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The Office of the Associate Vice-Chancellor for Multicultural Affairs offers cultural diversity training to students, faculty, professionals and staff. The purpose of these trainings is to build awareness on how cultural differences profoundly impact people in organizations; motivate participants to rethink their behavior and attitudes toward others; allow participants to examine their own biases and focus on how they perceive differences; examine how stereotypes are developed, barriers created, and misunderstandings magnified; and to identify diversity issues internally which must be addressed. Medical and dental students are required to participate in a mandatory cultural diversity simulation activity during orientation which is usually held at the beginning of the academic year. Similar activities are offered throughout the year such as "Diversity Dialogues" and "Healthcare that Connects," both lecture series focusing on cultural issues in healthcare delivery.
Jo Anne Fordham, Assessment and Research Coordinator in the office of Academic Affairs, shared her thoughts about the 2014 Common Reading Project:
"Thank you for this year's Common Read and the discussion that followed it possible. One of the results of gatherings over books is new relationships with colleagues: I exchanged contact information after today's discussion with two people with whom I've never previously exchanged so much as a nod. Another is learning about opportunities for service and learning: at a later meeting today, the Palliative Care nurse who spoke about her experiences expressed an interest in joining the emergency preparedness group.
These kinds of outcomes are not captured in surveys, but they are important and I wanted to thank you for them."
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Jackson, MS 39216
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