Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

NCORE Professional Development Academy

PCC NCORE Logo

About the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity

Portland Community College has supported professional development for institutional transformation by sending an interdisciplinary delegation of professionals from across the college to attend the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity in Higher Education (NCORE)

The Office for Professional and Organizational Development (POD) and the Office of Equity and Inclusion (OEI) are pleased to announce the PCC NCORE Professional Development Academy, where 27 NCORE Fellows were selected to share with the college community knowledge and insights gained from their conference experience.

The PCC NCORE Academy provides a year-long platform for sharing and applying learning through presentations, discussions, and goal-setting. This effort supports the college’s strategic planning core theme of Transforming Our Learning Culture Toward Creating a Sense of Belonging and Well-being for Every Student and aligns with our emerging learning pathways for belonging, justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion (B-JEDI).

NCORE provides myriad experiences wherein participants can deepen their learning about the ways in which systemic racism, xenophobia, power, and privilege operate within the context of higher education. NCORE enables participants to imagine and create critical and innovative approaches to breaking down barriers and designing and implementing more culturally responsive and sustaining learning environments.

The NCORE Academy provided funding for 27 employees. Through participation as an NCORE Fellow, we hope to align collective learning at NCORE to help transform departments, programs, and teams throughout the college.

NCORE Academy Objectives

To create space and opportunity for NCORE Fellows to:

  • engage in critical thought and reflection around race in community and in higher education.
  • process the individual, cultural and institutional impact of race and racism on one’s life and work.
  • demonstrate healthy dialogic and professional practices around race, ethnicity, power, and privilege.
NCORE Academy Fellows
  • convene as a cohort prior to the conference to build community, practice dialogic skills, and discuss the NCORE Academy program.
  • share what is learned at NCORE through college presentations within our PCC community.
  • meet monthly as a cohort to reflect, support one another, brainstorm, and enhance our own personal awareness of racial and social justice.
  • participate in NCORE’s Community College Caucus convening.
Laurielle “Lo” Aviles

They/ He

photo of Laurielle AvilesPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Part-Time Faculty & ASL/Eng. Interpreter

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

To bring stronger supports to PCC for our students, faculty and staff or varying backgrounds, experiences and intersections. We deserve a safe, inclusive, anti-racist, accessible place to work and learn.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Oppression can take shape on a college campus in sumerous ways. I continue to keep that in the forefront of my mind when navigating all interactions at PCC, in person, remotely, via policy, etc. When necessary I try to draw attention to questionable events, interactions, and happenings to help incite change. Especially so that my students and colleagues don’t have to do that labor.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

Providing discounted/free access to the conference for our PCC folks.

Martha Bailey

She/ They

headshot photo of martha baileyPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Part-time Faculty

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

To grow in my ability to equitably support students and colleagues

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

I am facilitating a Teaching Week 2021 workshop, “Building Inclusive Classrooms through Student Agency and Autonomy”, which allows me to apply and share some of my learning from NCORE. I continue to reflect on what is happening around me every day with an eye to see where inequity and exclusion exist, and then to consider what actions I can take to work for equity and inclusion. Beyond that, the continuing challenges of pandemic and climate issues raise questions about how to care for everyone that don’t have easy answers.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

I would love to see PCC providing “hosts” for attendees who come to Portland and want to get to know the area with all its problems and possibilities. PCC can also offer volunteers to the conference, so that it runs as smoothly and is as welcoming as possible.

Wendy Berner

She/ Hers

Headshot of Wendy BernerPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Research & Prospect Development Officer, PCC Foundation

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I wanted to learn more about the psychology of white fragility, specifically defensiveness, so that I could identify and practice communication methods that advance authentic conversation about systemic racism.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Numbers CAN lie. For those of us who rely on data and statistics, it’s important to remember they are not objective or free from bias because their collection process is subjective and socially informed.

Magda Christina D’Angelis

She/ Hers/ They/ Theirs

headshot of Magda Christina D'Angelis Primary role at Portland Community College:

Labor Market Data Coordinator & Full-Time Faculty

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

To continue advancing equity work at the college.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Continue to point out microaggressions as they happen.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

Sending as many BIPOC people as possible and to send Deans, Directors, Administrators. Of upmost importance is to send as many employees from Human Resources as possible, including leadership. That department of PCC needs to be doing more than compliance work.

