Hosting Inclusive Events

In a place like Yale, diverse representation should matter to every single one of us.

Navigating spaces that center the voices and perspectives of historically excluded people.

We know that in Graduate Professional spaces, the need to "take the mask off" and find a space that allows you to be your true, unfiltered self is important. Especially at a 300+ year old Ivy League Institution. For black, brown, indigenous, queer, and multiple other identities that have faced historical exclusion, this is of course paramount importance in creating community on a wider level across the YDS campus.

While no student can be denied attendance to a student organization event, there are ways in which you can communicate the need for a safe space to be created for members who come from these identities and backgrounds.

Planning to host an event specifically for creating space for historically excluded identities? Consider the following language you could insert into your event information or marketing flyer:

  • "This event will center around the experience of [Black/Brown/Indigenous/ Queer/Trans etc.] communities. If you are an ally in these spaces, please consider being the best ally possible by not attending this event. This will allow our friends and peers in the [Black/Brown/Indigenous/Queer/Trans etc.] community to own and take control of the space without fear of prejudice, having to do self-explanation, or feeling intruded on."

Diversity in Event Programming

A great event both recognizes and then incorporates DEIB strategy. Consider these checklist items when creating your event.

Consider attendees religious and other obligations; check calendars for holy days or holidays; check school schedules for families!

Ensure your speaker panel incorporates a broad variety of gender, race, LGBTQ+ status, national origin, ability, veteran status etc.

Vendors matter! Use local vendors, and try to use vendors from historically underrepresented backgrounds (black/LGBTQ+owned etc.)

Find expert perspective on topics/content beyond your own circles.

Allow anonymous questions, encourage spaces for judgement-free questions.

Consider a hybrid event that will allow you to reach a greater audience and more speaker options.

Is your event's location accessible? Does it meet the needs of your audience?

Consider offering transportation, or making attendees aware of local public transportation.

Ensure inclusive signage, make sure you have quiet spaces e.g. prayer room, nursing parent room etc.

Consider reserving seats for vision or hearing impaired guests.

Add a land acknowledgement at the beginning of your event.

Consider including accessibility requests in your registration form.