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Jan.12, 2004

U-M experts available to discuss 50th anniversary of Brown v. the Board of Education decision and the case's ongoing legacy

ANN ARBOR, Mich.—University of Michigan experts are available to discuss topics related to the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case of Brown v. Board of Education. The court's 1954 ruling ended segregation in public schools.

The University, which successfully argued the case for diversity in higher education in the U.S. Supreme Court, will sponsor many events during its 2004 winter term to commemorate the case and its legacy of increased diversity. The Brown sisters will speak at U-M today, the first of a series of Brown-related events.

The theme semester, coordinated by the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, is offering more than 30 undergraduate courses specially designed to promote deeper learning about the topic. The instructors include former U-M President James Duderstadt.

The theme semester will offer students numerous courses related to the court case and related race issues. Some U-M experts teaching courses related to the Brown theme are available for interviews.

For more information, visit http://www.umich.edu/~urel/brown50/events.html

Paula Allen-Meares , School of Social Work dean, Norma Radin Collegiate Professor of Social Work, and professor of Education, can discuss social work services in schools. She can also address the needs of pupils who are at risk of educational failure, as a consequence of institutional policies and practices that discriminate. She is the principal investigator of the School's Global Program on Youth, an initiative supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, and co-principal investigator of the National Institute of Mental Health Social Work Research Center on Poverty, Risk and Mental Health. She is available at (734) 764-5347 or pameares@umich.edu

Charles Behling , psychology lecturer, focuses on ways to get members of different ethnic groups to better understand each other. His course gives students a foundation in the skills needed to facilitate multicultural group interactions. The course addresses intergroup dialogues, prejudice stereotyping and their effects on groups. He can be reached at (734) 936-9094 or cbehling@umich.edu

James Duderstadt , U-M president from 1988 to 1996 and university professor of science and engineering, says the University offers an important case study on how social institutions respond to the changing needs of society. He will focus on the evolution of major issues facing U-M and higher education, such as student activism, diversity, national influence global outreach and intercollegiate athletics. Duderstadt, who has been on the faculty since 1968, also serves as director of the Millennium Project, a research center in the Michigan Media Union focused on the impact of technology on research and teaching. He can be reached at (734) 647-7300 or jjd@umich.edu

Reynolds Farley , sociology professor and researcher in U-M's Population Studies Center, argues that Detroit was the world's most important metropolis during the 20th century because of the city's fundamental role in developing the automobile, modern industrial production systems and in providing the "Arsenal of Democracy'' during World War II. Yet, more than in other cities, economic, racial and geographic polarization also played out in Detroit. The course includes several field trips to Detroit. Farley can be reached at (734) 764-7303 or renf@umich.edu

Scott Kurashige , assistant professor of history, American culture and Asian/Pacific islander studies, can speak on how race-related issues have impacted American cities. Kurashige's course will include a service-learning component with students creating cooperative projects involved with revitalizing Detroit. Kurashige can be reached at (734) 764-6305 or kurashig@umich.edu

Larry Rowley , assistant professor of Higher Education and Afroamerican and African Studies, is teaching a course on higher education's role in the social development of African Americans. Rowley says there has not been a clear understanding of the social, economic and political mechanisms that have affected higher education. He can speak on a host of African American-related higher education issues from the early 20 th century through the present. He can be reached at (734) 764-5514 or llrowley@umich.edu

Denise Sekaquaptewa , assistant professor of psychology, is teaching "Stereotyping and Gender and Racial Diversity in School and Work Settings." She has done extensive research on s tereotyping and prejudice from an information processing perspective. She can be reached at (734) 647-9685 or dsekaqua@umich.edu

Fran Zorn , comprehensive studies lecturer, is teaching a reading and writing seminar called "Insiders/Outsiders," using works of fiction to examine events that profoundly affect people in racially mixed communities as well as barriers created by class and gender. Zorn can be reached at (734) 764-6410 or franzorn@umich.edu

Contact: Jared Wadley
Phone: (734) 936-7819
E-mail: jwadley@umich.edu

or

Contact: Joe Serwach
Phone: (734) 647-1844
E-mail: jserwach@umich.edu