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Foste to give closing keynote at ACPA Midwest Regional Conference

October 9, 2018

LAWRENCE - Zachary (Zak) Foste, assistant professor of higher education administration in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, will give a closing keynote address as part of the 2018 ACPA Midwest Regional Conference in Kansas City on October 16. 

The keynote address will engage participants on how supposedly well-intentioned, progressive white students reproduce the racial status quo on campus, despite their good intentions. Drawing on data from 14 white student leaders, Foste will explore how these heavily engaged student leaders appeared more preoccupied with a presentation of the self as innocent and progressive than any meaningful critique of racism and white supremacy. The presentation will illuminate white student leaders' complicated relationship with race, their desires for innocence, and what such desires say about our approaches to engaging white students on racial justice in student affairs.

The annual ACPA Midwest Regional Conference brings higher education professionals together to examine the changing landscape of the profession, share innovative ideas and best practices, and mindfully connect new professionals and graduate students with established leaders in the field. More information on the conference can be found here.

Foste's research examines how college students with dominant social locations, particularly cisgender men and white students, interpret and make sense of privilege, power, and systemic oppression. Central to this line of scholarship is a belief that educators cannot challenge racism, genderism, and sexism on campus without an attention to those students who produce and normalize such systems. Most recently his work has explored how whiteness functions to underwrite racially hostile and unwelcoming campus climates. 

Foste's dissertation, Narrative Constructions of Whiteness Among White Undergraduates, was awarded the 2018 ACPA Marylu K. McEwen Dissertation of the Year Award. He received a Ph.D. in higher education and student affairs from The Ohio State University; a master's degree in student affairs in higher education from Miami University; and a bachelor's degree. in political science and sociology from Western Illinois University. More information on Foste can be found here.

The Department of Educational Leadership & Policy Studies is housed in the School of Education, a nationally ranked school preparing educators and health/sport/exercise professionals as leaders.  

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