Jana Daugherty

She/ Her

headshot of jana daughertyPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Future Connect Outreach

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

Focusing on equity and social justice is vital in order to show up for students in the best way that I can. Students of color at PCC deserve an institution where they can be fully themselves and be fully seen and celebrated; and where they won’t encounter systemic barriers, institutional racism or microaggressions. All PCC employees have a role to play in creating this environment and participating in NCORE this year allowed me to continue learning and developing my social justice and equity lens.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

In my role at PCC, I work alongside many students of color to support them in navigating systemic barriers and institutional challenges. Since the 2021 NCORE Conference, I’m continuing to reflect on making sure that all of my communication and interactions with students are fully inclusive and welcoming. I want every single student who I talk with to know that PCC welcomes and values them and am continuously working to become a better ally and advocate.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

PCC could support staff/faculty in joining NCORE conference committees and also encourage staff/faculty to attend and participate in the conference. Also, staff/faculty can submit session presentations or proposals for consideration.

Mel DeLeon

She/ Hers

headshot of mel deleonPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Accessible Ed & Disability Resources ASL Interpreting & Transcription Services Coordinator

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

As a person of color and a person new to academia, I wanted to join NCORE to learn how racism has influenced policy and practices within the American educational system.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

3 levels of oppression – Personal, Cultural, Structural. Important to work through all 3 levels. What actions will I take? Recognize, Respond, Redress, Actively Cultivate Equity, Sustain Equity (the last two are anti-racism) I have been reflecting on how we as a college want to align our mission and values with our practices, and how we need to address Personal, Cultural and Structural systems of oppression.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

Local ambassadors- tours of historical PDX sites, FOOD stuff, volunteers on site.

Rachel B. Dixon

She/ Her

headshot of Rachel B. DixonPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Multicultural Center Coordinator

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I wanted to grow in my depth of knowledge regarding BJEDI work as it continues to evolve and grow, and to work with other colleagues as they seek to do the same. In doing so, I hope to continue to make a positive impact in my work at PCC as we collectively work to create an environment where our students feel seen, heard, accepted and that they belong.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

I am taking points regarding creating mentoring programs into MC programming this year; and the connection points I made with other Women of Color is encouragement for us to continue this work at PCC.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

Hosting a welcome event or a mixer of some sort; hopefully we will be able to safely gather and can host at the Cascade campus – even outside in front of the Student Services building (similar to a Say HEY! event).

Sarah Rose Evans

She/ Hers

headshot of Sarah Rose Evans

Primary role at Portland Community College:

Strategic Planning Coordinator

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

To ensure equity is integral in our planning processes

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

I am continuing to reflect on how to include diverse perspectives in Strategic Planning and to ensure each project conducts ongoing equity analysis.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

I think we should be as involved as possible, particularly sending folks who haven’t had the opportunity to attend before.

Pam Hester

She/ Her

Primary role at Portland Community College:

Regional Director, Community Workforce Development

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

To increase my knowledge and skills for advancing racial justice in higher education. I wanted to be inspired by thought leaders and hear from colleagues who are people of color about their experiences. NCORE delivered!

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

The conference included so many different pathways and provided thought-provoking ideas. I continue to think about how to identify white supremacy in our institutional culture and how to subvert it.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

It would be incredible if we could offer opportunities for our employees to attend the conference. Maybe this could be in exchange for working parts of the conference (i.e. registration) in exchange.

James G. Hill

He/ Him/ His

Headshot of James HillPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Public Relations Manager

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I wanted to listen, learn, and challenge the paradigms of whiteness that I’ve lived with unknowingly for most of my life.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

One of the biggest shifts for me since attending NCORE has been the opportunity to evaluate my positionality and privilege. I simply couldn’t see some things that my students encountered because they didn’t exist for me in the same way or at all. One action I am continuing to take as an NCORE Fellow is the listening and learning I continue to do, by reading and discussing and being open to experiences that are different from my own. I hope that as I continue to learn, I can continue to be understanding and supportive with students from all backgrounds.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

Maybe mentorship could be assigned by most salient identities by asking people what identity is most important for them to be paired with (someone who shares your gender identity, racial identity, sexual orientation, disability status, etc).

Jessica Lee

She/ Hers

headshot of jessica leePrimary role at Portland Community College:

Composition Instructor

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

To further/gain skills in fostering a supportive atmosphere for minority faculty, staff, and students

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Workshops on becoming an antiracist educator; being able to recognize and name microaggressions.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

Increased publicity of the conference to the PCC community at large.

Jared Lively

He/ Him

Primary role at Portland Community College:

English and Writing Professor

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I want to become more connected to other voices in the college, outside of my PCC bubble, as we work towards the goal of creating a more equitable environment for students.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

How race and equity issues are fundamentally different in the community college environment than they are in other institutions. These issues are also fundamentally different at PCC, and vary from campus-to-campus. How can we address our specific issues in front of us, without forcing en vogue solutions that may have worked elsewhere? How can we embrace the spirit of NCORE, but also divorce ourselves from it?

