Diversity, Inclusivity, Belonging, and Equity (DIBE) in the Biology Department:
Language developed through student, staff and faculty collaboration
The Biology Department at Southwestern University believes that learning takes place in an inclusive environment where students, staff, and faculty from diverse backgrounds are seen and heard.
We acknowledge that history is rich with injustices committed by members of the STEM community, including biologists, and these offenses continue to negatively impact recruitment and retention of underrepresented groups.
Members of the biology department understand that change cannot happen without having difficult conversations. We believe that we need to carefully examine uncomfortable truths from the past and present so that we may learn from these events and begin to forge a new path where students of any color, religion, identity, or ability can succeed in biology.
We strive to provide a safe and supportive environment for underrepresented individuals, including, but not limited to, students of color, sexual and gender minorities, low-income students, first-generation students, differently abled students, and those with chronic health conditions.
We are working towards a more inclusive and equitable environment. What we are already doing:
- Lavender Spaces training for all faculty
- Seminars and book clubs about inclusivity and diversity
- Physical spaces
- Gender neutral bathrooms in the science building
- Private breast-feeding room for mothers
- Wheelchair accessible laboratory
Environmental Science students learning how to take measurements of dbh - tree diameters - to estimate age and growth. (Photo credit: Dr. Jennie DeMarco)
Jamal Collins works on separating out soil layers in Environmental Science laboratory (Photo credit: Dr. Jennie DeMarco)
Students in Environmental Science (Photo credit: Dr. Jennie DeMarco)
King Creativity Group “Lecture in a Box” with (left to right) Dean Dulthummon, Karen Rativa, Dr. Stacie Brown, Sebastian Somolinos, Alexis Dimanche (Photo credit: Dr. Stacie Brown)
Environmental Studies major Gabby Garza examining a soil layer during Environmental Science class. (Photo credit: Dr. Jennie DeMarco)
Snail lab checking out the view of a wetland in Utah while attending a national scientific meeting. (Photo credit: Dr. Romi Burks)
Areli Gutierrez in the field doing her Capstone research on Georgetown Salamander. (Photo credit: Ben Pierce)
How do geckos climb walls? SU Callie Haworth & Jaxon Banks (Photo credit: Romi Burks)
SCOPE 21 students Lillian Dolapchiev and Cynthia Bashara present their research on environmental DNA at the Fall Open House. (Photo credit: Dr. Romi Burks)
How can solar power be turned into energy? SU Joyous Ahn & Audrey Damarest
SCOPE 21 students Cynthia Bashara and Lillian Dolapchiev sample for apple snail eDNA at a golf course pond in San Antonio (Photo credit: Dr. Romi Burks)
End of semester lab meeting for the Apple Snail Molecular Ecology Lab with Dr. Burks: (left to right): Cassidy Reynolds, Cynthia Bashara, Lillian Dolapchiev, Abby White, Kate Henderson and Esmerelda Barrientos (Photo credit: Dr. Romi Burks)
Poster - Katherine Montgomery ’23: The Blackland Prairies in 2050: Never lost, just too often forgotten (Photo credit: Romi Burks)
Five women scientists had the opportunity to extend their coursework and research experience outside the classroom with poster presentations at the Texas Conservation Symposium, co-sponsored by Southwestern and The Williamson County Conservation Foundation. The students all had the opportunity to interact with the keynote speaker, Dr. Kelly Rameriz, Assistant Professor at the University of Texas El Paso and co-founder of 500 Women Scientists. Katherine Montgomery, Lauren Wheat, Cynthia Bashara, Dr. Romi Burks, Lillian Dolapchiev, Nicole Ratjak and Dr. Kelly Rameriz (Photo credit: Romi Burks)
Talking Science (Photo credit: Romi Burks)