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Podcast Production

Create podcasts on knowledge, work and experiences of Black academics

Project Leader(s): Heather Washington and Rachael Woldoff, Eberly College of Arts and Sciences’ Department of Sociology and Anthropology

As co-chairs of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology’s Antiracism Committee and co-instructors of the course “How to Be an Antiracist,” Heather Washington and Rachael Woldoff will produce a podcast entitled “Ask a Black Professor.” The podcast will focus on sharing the knowledge, work and experiences of Black academics in an accessible and interactive way for students, faculty and the wider community. The bi-weekly podcast will air in Fall 2021 and draw on our networks to include guest speakers from WVU, HBCUs and other universities, as well as local, regional and national organizations. We would cover topics including: “What is it like to be a Black/Latinx/Indigenous Professor?,” “How to Become a Professor,” “Black Professors and Activism,” “Black in White Spaces,” and “Antiracism in the Classroom.” We will also create a companion interactive social media group where faculty and students could connect and submit questions. This project addresses the critical and chronic issues of Black faculty and student recruitment and retention at predominantly white institutions (PWIs). The number of tenure-track Black faculty at WVU has not significantly increased since the 1970s and Black students remain underrepresented across all levels of study. Given the current budgetary climate and concerns about future enrollment, it is imperative that we find ways to attract and support Black students. Second, given that WVU does not have a formal mentoring program for Black faculty and students, many Black faculty are isolated in their units, and few students have even one Black instructor in their academic careers, the podcast can serve a source of mentorship and networking necessary for Black faculty and student success.