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Center for Teaching Excellence

  • Diverse College Students

Cultural Competence and Communications


The purpose of this presentation is to increase your multicultural competency, intercultural skills and knowledge on the University, State and Federal laws and policies that protect the rights of all employees with regard to age, ability, race, color, gender, sexual orientation, veteran status or genetics. The most successful leaders desire to create and sustain a truly inclusive workplace in which every member of the team contributes to the best of his or her ability. A lack of knowledge or understanding, or biases whether conscious or unconscious, however, may interfere with even the best-intentioned leadership. This presentation examines how identity, stereotypes, bias and issues surrounding communication can affect our community while providing you with the skills for relationship building, advocating and creating an inclusive working environment.

At the end of this presentation, participants will:

  • Identify one's cultural assumptions and biases that may impact building working relationships
  • Define bias, stereotypes and microaggressions
  • Clarify the difference between unconscious bias and illegal bias
  • Actively accept and provide feedback as needed on microaggressions
  • Recognize the impact of communication on self and others
  • Develop strategies for creating an inclusive environment and reducing both conscious and implicit bias
  • Identify strategies for confronting bias (interruption, questioning, education and echoing strategies)
  • Provide scenarios of observation, conflict management, dialogue and active listening as a means of understanding and engaging with others
  • Understand specific information about USC policies and best practices related to all forms of discrimination and tools for addressing these issues
  • Have techniques to immediately apply the material learned in the workplace

About the Facilitator

Shay Malone is the director of the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs. As director, she provides leadership for planning, implementing and assessing outreach and awareness programs that promote multicultural and social justice education for the campus community. She works with multiple committees and programs across the university to promote diversity and inclusion, including working with USC's first chief diversity officer on the university's Diversity Committee.

Shay came to USC in September 2013 from Vanderbilt University, where she served as the assistant director of leadership development and intercultural affairs. In this position, she was involved in creating Vanderbilt's LGBTQ Center and implemented programs that integrate leadership and service learning with social justice education. Previously, Shay held several positions in admissions, multicultural and international student services at Webster University.

This workshop is co-sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs and the Center for Teaching Excellence.


Cultural Competence and Communications

Challenge the conventional. Create the exceptional. No Limits.