Social Justice Month - awareness knowledge action

November 2017

The President's Commission on Social Justice is pleased to announce SCSU’s Social Justice Month. In support of Southern's mission that indicates our commitment to academic excellence, access, social justice, and service for the public good, Social Justice Month is a focused opportunity to ask ourselves to consider our role in challenging injustice, valuing diversity, and creating a climate of inclusion.

Images of students, faculty, and staff each with writing on their bodies

Signature events

Annual Expressions of Social Justice Talent Show

Wednesday, November 1
Opening Reception: 7:00 p.m.
Talent Show: 8:00 p.m.
Michael J. Adanti Student Center ballroom and lobby

Join us as we kick off Social Justice Month at an opening reception in the ballroom lobby!

Southern students perform poetry, songs, and dance -- taking the opportunity to address some of the critical topics of diversity and social justice they’re most passionate about that impact our community.

Michael Brown Sr. and Dr. David Ragland - Chosen for Change, “A Father’s Perspective”

Tuesday, November 7
7:30 p.m.
Lyman Center

This event has been canceled. Michael Brown Sr. sends his deepest apologies that he is unable to speak at the originally scheduled event at Southern on November 7, 2017. Due to severe health problems with his wife, he is unable to be away from his family at this time.

Dr. David Ragland leads a presentation and audience question and answer session with Michael Brown Sr., whose son, unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown Jr., was shot and killed In Ferguson, Mo., on August 9, 2014.

Brown Sr. decided to turn the pain and challenges of losing his son into an opportunity for change. Thus, the “Chosen for Change Foundation” was born in loving memory.

The organization is dedicating to empowering youth and helping them realize their potential for greatness. Today, Brown Sr. shares the story of his son and his foundation at colleges and universities across the nation.  “Because of my son’s death and the justice we’re still seeking, hurting people, grieving people who’ve lost their children to gun violence or police brutality, reach out to me. They invite me to speak at gatherings. There is a small level of comfort in being in the company of the wounded, the lost, the other parents who understand that we can’t possibly ‘move on.’ ” – Mike Brown Sr.


David Ragland, PhD, is cofounder and co-director of the Truth Telling Project and a visiting professor at Pacifica Graduate Institute. He studied critical race issues, peace education, philosophy and philosophy of education at the University of Toledo; Teachers College, Columbia University; The New School for Social Research; and Washington University of St. Louis. In the early days of the Ferguson uprising, Ragland helped found the Truth Telling Project so marginalized voices could be heard and help move society toward recognition of this experience to lay the groundwork for healing, reconciliation and social transformation.

Dear World

Thursday, November 16
Open Portrait Session: 10:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Michael J. Adanti Student Center, lower level (outside of the bookstore)
Story Telling Event: 7:30 p.m. Michael J. Adanti Student Center Theater

Having traveled the nation, the award-winning Dear World team returns to Southern. During the day, the team and our volunteers will take portraits of members of the campus community who send a message to the world written on their skin.  The Dear World experience culminates at a participatory evening finale, with the team sharing portraits and stories that will make you smile, cry and laugh out loud. Select students get the chance to share the stories behind their powerful portraits with their peers.

Our Journey to Social Justice . . . Next Steps

Wednesday November 29
5:00 p.m.
Michael J. Adanti Student Center Ballroom

Join us for this special event that recognizes the many contributions that were made to bring social justice education and awareness to our campus. There will be performances by winners of the social justice talent show, useful resources that can help you to continue your journey and an inspiring example from Jesse Turner who will tell his story of his walk to Washington.


View more

One-on-One with President Joe

Learn about President Joe's earliest experience with social justice.

Group Dialogue Guidelines

Interested in bringing social justice topics into your organization's or department's meetings? The social justice committee has developed guidelines and resources to support you as you engage in dialogue around difficult social justice issues relevant to your community.

Download Guidelines (PDF)

Take the Campus Climate Survey

We want to know about your Southern experience!

Check your SCSU email account for a link to complete an anonymous Campus Climate survey. This 15-minute survey will allow you to share your thoughts and ideas about our campus climate. All participants will be entered into a drawing for a number of prizes. Hurry, the survey closes on December 15th, 2017.


Participants wil be entered in to a drawing for a number of prizes.

  • Priority registration for Fall 2018 semester
  • Skybox for your guests attending the Spring 2018 graduation ceremony
  • Complimentary Spring Fest tickets

View All Prizes

Student Prizes

  • Priority registration for Fall 2018 semester
  • Skybox for your guests attending the Spring 2018 graduation ceremony
  • Complimentary Spring Fest tickets
  • Selfie with President Joe
  • Spring 2018 Student Fitness Center membership
  • Reserved parking space in the main lot, labeled “I shared my Southern Pride”
  • Portrait sitting at SCSU
  • Free cap and gown for Spring 2018 graduation
  • Owl swag bag
  • Dunkin Donuts gift cards
  • Starbucks gift card
  • $100 discount on the Senior Class Trip
  • Amazon gift cards

Faculty/Staff Prizes

  • Pizza lunch with President Joe and five colleagues
  • Spring 2018 Fitness Center membership with fitness evaluation and personalized fitness plan
  • Complimentary tickets to a Lyman Center show of your choice (pending availability)
  • Reserved parking space in the main lot, labeled “I shared my Southern Pride”
  • Portrait sitting at SCSU
  • Owl swag bag
  • Dunkin Donuts gift cards
  • Starbucks gift card
  • Monthly fresh flower bouquet for 5 months

Apply to One of Eight Grants Available

A total of eight grants are available to support creative/scholarly activities, events and initiatives related to social justice here at SCSU and beyond.

As a way to champion the values shared by members of the Southern Connecticut State University (SCSU) community while respecting our differences, we want to encourage the support of activities, events and initiatives that lead to the development of communities and efforts characterized by social justice.

All members of the SCSU community are welcome to apply for the social justice grants; this includes faculty, staff and students from across the campus.

  • Category I: $2,500
    Two grants available
  • Category II: $1,000
    Two grants available
  • Category III: $500
    Four grants available

Apply Now

Top Owl Award

The Top Owl Social Justice Award is given to recognize contributions in helping our University achieve our mission of creating and sustaining an inclusive community that appreciates, celebrates and advances student and campus diversity at Southern Connecticut State University. This award, selected by the President’s Commission on Social Justice, will be awarded during the months of (September, October, November, December, January, February, & March) to recognize the contributions, leadership and service of a worthy faculty, staff, part-time and full-time student.

Nominate yourself or a member of the Southern Community who works to address issues of diversity, inclusion and social justice through:

  • education of self and others;
  • participation in events, programs, and activities addressing diversity and social justice issues;
  • advocacy with and on behalf of targeted communities; and
  • organizing around diversity, inclusion and social justice issues for sustainable change at SCSU

Nominate Now

Get Involved

There are many opportunities to get involved and volunteer.