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Health Sciences Diversity Council sponsoring Cultural Competency Speaker Series

The Health Sciences Diversity and Inclusion Council is bringing a three-part Cultural Competency Speaker series to the Health Sciences campus beginning in August.

With financial support from a University of Missouri System Inclusive Excellence grant, the council will provide lectures and discussions on topics including Creating Safe and Inclusive Spaces for the LGBTQIA Community, Maternity Mortality Rate in African-American Mothers, and Ethnopharmacology. Each session will be open to all students, faculty and staff on the Health Sciences campus.

Tamica Lige, diversity council chair, said the speaker series will be geared toward health care professionals and will address a range of topics focusing on diversity and cultural competency in health care.

“We’ve tried to find topics that will be beneficial to the members all four health science schools,” Lige said. “One of our goals is to provide educational programming that can make an impact on knowledge, self-awareness, attitude, and cross-cultural skills.”

The series begins with the program on safe and inclusive spaces on August 8. Kari Jo Freudigmann, M.S, assistant director of LGBTQIA programs and services in the UMKC Office of Student Involvement will be one of two speakers from noon to 2 p.m. in the Health Sciences Building Room 3301. Her co-speaker will be Kimberly Tilson, BSN, RN, nurse care manager for the Behavioral Health Community Access Program at Truman Medical Center and a Health Science District LGBTQIA patient care advocate. This is a two-part session, with part one being a 101 basic knowledge session and part two being an application skills session.

The part one session will help participants identify issues facing the LGBTQIA community, demonstrate fundamental skills to become a community ally, and reduce the fear of reprisal and discrimination. Participants in this session may also receive 25 wellness points toward their Total Rewards benefits package.

Registration is encouraged but not required to attend. To register, go to https://tinyurl.com/CCSSregistration. Those unable to attend but interested in the program can also take part online via Zoom through the link https://umkc.zoom.us/j/8162352833. The program will also be repeated in September for those unable to attend in August.

On October 3, participants can put their new knowledge to work during part two, the application and skills session. In that program from 10 a.m. to noon, Henry Ng, M.D., MPH, a public health LGBT health physician leader and advisor, will facilitate a panel composed of members from the LGBTQIA community and clinicians in a question and answer session followed by breakout sessions with video vignettes and small group discussions.

Traci Johnson, M.D., FACOG, UMKC assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology, will lead the session on the maternal mortality rate in African-American mothers on September 4. Cesar Compadre, Ph.D., professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences and director of the Biomedical Visualization Center at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, will speak on ethnopharmacology on October 30.