education and their future career paths? Hope has made it a part of her mission to continue learning how to best do this and work with other ECC faculty and staff on sharpening efforts that are already creating positive change concerning equity, diversity, and inclusion throughout our school.