Diversity Conference Keynote is LEADER in Racism Research
The keynote speaker for the 4th Annual UC Diversity conference on April 18 will be Helen Neville, University of Illinois (Champaign) Provost Fellow and Chair of the Counseling Psychology Program. Professor of Educational Psychology and African American Studies, Dr. Neville is known for her ground breaking research on racism.
Dr. Neville will share her research and validated scale to assess color-blind racial attitudes or the denial, distortion, and minimization of the existence of racism. Findings in this new line of research are providing support for emerging theoretical articulations, such that greater denial of the existence of racism on a structural level have been related to: (a) greater levels of racial and gender intolerance among students and community members and (b) lower levels of self-reported and observed multicultural therapy competencies among counselors. For White college students, adopting a color-blind racial perspective also has been related to greater racial prejudice against Blacks and increased fear and distrust of racial and ethnic minorities. For Blacks, ignoring the influence of racism in the lives of people of color have been related to increased levels of internalized oppression and victim-blaming ideology.
Historically, Dr. Neville’s research interests have focused on three interrelated areas: general and cultural factors influencing stress and coping processes, evaluation of the effectiveness of diversity-related programs, and multicultural education. Her research in the first area has centered on examining general and cultural factors influencing rape survivors, post-assault recovery process and African American students' psychosocial and educational adjustment to predominantly white universities. She is particularly interested in understanding common experiences that transcend race, ethnicity, and class background in adjusting to stressful events, as well as teasing out the more culture-specific factors related to this adjustment.