Diversity & Inclusion Initiatives

  • Members of the Psychology and Philosophy Department faculty (Dr. Lin – far left, Dr. Elcoro – far right) join together with other FSU faculty to say that Black Lives Matter!

  • Participants in a 2019 alumni panel hosted by the Psychology and Philosophy Department’s Diversity Committee. From left to right: Dr. Jen Lin, Tanya Lopez (‘18), Dr. Mirari Elcoro, Thalia Jimenez (‘18), Simone Matthews (‘18), and Jillian Lake (‘18).

  • Alumni panel discussion of how to make FSU more inclusive and supportive of diversity.

The Department of Psychology and Philosophy is committed to creating a safe and enriching learning environment for students from underrepresented groups, including students of color and/or students who identify as LGBTQ+.

On this page, we provide information on the Department’s initiatives to promote diversity and inclusion. 

Coursework

Faculty members in the Department of Psychology and Philosophy are committed to including topics related to diversity and inclusion, social justice, and equity in our courses. Students may be expected to complete reading or writing assignments on these topics and to participate actively in in-class activities and discussions.

For example:

  • In Dr. Greenstein’s Cognitive Psychology course, students complete a “Cognition in the Courtroom” module that examines how biases (ex: race bias, age bias, confirmation bias, shooter bias) can all unduly influence legal outcomes.
  • In Dr. Prehar’s Industrial-Organizational Psychology course, students learn about non-discrimination in the workplace and complete a “Work Around the World” project, in which they must examine cross-cultural differences in work environments and expectations.
  • In Dr. Campbell-Obaid’s History and Systems course, students choose a historical figure from an underrepresented group, discuss their life and work, and explain how their research and theories can be used to better understand a current social issue.
  • In Dr. Flanagan’s Seminar on Adolescent Coming of Age, students read The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian and Warriors Don’t Cry and analyze the racial identities of the main characters.
  • In Dr. Steinhofer’s Introduction to Political and Social Philosophy course, students complete an assignment and engage in a class discussion on the characteristics of a racist joke.

Students looking for more in-depth coursework in this area may want to consider enrolling in some of our Sociocultural Domain courses (PSYC 224: Social Psychology, PSYC 259: Cultural Psychology, PSYC 286: Psychology of Women). The Department also offers PSYC 354: Psychology of Prejudice, which seeks to provide an overview of prejudice from a social psychology perspective. Students examine how and why prejudices form, why biases continue to exist, the consequences of prejudice, and methods for reducing discrimination.

Diversity Committee

Our Department’s Diversity Committee has the mission to empower, educate, celebrate, and mentor students from underrepresented groups.

Specifically, the Diversity Committee seeks to: (1) engage students to learn more about career paths with diversity, inclusion, and equity at the forefront; (2) maintain an inclusive learning community to support students of all identities and backgrounds in collaboratively promoting social justice; (3) gather student feedback on University climate; (4) give students a voice to express concerns related to equality/equity; (5) create and advocate for initiatives, policies, and curriculum to better serve our diverse community; and (6) promote more inclusive teaching practices by creating a repository of teaching materials for Department faculty. Students interested in learning more about the Diversity Committee should contact the Committee’s faculty chairs, Drs. Mirari Elcoro (melcoro@framingham.edu) and Jen Lin (plin2@framingham.edu).

In conjunction with the Division of Diversity, Inclusion, & Community Engagement (DICE), faculty members of the Department of Psychology and Philosophy have also participated in Widening the Circle and been recipients of FSU’s Beacon Award.

Widening the Circle

The Widening the Circle (WTC) Faculty Institute assists with advancing Inclusive Excellence at Framingham State University through the focus area of Diversity in the Curriculum. Institute workshops explore incorporating themes of diversity and inclusion into all areas of teaching and assessment including curriculum design, pedagogical techniques, facilitating class discussions, assignment design, and assessment methods. Members of the Psychology and Philosophy Department have been particularly active in the Institute. Dr. Deborah McMakin and Dr. Nicole Rossi have served as Coordinators for WTC. Additionally, Dr. Michael Greenstein and Dr. Maggie Campbell-Obaid have participated in the year-long WTC Institute.

The Beacon Award

The Beacon Award is given to members of the Framingham State University community who go above and beyond their responsibilities to make noteworthy contributions that help advance inclusive excellence at FSU. These individuals have demonstrated recognizable efforts related to diversity, inclusion, equity and/or social justice to help enrich experiences for our faculty, staff and students. Past recipients of the Beacon Award include Dr. Jen Lin and Dr. Mirari Elcoro.

Recent Faculty and Student Scholarship

Putra, I. E., Campbell-Obaid, M., & Suwartono, C. (2020). Beliefs about human nature as good versus evil influence intergroup attitudes and values. Peace and Conflict: Journal of Peace Psychology.

Rossi, N. E. (2018). A commentary on same-sex and different-sex parent households & child health outcomes. The Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, 39(2), 180.

McMakin, D., Rossi, N. E., & Shearman, R. (2018, November). Widening the circle: Creating and sustaining a faculty institute for inclusive excellence. Presentation conducted at the National Association for Multicultural Education (NAME) 28th Annual International Conference. Memphis, TN.

Rossi, N. E. (2018, August). Incorporating diversity and inclusion in a history of psychology course. Symposium conducted at the American Psychological Association Annual Meeting. San Francisco, CA.

Jillian Lake (‘18) presents her research on the associations between gender, feminist affiliation, and hiring practices at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference in Amherst, MA.

Jillian Lake (‘18) presents her research on the associations between gender, feminist affiliation, and hiring practices at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference in Amherst, MA.

Dr. Deborah McMakin gives a presentation on the National Association for Multicultural Education to other FSU faculty members.

Dr. Deborah McMakin gives a presentation on the National Association for Multicultural Education to other FSU faculty members.

Recent Student-Led Scholarship

Hippolyte, K. K., Dwyer, E., Fonrose, T., Thebauld, A. S., & Lin, P. J. (2020). Prejudice against transgender individuals in healthcare facilities. Poster presented at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference, Amherst, MA.

Costello, K., Phanord, M., Waitt, K., & Lin, P. J. (2019). Negative bias toward bisexuality. Poster presented at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference, Amherst, MA.

Germain, M., Hara, M., & Lin, P. (2019). Contemporary issues surrounding education for Native Americans: Native American students’ experiences through the Massachusetts education system. Poster presented at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference, Amherst, MA.

Holmes, R, Hem, M., Magno, D., & Lin, P. J. (2019). Ageism in technology and employment. Poster presented at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference, Amherst, MA.

Rankin, G., Lombardi, L., & Lin, P. J. (2019). Perceptions and prejudices of body modifications. Poster presented at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference, Amherst, MA.

Salley, N., Salhaney, K., Gusmini, G., & Lin, P. J. (2019). Gender bias in conflict resolution abilities within a clinical context. Poster presented at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference, Amherst, MA.

Walters, K., Bautista, J., Rawson, S., & Lin, P. J. (2019). The exploration of racial bias in education. Poster presented at the Massachusetts Statewide Undergraduate Research Conference, Amherst, MA.