During her presentation, Imad highlighted the need for a shift in higher education culture to address the burnout epidemic affecting institutions across the country. She proposed creating “resilient spaces” where colleagues and students, particularly those from historically underserved and marginalized backgrounds, can develop the necessary skills, resources, and support to overcome challenges and learn from them.
Imad emphasized the importance of addressing intergenerational trauma and reparative humanism in higher education. She encouraged attendees to discuss these concepts in small groups at their tables, challenging them to implement these ideas in their work.
After each small group discussion, volunteers were asked to share their takeaways with the room. Among the ideas brought up were strategies for helping students navigate campus resources better and working towards challenging systemic inequalities in higher education. Attendees also examined unspoken agreements that may be harmful to students’ resilience.
The participants left feeling empowered to make their courses more resilience-friendly by checking in with students about how they felt about the course and being open to making adjustments, including reducing content if necessary while still meeting learning objectives. Imad reminded them that resilience is not a one-size-fits-all solution but rather our ability to bounce back when we face adversity or trauma.
Future sessions will occur during Winter and Spring Quarters, with information about registration posted on the Equity in Mental Health series website as details are finalized.