Syracuse Abroad brings new perspectives to DEIA Symposium

“During a time when diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility (DEIA) efforts are under attack on college campuses across the country, the University‚Äôs depth and breadth of DEIA efforts were showcased at the inaugural event, The D.E.I.A. Symposium, on October 3rd.”

Syracuse Abroad participated in the poster presentation at the Symposium, detailing it’s DEIA student working group and project plans for the future.

DEIA working group and symposium poster
DEIA working group and symposium poster

The poster, titled ‘Belonging Abroad: Empowering Students through Syracuse Abroad’s DEIA Student Working Group,’ showcased the group’s work and dedication to inclusive practices both abroad and on campus.

The poster outlined the origin of the student working group, it’s purpose and plan of action. The goal of the student working group, comprised of student leadership, oversight from staff and engaged program alumni, is to “create an avenue for students to share their experiences with staff.” Through meetings and guided conversation, the group plans to lead the development of new initiatives that address identity-based concerns centered around a core framework.

The group plans to focus on three main areas of improvement: website redevelopment, content creation and growth. The group hopes to attract students of diverse backgrounds, experiences and identities to join the group and participate in the evolving conversation of DEIA related to studying abroad. The team also plans to add content to the Syracuse Abroad website to include cultural norms for each Syracuse Abroad Center location to help guide students as they prepare to study abroad.

Delaney Van Wey, Campus Outreach Manager and co-lead of the working group notes, “We seek to enhance overall student cultural engagement and understanding of cultural competence and humility.” She sees this group as “uniquely positioned to support the Academic Strategic Plan objectives and the potential difficulties that may arise from an increased number of students studying abroad as it pertains to DEIA-related issues.”

episode on spotify

The DEIA Student Working Group also contributed a supporting podcast to further reflect on DEIA in the abroad space. Identity Abroad with Syracuse Abroad features the DEIA Working Group as they share their stories of self-discovery and advice for making the most out of a study abroad experience.

In the first episode ‘Belonging in Spain’, three students discuss their unique journeys studying in Spain. The episode discusses how to navigate culture shock, difficult situations, loneliness and other challenges students might face while abroad.

Read more about the DEIA Symposium