The Yale BBS Diversity and Inclusion Collective (YBDIC)

The Yale BBS Diversity and Inclusion Collective (YBDIC) is committed to fostering the intellectual and personal growth of underrepresented minority (URM) students in BBS. Our central mission focuses on a three-pronged approach: student engagement, student empowerment, and advancement.

The student engagement division aims to increase the representation of URM scholars in BBS by advancing progressive recruitment initiatives coupled with student outreach to engage the next generation of minority scientists.
 
The student empowerment division tackles the historical legacy of patterns and practices that have led to the exclusion of minority students in STEM. Through this division, we aim to empower minority students and address and alleviate historical and psychological burden that comes with being a minority in STEM. Through the appointment of dedicated YBDIC fellows for each track in BBS, we will be able to gradually create more inclusive training environments at the department level – and we believe this will culminate into institutional change.

The student advancement division is committed to preparing minority students in BBS to successfully navigate the next stage of their academic career and transition into non-academic or academic sectors. By creating a dedicated URM faculty mentoring network and leveraging our alumni relationships, we will be able to provide URM students with models and mentors as they traverse the next stage of their academic career. Collectively, through the concerted of each branch we aim to foster individual empowerment and lasting institutional change.

The schedule below reflects a carefully curated agenda to focus on our theme this year: Belonging. 


YBDIC Spring Pilot Schedule 2019

Student Empowerment

  • Event: “How to Choose the Right Lab”
  • Date: Thursday, February 28th, 2019
  • Time: 6pm – 7pm
  • Description: This event is the second installation of a 3-part series for 1st year underrepresented  students in BBS. YBDIC fellows from each track will walk students through the process of choosing their thesis lab/advisor. As this is one of the most important decisions in graduate school, we believe this event will help guide students towards the best decision that fits their respective criteria. A short presentation on the parameters of choosing the correct lab will be presented, followed by an open panel from students representing each track in BBS, and then we will close with one-on-one mentoring as a follow-up. We also encourage students to reach out to the panel members if they need any additional help towards finding the right fit.

Student Engagement

  • Event: “STARS II Mentoring Mixer”
  • Date: Monday, March 4th, 2019
  • Time: 5:30pm - 7:30pm
  • Description:  As part of our recruitment efforts, YBDIC has partnered with the STARS II program at Yale University. This program aims to increase the representation of minority students and low-income students in STEM. The purpose of this event is for STARS II URM Juniors and Seniors who are interested in pursuing graduate school, medical school, or MD/PhD programs to talk to current URM graduate and medical students in BBS and learn about their journey, application process, and ask general questions. 

Student Engagement

  • Event: “Second Look Weekend”
  • Date: Sunday,  March 24th, 2019
  • Time: 12pm - 3pm
  • Description:   Second-Look weekend provides minority students that have been given offers of admission with an additional chance to return to campus and learn more about the BBS program. Specifically, we will use this opportunity to discuss perspectives on being a URM student in BBS and emphasize the strengths of the training program and the BBS learning community. This year, YBDIC will be hosting an informational panel with the YBDIC fellows representing each track in BBS. The panel will answer questions from admitted students and talk discuss track specific questions. We will also be holding more intimate ‘coffee chats’ with recruits from each visiting track to dive deeper into our experiences at Yale and the strengths within each department.

Student Empowerment

  • Event: “On Belonging: YBDIC Fireside Chat”
  • Date: Thursday, March 28th, 2019
  • Time: 6pm – 7pm
  • Description: The purpose of this event is to provide a forum for URM students in BBS to have open discussions about issues that disproportionately affect them, specifically isolation. This will be a relaxed and informal discussion led by YBDIC leadership about cultural and scientific identities and what it means to belong in STEM. We aim to use these “Fireside Chats” to build and strengthen the URM community in BBS This is an excellent opportunity to unwind, connect with new mentors, meet students in other tracks, and find community.
Student Advancement
  • Event: BBS Minority Faculty Panel: Entering Academia I (“PI Blueprint”)
  • Date: Wednesday, May 8th, 2019
  • Time: 5pm – 6pm
  • Description:  To increase the representation of URM students in academia models and mentors are critical. This semester, YBDIC will be hosting a panel of URM BBS Faculty in a guided discussion about the road to academia with important insight about this journey as a minority scholar. This is a two-part series and part I will focus on the “cost” of entering academia, such as work-life balance etc. Invited panel speakers include: Dr. Priti Kumar, Dr. Daniel Colon-Ramos, Dr. Enrique De La Cruz. We are looking forward to get invaluable advice from the members of our esteemed panel.
Student Advancement 
  • Event: BBS Minority Faculty Panel: Entering Academia I (“Cultivating Lab Culture”)
  • Date: Wednesday, May 22nd, 2019
  • Time: 5pm – 6pm
  • Description:   For the second part of our installment we will be hosting a panel of URM BBS Faculty in a guided discussion about the road to academia with important insight about this journey as a minority scholar. Part II will focus on scientific and cultural identity in academia and how this extends into cultivating an inclusive training environment (and the challenges associated with this). Invited panel speakers include: Dr. Anton Bennett, Dr. Nii Addy, and Dr. Paul Turner.
Student Empowerment  
  • Event: "On Belonging," Keynote Address by Dean Darin Latimore
  • Date: Wednesday, June 5th, 2019
  • Time: 5pm – 6pm
  • Description:    Deputy Dean and Chief Diversity Officer, Dean Darin Lattimore, will be leading a discussion “On Belonging” as our inaugural speaker for our annual End of Year Address. Many minority students, scholars, and faculty struggle with belonging in academia. Feelings of imposter syndrome, isolation, and cultural dissonance are compounded in training environments with low representation of scientists of color. Dean Lattimore will tackle these issues and provide an insightful and empowering talk to stir the waters and begin this compelling and necessary conversation.