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King Talks

January 22, 2019, 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm EST

King Talks. Four students, one theme: Unravel

Rackham Graduate students will communicate the relevance of their work to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy in a TED-talk style. Presentation is from 6:00 to 7:00 p.m. with a reception to follow from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m in the Assembly Hall.

Pre-registration is required at


Shannon Moran

  • Hometown: Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Degree Program: Ph.D. Student, Chemical Engineering

Be the Mentor You Wish You’d Had: An Evidence-Based Appeal

Mentorship isn’t something we start only when we’ve reached the high point of our careers—it’s something we can start now as young professionals. Mentorship is one effective and rewarding way of supporting the pipeline of folks from underrepresented groups in our fields. In this talk, I’ll discuss the evidence for prioritizing mentorship in promoting diversity and my own experience with mentorship as a gay woman in STEM.

Aunrika Tucker-Shabazz

  • Hometown: DeKalb, Illinois
  • Degree Program: Ph.D. Student, Sociology

Fighting the Hidden Fees: Unraveling Disciplinary Disparities in Public School Punishment of Young Black Girls

Black girls continue in 2018 to be understudied and overlooked by research investigating the impact of criminalizing children through stigmatizing school discipline strategies, despite being the fastest growing demographic affected by the strictest disciplinary procedures such as expulsion, indefinite suspension, arrests, and referrals to the juvenile system (Girlhood Interrupted: The Erasure of Black Girls’ Childhood [2017]). But Black girls need more attention as subjects outside of the academy and inside our communities. When disciplining young Black girls for minor misbehaviors, school officials often unevenly distribute the “benefits and disadvantages of doubt” in racially gendered ways that expose Black girls to the criminal justice system as early as pre-school. By exploring the trend of pre-school arrests of Black girls since 2005, this talk aims at unraveling the hidden tolls Black girls are forced to pay along the school-to-prison pipeline.

Kavitha Lobo

  • Hometown: San Diego, California
  • Degree Program: Master’s Student, Social Work

Care Not Cure: The Benefits of Deinstitutionalizing Mental Health Care

As part of a global social work project I designed, I was recently immersed in the tiny town of Geel, Belgium, which has a 750-year history of deinstitutionalized mental health care. This is practiced in Geel through placing boarders, the term used for those with mental illness, with foster families who welcome and accept boarders as they are. In comparing how the Geelian culture has produced and sustained the family foster care system to the cultural attitudes towards mental health care in America, I will unravel conceptions around alternative modalities of mental health care. In looking at the humanizing, community-based approach to psychiatric care in Geel I will show how benefits are emphasized in those otherwise seen as burdened and burdens due to their psychological difference.

Steven M. Smith

  • Hometown: Detroit and St. Clair, Michigan
  • Degree Program: Master’s Student, Public Administration and Sport Management

Our Most Valuable Things: Connecting with Each Other, and the Time We Have

We in society today need to unravel from the frivolous things that take up our time and connect to the work that we want to do and need to do—the work that is necessary to better our lives and the lives of those who are around us. I want to address why we need to do this: to advance ourselves, but just as importantly connect to our communities and the people we are surrounded by. It’s no secret that while we are connected through technology like never before, there is a sense of isolation that many people feel, and I believe it has to do with our values and the communities that we have drifted away from.


January 22, 2019
6:00 pm to 8:00 pm EST
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Event Type
Lecture / Discussion
Rackham Graduate School (Horace H.)