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We're Not OK
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Book description

In the United States, only 6% of the 1.5 million faculty in degree-granting postsecondary institutions is Black. Research shows that, while many institutions tout the idea of diversity recruitment, not much progress has been made to diversify faculty ranks, especially at research-intensive institutions. We're Not Ok shares the experiences of Black faculty to take the reader on a journey, from the obstacles of landing a full-time faculty position through the unique struggles of being a Black educator at a predominantly white institution, along with how these deterrents impact inclusion, retention, and mental health. The book provides practical strategies and recommendations for graduate students, faculty, staff, and administrators, along with changemakers, to make strides in diversity, equity, and inclusion. More than a presentation of statistics and anecdotes, it is the start of a dialogue with the intent of ushering actual change that can benefit Black faculty, their students, and their institutions.


‘This book spoke to me on a personal level. This excerpt so pointedly references the challenge: ‘...a handful of People of Color amongst hundreds of White employees is not racial diversity.’ True racial diversity should also embrace inclusion. The book addresses the consequences and impact when a minimalist approach to diversity occurs in higher education. Diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging are deliberate, strategic choices implemented when you value others.’

Karen Armstrong - The Pennsylvania State University, USA

‘We’re Not OK is an extremely necessary and foundational work by the authors which illuminates practical strategies for supporting and retaining Black faculty successfully in academia. At a time where institutions are reimagining their diversity strategic plans and assessing their equitable hiring practices, this book is a must-read that provides both critical insights and solutions that are useful for every post-secondary professional committed to diversity, equity, social change, and inclusion.’

Rassheedah Watts - Chief Diversity Officer, and author of How to Be An Ally and Create Inclusion Using The A.C.A Pillars

‘We’re Not OK is a gem. At a time when faculty diversity in higher education is imperative, it sheds critical light on the experiences of Black faculty and the challenges faced by some in the academy. Issues of diversity and inclusion have been challenging campuses for years. Still, We’re Not OK illustrates that many of the problems are structural and deeply ingrained in the history of higher education institutions. This book offers a timely and much-needed conversation that seeks ways to move beyond ideological discussions to focus on how we can build institutional capacity. Several authors note that the work must be carried out by all faculty, staff, and students in everything the university or college does.’

Paulette Dilworth - Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, The University of Alabama at Birmingham, USA

‘I'm highly recommending We're Not OK to every Blackademic who thinks the grass might be greener at PWIs.’

LaTonya Summers - Assistant Professor, Jacksonville University, USA

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  • Chapter 1 - Why Are You Talking White? Code-Switching in Academia
    pp 11-29


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