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Social Justice Week

A page within Diversity & Inclusion

Social Justice Week 2024 Building Belong: Identities Shaping Communities
April 2-4, 2024

"There is no power for change greater than a community discovering what it cares about." – Margaret J. Wheatley 

Social Justice Week's goal is to help inspire conversation with research to reinvigorate our lives with realistic and achievable goals to make a change in our communities. This year we want to highlight how identities and intersections of identities impact our communities. The University of Wisconsin La Crosse and the people of the La Crosse area hold many identities within it that shape our experiences in the community. We each navigate space differently and desire a community where everyone feels a sense of belonging. 

‘Building belonging’ |  UWL’s Social Justice Week set for April 2-4 | UW-La Crosse will celebrate its eighth-annual Social Justice Week April 2-4 with the theme “Building belonging: Identities shaping communities.”  
The celebration, organized by UWL Diversity & Inclusion in partnership with the Social Justice Institute, features a series of public events where faculty, staff and students can share their research and stories, and start conversations about what social justice means to them. It will explore how identities and the intersection of identities shape people’s experiences as part of a community.  

This year’s keynote speakers are: 

  • Dina Zavala, formerly of UWL and currently vice president for Inclusion, Equity and Community at Carleton College 
  • Jonathan Locust, formerly associate vice president of Equity & Inclusive Excellence at Winona State University and currently founder/CEO of Locust Group consulting firm 
  • And Nicole Collins, research associate for the Pluralism Project at Harvard University. 

Faculty are encouraged to bring their classes to one of their sessions.
The event is free and open to the community, although guests are asked to register. 

UWL’s Social Justice Week is sponsored by Wisconsin Public Radio, DREAM, the College of Arts, Social Sciences & Humanities, the College of Business Administration, the School of Education, the School of Visual & Performing Arts, the Office of Multicultural Student Services, and the UWL Parent Fund.

To review presentations in more detail review our digital program click here! 

To Register for the event click here!

The Division of Diversity & Inclusion and the Institute for Social Justice


Schedule of events


Tuesday, April 2

Wednesday, April 3

Thursday, April 4

10 - 11:30 A.M.


Animals, Objects and Nonhuman Characters: Results of a Diversity Analysis of the Picture Books in Murphy Library | 3120


Belonging Together: How Read-Alouds Shape Identities in Classroom Communities | 3310



Student Retention and Sense of Belonging with Study Strategy Support in an Upper
Division Anatomy and
Physiology Course | 3120


The Importance of Queer Spaces | 3310


“I kind of have to prove myself”: Sense of Belonging for Latina Students Who Do Not Speak Spanish | 3314

Fostering Connection:
A Mental Health Group
Therapy Perspective | 3120


Eagles Don't Stand By: Bystander Intervention Training | 3130


Queer Love in Higher Education | 3314



Noon - 1:30 P.M.

Lunch and Learn

Quantum Strategies for Building Community and Belonging: Empowering Collective Consciousness | 3310


Epidemic of Homelessness and Food Insecurity | 3120

Establishing Spaces for Belonging: How Institutions Can Transform Spaces for Student Success | 3310


Building Belonging for
marginalized identities
at a PWI | 3120


Breaking Barriers: Women in STEM | 3314


LGBTQ+ and Religion: Finding a Way Forward in Difficult Times | 3314

2 - 3:30 P.M.


Applied Drama for Social
Justice & Community
Dialogue | 3120


Fact or Fiction: Implications of Recent State-Level DEI Decisions | 3310


Building Belonging through Education: Teacher Identities | 3314

Bias Support and Education at UWL | 3120


Fatphobia as a Form of Discrimination in La Crosse | 3310


Building Community through Scholarship and Activism | 3314

Civil Discourse at UWL | 3120


Building Community Through Labor-Based Grading | 3130


Empower Hour | 3314


4 - 5:30 P.M.

Wonder Pedagogy and the
Influence on Academic
Socialization for Diverse
Students | 3120


What Makes for Successful Community Engagement:
The Implementation of Environmental Justice Initiatives Throughout Wisconsin Governmental Agencies | 3310


The Midwestern Trans script: Growing up as a Transgender individual in rural Wisconsin | 3314

Psych Hour: Building a
Community Space in
Our Department | 3120


Hear, Here North as a Social Justice Project | 3310


Building Belonging in the World Language Classroom: Teaching with Equity in Mind | 3314

Gender Euphoria! Building
Resilience in LGBTQ+
Populations | 3120


Sense of Belongingness: from the Perspectives of Student of Color on Campus | 3130


Burning our Illusions: Travel and Ethnography as a Path Towards Social Transformation | 3314