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Diversity & Inclusion

Diversity Resources for Faculty, Staff, and Graduate Students


We view Diversity and Inclusion as central to our mission as a Department of Psychology. Because Psychology is a science of human behavior, it is critical for our faculty and graduate students to understand and embrace diversity of human experiences.  As a departmental community, we are committed to providing a welcoming and inclusive environment consistent with Virginia Tech's Principles of Community. Our department diversity committee coordinates curricular, continuing education, and community-building activities within the department and we encourage participation in university events and programming through InclusiveVT. To foster skill development, experiential learning, and community action to promote diversity and inclusion, we offer a departmental Diversity and Inclusion Discussion Series. Through participation in the discussion series and additional training activities, graduate students, staff, and faculty may earn a departmental Diversity CertificatePlease contact Danny Axsom, chair of the Department Diversity Committee, for further information. 

Department Diversity Committee

  • Danny Axsom, chair (faculty member, Clinical Science area)
  • Pearl Chiu (faculty member, Biological Psychology and Clinical Science areas)
  • Julie Dunsmore (faculty member, Clinical Science and Developmental Science areas)
  • Russell Jones (faculty member, Clinical Science area)
  • Neil Hauenstein (faculty member, Industrial/Organizational area)
  • Meg O'Neill (graduate student, Biological Psychology area)
  • Vicki Thompson (staff member, Program Support Technician)
  • Andrew Valdespino (graduate student, Clinical Science area)
  • Gabriela Blanquiz (undergraduate student)
  • Courtney Ortiz (undergraduate student)
  • Celina Grisolia (undergraduate student


Department Diversity & Inclusion Series

Dr. Ellington Graves discusses Black Lives Matter during our most recent Diversity event.

Spring 2015

  • February 19th:  Inclusive Pedagogy, led by Michelle Deramo
  • March 27th:  Silence Hurts:  Responding in the Moment, led by Alicia Cohen
  • April 15th:  Participant Recruitment:  Best Practices for Recruiting Diverse Samples, led by  Alicia Cohen

Fall 2015 

  • August 17th:  Principles of Community (part of Orientation), led by Julie Dunsmore *CORE*
  • October 2nd:  Introduction to Appalachia for Psychologists, led by Emily Satterwhite
  • October 13th:  Discussing Uncomfortable Topics in the Classroom, led by Russell Jones and Chris Kaestle
  • November 10th:  Recognizing Privilege, led by Neil Hauenstein *CORE*
  • December 10th:  Principles of Community in the Department, led by Michelle Deramo *CORE*

Spring 2016

  • February 9th:  From Compliance to Inclusivity in the College Classroom, led by Robyn Hudson
  • April 1st:  Teaching, Research, and Service in Appalachia, led by Emily Satterwhite, Theresa Burriss, and Jim Werth
  • April 22nd:  Revisiting the Kernel of Truth Hypothesis, led by Neil Hauenstein
  • April 29th:  Stereotype Threat, led by Danny Axsom *CORE*

Fall 2016 

  • August 12th:  Principles of Community (part of Orientation), led by Julie Dunsmore *CORE*
  • August 25th:  Say My Name:  Practical Strategies for Learning Student Names to Increase Inclusivity in the Classroom, led by Kurt Hoffman and Meg O’Neill
  • September 21st:  Safe Spaces and Brave Spaces:  Voice in the Classroom, Lab, and Professional Meetings, led by Julie Dunsmore
  • October 6th:  Stereotype Threat & Implicit Bias, led by Danny Axsom *CORE*
  • November 3rd:  Black Lives Matter Part 1, led by Ellington Graves

Spring 2017

  • January 27th:  Micro-aggressions and Privilege, led by Neil Hauenstein *CORE*
  • March 14th:  Mentoring to Support Diversity & Inclusion, led by Julie Dunsmore, Amanda Halliburton, and Meg O'Neill
  • April 14th:  Black Lives Matter Part 2, led by Ellington Graves