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

This is a radical idea, but maybe we should moderate a discussion with the goal of deconstructing the issues people from outside of Portland (or inside of Portland) have with the way we address Race and Equity? I’m sure it would be feisty, because folks have a lot to say, but it could be a good exercise in exploring the dynamic between a region and its movement, or communal effort…I don’t know, I’m just spitballing here.

Susan Martin

She/ Her

Primary role at Portland Community College:

Communication Studies Instructor

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I want to be part of the solution to build a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment. As an instructor, I interact with hundreds of students a year. I feel the sense of urgency to be skillful now implementing best practices that build DEI in the classroom.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Something I am working on is facilitating safe conversations about diversity. I feel like there is an expectation that can be established that allow people to have respectful discussions when our differences clash. Our national narrative is currently so polarized that it is easy for people to stop listening. I want to work on the ways to keep people leaning in to create a brave space.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

The more people that can attend the conference the better. PCC can offer incentives and opportunities to attend. I was thinking they could send have people submit “articles” about their experiences and publish a special edition of school newspaper, website, etc. to highlight the event.

Jake Montie

He/ Him

headshot of jake montiePrimary role at Portland Community College:

Enrollment Services Coordinator – Sylvania Campus

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I have realized in recent years that simply trying to “be a good person” is not enough as we approach our lives and our roles at a community college. Having good intentions is great, but what and whom do they actually help? It is important to me to be a better ally, mentor, and person and participating in NCORE was an opportunity to learn in a place that was safe, but also forced me as a white man to ask uncomfortable questions about my past, my present, my privilege and think about how I wish to shape myself as I stride into the future.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

The thing I am most continuously focused on is taking the lessons from NCORE and other work that I’ve done is that every decision I make, whether it is in an interaction with a student, creating new policies, revamping procedures, has to come from an equity and student centered philosophy. This starts with recognizing my privilege and understanding how that can color my thought processes and immediate reactions to data that I am intaking and then progresses towards how can I put this student in the best position to succeed without destroying their own agency and eschewing the policies of the college.

Taryn Oakley

She/ Her

headshot of Taryn OakleyPrimary role at Portland Community College:

PT ESR faculty member and CBL faculty coordinator

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

To learn new ways to incorporate conversations about race into my curriculum, to be part of a community that can work together to make PCC more equitable.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Re-think our course offerings as we move forward: Hybrid/online science classes could be a really big boost for equity across the community. Also providing more free service for those who could benefit from them- maybe free yoga or meditation classes, forest walks, expanded panther pantry offerings, free childcare for students in need.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

If we sponsor the event could we offer free admission for students? Also holding space for different conversations within different communities. Creating a safe space for conversation surrounding the conference.

Andrea Salyer

She/ Her

Headshot of Andrea SalyerPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Asst. Coordinator of Student Life

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I wanted to attend NCORE to continue building my capacity as a white educator at PCC to be a true ally to BIPOC Students, Staff and Faculty. I wanted to learn more about what professionals and students are doing at different institutions to fight against oppressive policies and support marginalized students, and how I can bring those ideas back to student life and leadership. Lastly, I wanted to challenge myself to be less performative, more action oriented in my commitment to racial justice work and encourage other white colleagues to make that commitment as well.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Mobilizing white colleagues to examine bias and oppression within ourselves and so that we can join the fight to dismantle the racial hierarchy at PCC. My goal is to compassionately and honestly engage myself and white people around me in self reflection, affinity spaces, speaking up and out in oppressive spaces, and most importantly standing in solidarity with BIPOC students, staff and faculty most directly harmed by white supremacist structures at PCC.

I am particularly interested in fighting back against the anti-Critical Race Theory movement growing throughout the country and the state of Oregon. State legislatures and School Boards across the country are passing laws and resolutions that ban honest discussions about race and our racialized history. We need to build coalitions to determine how PCC can support efforts to preserve and expand CRT discourse within our own learning community, locally and nationally.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

PCC could continue to support the NCORE Academy within PCC-It would be awesome to host a few sessions and establish learning communities prior to the NCORE Conference, Then meetings during NCORE (like what happened this year) as well as sessions afterwards to strategize ways to implement what we have learned. I also think that those who have participated in the academy the year prior could support the incoming cohort through peer-peer mentorship/debrief in the future.

