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Smarty Pants Comes Home For the Holidays
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Smarty Pants Comes Home For the Holidays

When: Monday, December 14
From 2:00-3:30 PM EST
Where: Virtual Classroom

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Smarty pants comes home for the holidays

Facilitator: Stacey Patton, PhD

Does the phrase “home for the holidays” fill you with feelings of anticipation and excitement, or dread for inevitable family drama? The holidays can be a time of joy, but also a time of stress, especially if you are a first-generation graduate student whose family culture might not be comfortable with your ambitions and intellectual pursuits. If you're a scholar of color you may already be familiar with racial microaggressions from faculty and students. But sometimes you may face even more devastating passive aggressive slights and jabs from family and close friends when you go home.


Rather than home being a haven that’s free from tension, the disconnect from family members, misunderstandings and awkwardness can leave you feeling torn between cultures and identities, amid relatives who may be envious or angry that their loved one has gone off and come back changed. Many graduate students coping with these kinds of family dynamics find themselves frustrated because they feel devalued and disrespected.


In this webinar journalist and historian Dr. Stacey Patton uses her unique brand of candor and humor to share some lessons she has learned about being a first-generation graduate student, and she offers a practical guide that students can use to manage their feelings and expectations to achieve successful family togetherness with minimal stress.


About the Facilitator

Dr. Stacey Patton is an award-winning journalist, author, and child advocate whose work focuses on race, power, and privilege in child welfare, higher education and American media culture. She was formerly a senior enterprise reporter with The Chronicle of Higher Education she where she covered graduate education, faculty life and research, and race and diversity issues, and she was the paper’s social media guru. She writes frequently about race for The Washington Post, Al Jazeera, BBC News, The, and is a columnist for DAME Magazine. Dr. Patton has taught U.S. and African-American history at Montclair State, Rutgers, and American University. She has appeared on Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, Al Jazeera, BBC and CBS News.

In 2015 she was the recipient of the 2015 Vernon Jarrett Medal for Excellence in Journalism from Morgan State University’s School for Global Journalism and Communication and the Open Society Foundation. Dr. Patton received this award for her coverage on race in higher education. She is also the recipient of awards from the National Association of Black Journalists, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, the National Education Writer’s Association, and the Society of Professional Journalists. In addition to her work as a journalist, she is the author of That Mean Old Yesterday: A Memoir and is currently working on two projects for Beacon Press: “Spare The Kids: Why Whooping Children Won’t Save Black America,” and “Strung Up: The Lynching of African-American Children During Jim Crow.”

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