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Unit Contributions to Equity, Diversity, Inclusion 6475

Academic Years: 
Russian and East European Studies
1. Faculty: 

REEES's core faculty is small, but diverse, in terms of its strong representation of women and international scholars. Although REEES has not been in a position to make a permanent hire in a number of years, it has participated directly or weighed in on searches in the CHC and EALL that resulted in the hiring of diverse candidates who now serve as core or participating faculty in REEES and who have helped to expand REEES's offerings and, more importantly, to teach courses such as "Russian and Chinese Realisms" and "Self and Other in Russian Culture," which have attracted students from underrepresented groups. If allowed to hire in the future, REEES will make recruiting diverse candidates a high priority.

2. Staff: 

REEES does not have its own staff but is housed in OCIAS.

3. Graduate Programs: 

REEES has had considerable success in the last ten years in recruiting underrepresent U.S. minorities and international students from Azerbaijan, China, Korea, Russia, and Ukraine. Almost all of our graduate students receive full funding in the form of GTF support, and having access to GTF support has been essential for attracting diverse U.S. and international candidates.

Although our budget is small, we provide each of our M.A. students with the opportunity to apply for $250 once in their career to offset travel expenses to a regional, national, or international. Typically students apply for this funding in their second in the M.A. program, when they are completing their M.A. theses. REEES also holds a Biennial REEES Graduate Student Conference, which provides M.A. students in REEES and Ph.D. students in allied disciplines, to present research on various aspects of Russian, East European, and Eurasian studies.
Given the geographical orientation of the discipline, and the fact that there is a sizable Slavic community in the state of Oregon, REEES is naturally concerned with providing its students at the graduate as well as undergraduate level with a global education, but one that also speaks to the diversity of the state. Our unit is unique among similar units across the nation insofar as we have a number of scholars working on and offering classes on Eurasia and on Russian-Asian literary and cultural connections.

4. Undergraduate Programs: 

REEES has done an excellent job in recent years of attracting a diverse student body that includes women, recent Slavic immigrants or children of immigrants, and first-generation college students. Unfortunately, REEES has a small budget and is not in a position to offer much in the way of financial support to undergraduates. However, as outlined in the previous section, we offer a diverse curriculum, and sponsor cultural events that are of great interest to the students and that foster awareness of the Slavic community in Oregon and beyond.

5. Outreach and Partnerships: 

Despite our historically small Services and Supplies budget, which was cut by 39% several years ago, REEES has played a very active role in sponsoring activities that foster knowledge and understanding about Russia, Eastern Europe, and Eurasia, as well as the Slavic community in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. These events include, lectures, colloquia, a biennial graduate conference, musical performances, Russian teas, and an annual Russian play. All of these events are free and open to the public and are well attended by students, faculty, and community members alike.

6. Other: 

In winter 2014, REEES completed an extensive self-study in connection with its fifteen-year external program review. Please see this program review for a more detailed discussion of REEES's past diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. Recent and upcoming events include a conference on "Russians in the Pacific Northwest: From Fort Ross to the Aleutian Islands" (April 6-7, 2018), which will include papers on the complex history of relations between Russians and Native Americans in the region, and a combined faculty and graduate student workshop on gender equity and inclusion in the Russian language classroom.