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Educational Justice Conference

 2nd Annual SVC Educational Justice Conference is scheduled for Friday, September 29th 2017!


Registration is required – please RSVP by Tuesday, September 26th at 12:00 pm (noon)!



To promote multicultural and social justice awareness, education and appreciation for diversity. We will achieve success through efforts that aim to:

  • Promote diversity and inclusion within the educational system in our community.
  • Develop leaders to promote social change and empowerment of their identity.
  • Create spaces which support diversity education, equity and cultural awareness.


We are committed to transforming institutional systems by removing barriers and promoting equity and inclusion in education.

Agenda at a Glance
8:00-9:00am: Light refreshments in the Multipurpose Room
9:00-9:30am: Registration in McIntyre Hall
9:30-9:45am: Welcome
9:45-10:45am: Morning Keynote Address – Victor Rodriguez, “Disrupting Oppression Starts from Within”
11:00am-12:15pm: Session 1
12:20-1:00pm: Lunch provided
1:00-2:15pm: Session 2
2:20-2:30pm: Closing

Keynote Speaker – Victor Rodriguez, “Disrupting Oppression Starts from Within.”

Victor grew most of his life in Skagit County and is the son of two Mexican immigrant farmworkers. His professional background includes community organizing, social work, and public health working issues related to child, youth, and family health, and social justice. Victor is currently a program manager at the Tacoma-Pierce County Health Department. He received his MSW degree from the University of Washington and an interdisciplinary Bachelor of Arts degree from Western Washington University.

Sessions are designed for middle, high school, and college students and those in higher education. Sessions will focus on Identity & Culture and Social Justice & Community, such as:

  • Hidden Stories: Gangs, Healing and Hope in Skagit County – Beneath the scare of gangs in our community, there are deeper stories: stories of great pain the public does not see, as well as stories of great resilience—and potential leadership—in the streets that the community needs. Chris Hoke, gang pastor Tierra Nueva and chaplain at Skagit County Jail and Juvenile Detention for the past decade, will explore these stories with two young men who have lived through immigrant childhoods and gang violence, walked paths of healing, hope, and, together, helped shape Skagit County’s growing gang outreach.
  • Unpacking the Prison Industrial Complex – Come get informed on what is going on at Skagit Valley College and colleges around the state surrounding efforts to connect formerly incarcerated students to the college experience. We will be looking at the prison industrial complex as a whole, and examining some of the key factors of oppression inherent in the system that impact our communities inside and outside of jails and prisons. We will address: why are inmates paid less than $1/hour for work in prisons? Why do 2/3 of people go back to prison once released? How does the prison industrial complex tie in to long standing systems of racial oppression? How is the new Skagit County Jail connected to all of this?
  • Danza Azteca, Identity and Culture – Come and join us in our workshop! We will be dancing Danza Azteca, showing you how to dance and also sharing information of why we do certain dance moves. Furthermore, we will be having a talk about the importance of our identity and culture. Hope to see you there!
  • Gender Justice: Breaking Down “Normal” – In this workshop we will discuss various topics surrounding gender, coming out, and how to be a social justice warrior for rights LGBTQ folk. No matter how you identify with your gender or sexuality this conversation is one to be a part of. We will “Break down Binary” by discussing gender identity, gender expression, and biological sex. As well as, discuss “Coming Out: Do’s and Don’ts” to better prepare you in the event of… and lastly, incorporating the conference theme: offer various ways we each can contribute to society by becoming “Social Justice Warriors” striving for a safer more inclusive world and corrupting ‘the Golden Rule’. Based on curriculum developed by Sam Killerman, It’s Pronounced Metrosexual and The Safe Zone Project.
  • Systematic Racism Curriculum Project – The Systemic Racism Curriculum Project (SRCP) is a participatory action research project aimed at developing curriculum on systemic racism. The SRCP research team will lead an interactive workshop exploring their ongoing work surrounding curriculum development for educating people in general, and white people specifically, about systemic racism. White Americans are less likely than people of color to have a systemic understanding of racism due to an “epistemology of ignorance” related to white people’s socialization. The SRCP engages people in confronting that ignorance through investigations of whiteness and its relationship to systemic racism. The research team will share their research process, contextualize the research by exploring pertinent themes, constructs and methodologies and carry out an interactive activity with conference attendees. This workshop will introduce the essence of the research and provide an opportunity for attendees to engage in dialogue surrounding systemic racism. An additional goal is to establish a collaborative relationship with Skagit Valley College so that a piece of this project can specifically address systemic racism the Mt. Vernon area.
  • Education is Our Weapon – This session will provide attendees the opportunity to reflect on their own educational experiences and disseminate messages from our current education system and examine how we are individually reflected in our curriculum. We will review the important role of teachers in our lives, as well as review national and local facts about our school demographics. Examine the importance of our education for us, our families, communities, and younger Latino/aX generations.

Planning Committee:

Yadira Rosales, Multicultural Student Services

Enrique Lopez, Regional Migrant Coordinator, NWESD 189

Dr. Mari AcobNash, Associate Vice President of International Education

Dr. Brenda Valles, Executive Director of Equity and Inclusion

Manny Espinoza, Gear Up Grant Coordinator for MVSD

Anusha Hewawasam, Cascade Job Corps College and Career Academy

Marco Morales, Cascade Job Corps College and Career Academy

Katelynn Orellana, Student Success Center


1st Annual SVC Diversity Conference

Download Diversity Conference Program