SLIS Students Shine at Discerning Diverse Voices Symposium – March 3, 2021
This week was the annual Discerning Diverse Voices Symposium (DDVS) on Diversity hosted by the University of Alabama College of Communication & Information Sciences. Created to harbor and promote diversity and inclusion, it is meant to serve as a forum for the sharing of ideas from researchers, faculty, staff, alumni, student, and diversity thought leaders from around the country. Now in its 12th year, the DDVS featured several students, alumni, and faculty members from UA SLIS. Dr. Miriam Sweeney served on the DDVS organizing committee this year. Both Dr. Sweeney and Dr. Bharat Mehra served as moderators for sessions throughout the conference.
One group of students were featured on a panel at DDVS. Current SLIS students Alyx Kim-Yohn, Dolores Peralta, Greg Peverill-Conti, and Lauren Tubbs-Ezell were panelists in a discussion titled “Libraries Today and Tomorrow: Graduate Student Perspective Conversations with MLIS Graduate Students on Issues of EDI [Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion].” They discussed essential EDI issues in the field of librarianship that the next generation of library professionals must actively address to meet the needs of the diverse communities they will serve as professionals.
Many other SLIS students had solo presentations. Emily Reynolds presented in two sessions, a paper presentation titled “Perspective Shift: Women’s Photographic Records as Archival Objects” and a Research-In-Brief session, with her section titled “Records of Society, Records of Self: Queer Women’s Photography in the Archive.” Several other papers were presented by students during the DDVS, including Meaghan Cash (“Archival Diaspora and its Effects on Indigenous Peoples of the Pacific Northwest”), Erin Brooks (“Symbolic Annihilation of Minorities in Library and Information Sciences”), and Kaitlyn Lynch (“Public Libraries as Safe Spaces: Digital Activism of Alabama Public Libraries During the Black Lives Matter Protests of 2020”). Recent graduate Juliana Mestre (MLIS, 2020) also presented a paper at DDVS, titled “A September Attack: LIS and the Fight Over Critical Race Theory.”
We applaud these students, alumni, and faculty members for their demonstrated commitment to issues and conversations centered on diversity, equity, and inclusion!