Biochemistry is the science of life—all of our life processes are chemical reactions. So, too is the alchemical process of transformation—educational, curricular, social, and personal. What we know to be true is diversity is a fact of life that fosters creativity, innovation, change, and evolution. Inclusion, equity, justice are choices we make in life regarding how we will live out our shared humanity and ecological kinship. The elements combined shape our worldview, have the ability to enhance our engagement in the world and deepen our understanding of what it means to be a living, breathing, evolving organism on the planet in relationship with all the other living, breathing, and evolving organisms. Like any good chemical equation, the introduction of a catalyst has the potential to transform substances and create new compounds. In our society, the introduction of JEDI principles into our societal equation might assist us in catalyzing the transformation many of us seek toward a more just, humane, equitable, and inclusive society. The introduction of the JEDI catalyst is most important within the halls of our educational institutions. More pointedly, for educators—and STEM educators, in particular—there is a mandate to not only understand the importance of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice in the creation of welcoming educational spaces but there is a responsibility to transform and to disrupt traditional curricula and cannons with inclusion of more diverse perspectives. This keynote will educate attendees on the importance of introducing the JEDI catalyst for transformation to yield new, innovative, and more inclusive (STEM) futures.
In the keynote, attendees learned of the JEDI mandate for educators and STEM educators, more specifically. One cannot act on what one does not understand. This interactive workshop will deepen attendees understanding of diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice through dialogical engagement and assist them in developing a common language and comprehension of the concepts. Following a review of definitions and concepts, attendees will be asked to utilize examples from their own classrooms, offices, and institutions to apply their new knowledge, analyze their respective examples, and then introduce the JEDI catalyst to ideate the production of new, transformative outcomes. Collectively, attendees will evaluate each scenario and depart with viable models of how the concepts can be put into service to enrich attendees’ respective educational settings.