Katie Standish

She/ Her

Headshot of Katie StandishPrimary role at Portland Community College:

PT Chemistry Instructor, also First Term Advisor

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I wanted to listen, learn, and challenge the paradigms of whiteness that I’ve lived with unknowingly for most of my life.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

One of the biggest shifts for me since attending NCORE has been the opportunity to evaluate my positionality and privilege. I simply couldn’t see some things that my students encountered because they didn’t exist for me in the same way or at all. One action I am continuing to take as an NCORE Fellow is the listening and learning I continue to do, by reading and discussing and being open to experiences that are different from my own. I hope that as I continue to learn, I can continue to be understanding and supportive with students from all backgrounds.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

I would love to have many PCC employees attend the conference and collaborate, perhaps in a similar fashion to the NCORE Fellowship, but additionally in perhaps a more informal way. It would be great to have a way to connect with other employees that are going ahead of time, to discuss which breakout sessions to attend and how to best make use of the resources. I would also enjoy social time (COVID pending) with out of town attendees, making them feel at home in Portland.

Susan Watson

She/ Her

Headshot of Susan WatsonPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Curriculum Coordinator

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

I wanted tools to bring into my work and I was excited to have a group of colleagues to get a wide range of ideas and feedback from.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

How to put actions that are considered to be authentic and not performative out into the world.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

Talking authentically about protest and activism in Portland and about Portland’s and Oregon’s histories.

Tracee Wells-Braynt

She/ Her

Headshot of Tracee WellsPrimary role at Portland Community College:

Career Specialist

One primary reason why you wanted to participate in NCORE this year:

One primary reason why I wanted to participate in NCORE this year was to engage with a national community of educators and support staff committed to the DEI change work at their perspective academic institutions. I wanted to better connect my personal and the student-lived experiences I have compiled for over 20 years within “a collective voice” and bring subsequent change through what I anticipated I would gain through new vision and insights, innovative organizational models, operational program and classroom practices, among other tools and resources that could better shape the overall student experience in a more positive way. As stated in my NCORE application, I wanted to be part of a learning cohort that “builds bridges, and not walls to student belonging, engagement, retention, and success” for BIPOC communities.

Since attending the 2021 NCORE Conference or participating in the Academy, What is something you continue to reflect upon or an action you are taking within your work at PCC?

Since attending the conference, what I continue to reflect upon and think about are ways I can actively play within the scope of my role, working with the management/career team, and the NCORE Academy, to help bring greater understanding, increased access, equity, support, and even fiscal resources, from center to main campus, and main campus to center. I would like to serve as “a voice”, as mentioned above and inter-campus/center advocate, and change agent that works and serves to help and support our most vulnerable populations, who are becoming student ready (those with multiple barriers to school), and those currently, who are non-traditional center to campus students, enrolled in certificate or degree programs. I think about center-campus processes, collaborations, and connectivity that is more equitable, inclusive positive, and supportive, promoting many BIPOC and other marginalized groups.

What role do you think PCC could play in supporting the 2022 NCORE Conference, which will be held here in Portland, OR?

We can assign committees or teams to help with specific logistical or back-end supports and movement that may be needed to give for a more seamless and efficient flow for the conference organizers. If the event is cleared and can be hosted in-person, we could offer a “kick-off” room/space at the convention center, exclusively for NCORE leaders, staff organizers, and workshop facilitators, that offers light refreshments or even just a refreshment free, courtesy “sitting, rest area, or networking space” for the leaders, staff organizers, and workshop facilitators. Some may have hotel rooms that are further distanced from the convention center. We could also, as the hosting agency, include an audio-visual piece in the room/space (i.e. PCC looping slides – presidential greeting, Stated of Oregon and campus welcome, and/or add student DEI testimonials/success stories, and/or possibly showcase a few pieces of art, paintings, or other DEI-themed art work from current art students.

Lastly, we could also, solicit a brief virtual time block or small in-person space on the conference agenda (at either the conference opening or close), where we (PCC) honors the NCORE leaders with a momentous plaque or other type of special recognition. Of course, we can ensure at least two teams are serving as workshop facilitators. One of which, could be a presentation and sharing the about our very first PCC NCORE Academy (i.e. application process, the collaborative work accomplished, other outcomes/impacts, and data from our fellowship work, what we newly implemented, and/or other learning applications, meaningful exchanges, and professional DEI growth we gained through the academy and using the tools and resources we gained during the 2021 NCORE Conference, while working closely with faculty, staff, and students…Not to mention, shared highlights of our overall experiences with the Listening and Knowledge Community Groups and assignments.