About Sheri

 
Overview

The first question I always ask is, “What if you knew you had the power to transform society?” We each have that power, but most of us don’t realize it. Systems of inequality are not natural, they have been built into society and if we understand how and why they were built, we can learn to rebuild our communities in more equitable ways. My passion is providing supportive spaces for people to learn about systems of inequality and my goal is to empower people to envision and create equity within their spheres of influence.

I am privileged to have been a Social Justice Educator for almost 30 years. My work has ranged from high school students to professional adults and from one-time workshops to semester-long courses. Whatever the venue or whoever the audience, I hope to dispel the stigma of talking about inequality and to inspire the desire to create positive social change.

Through administrative roles as the Director of Equity and Social Justice at the Ethel Walker School and the Coordinator of Diversity Education at Texas A&M University, I developed innovative curricular and co-curricular programs for faculty, students and staff. As an instructor at The University of Massachusetts, Springfield College, and Smith College, I taught graduate and undergraduate courses about systemic oppression.

I was fortunate to study with many of the leading scholars of oppression theory at The University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where I earned a doctorate in Social Justice Education. There, my research focused on teaching about systemic racism and the intersections of stratification beliefs and conceptualizations of racism.

​My positionality as a white, middle class, heterosexual woman provides the lens through which I have learned and understand these issues. I hope that my lived experience and perspective can be helpful to others as they work to understand how systems of oppression impact their lives and organizations

EXPERIENCE

25 Years Teaching & Administrative Experience 

 

Doctorate in Social Justice Education 

 

Extensive Workshop & Curriculum Development

Experienced & Engaging Facilitator 

E-mail :

sschmidt@mac.com  

 

CONTACT 
PUBLICATIONS
College
Teaching  
SOC 2742: Social Class & Social Inequality

Notre Dame De Namur University 

 

Undergraduate course exploring the structural, interpersonal and psychological dimensions of systemic inequality in the United States with a focus on social class inequality. (1 semester)

 

 

HBSE 334: Racism in the United States: Implications for Social Work Practice

Smith College 

 

​Graduate course that explored the implications of socio-historical and structural theories of racism in conjunction with strategies for social work practice. Students also examined their own experiences of both privilege and oppression as they relate to culturally responsive clinical approaches. (7 semesters) 

 

 

EDUC 237: Foundations of Multicultural Education 

​Springfield College 

 

​Undergraduate course introducing students to Social Justice Education theory in teaching practice with an emphasis on the structural, interpersonal and psychological dimension of racism, classism, sexism and heterosexism. (2 semesters) 

EDUC 210: Social Diversity in Education 

University of Massachusetts, Amherst

 

​Undergraduate course focused on issue of social identity, social and cultural diversity and social oppression. Students explored the manifestations and interconnections of racism, sexism, classism, ethno-religious oppression, heterosexism and ableism. (8 semesters) 

MGMT 481: Leadership of the Civil Rights Movement  

Texas A&M University 

 

Undergraduate course including nine weeks of classroom analysis of the leadership of the Civil Rights Movement and a one-week trip to major civil rights sights in Selma, Montgomery and Birmingham Alabama, Atlanta Georgia, Memphis Tennessee, and Little Rock Arkansas. (3 semesters) 

A White Educator Looks Back on her Racial Socialization. National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS), Independent Ideas. 

 

Making a Place for Race in Schools Independent School Magazine 

 

More than Men in White Sheets: Teaching about Racism as Systemic Inequality.  Equity & Excellence in Education. 

 

Juggling the Contradictions: An Exploration of White College Students' Understanding of Racial Inequality. Doctoral 

Dissertation, University of Massachusetts. 

Talking about Race, Facilitation Guide.  Iris Films.  

High School Teaching
Inequality in the United States 

The Ethel Walker School 

 

Elective course which introduced 11th and 12th grade students to the sociological, interpersonal, and psychological dimensions of systemic oppression in the United States with a focus on exploring racism, classism, sexism, heterosexism and religious oppression. (6 years) 

Social Justice Seminar   

The Ethel Walker School  

 

Required seminar for all ninth-graders that allowed students to explore their own cultural identity and think about the many ways identity impacts their perspective and interactions with others. Course also provided a foundational overview of oppression theory. (7 years) 

South Africa & The United States: Historical Parallels  

The Ethel Walker School 

 

​Highly selective, one-semester course which examined apartheid and the anti-apartheid movement through classes, workshops, independent study, and a two-week educational journey to Johannesburg and Cape Town South Africa. (2 semesters)

Learning Immersion Courses   

The Ethel Walker School 

Intensive elective courses that met each day for one week for a total of 22 hours. Open to grades 9-12.   

 

“Women in the Legislative Process.”

“Interracial Dialogue: Let’s Talk about Race”

“Understanding Critical Service Learning.”

“The New Jim Crow: Racism in the U.S. Criminal Justice System.”  

Institute
Facilitation   
The Equity & Inclusion Institute 

The Nueva School 

 

Four-day intensive teacher training designed to provide K-12 teachers with foundational knowledge to implement a social justice educational model in their classrooms and pedagogy. Open to all K-12 educators. Co-founder and co-facilitator.  (3 Institutes and counting. Learn more about the next Institute here).

 

 

The Leadershape Institute 

LeaderShape  

 

National one-week residential leadership program for college students. Co-facilitated six days of interactive curriculum for group of 40-70 college students and trained and supervised four to five additional faculty members. Wrote "inclusive Leadership" curriculum which was delivered to over 6,000 college students annually from 2001 to 2017, and wrote "Equitable Leadership" curriculum launched in 2018.

The Diversity Education Institute 

Texas A&M University 

 

Intensive five-day diversity training program for university professionals from across the United States. Served as lead facilitator and also coordinated all aspects of the institute including program content, training manual, resource material, and logistical arrangements.

(3 Institutes) 

 

 

 
Director of Equity and Social Justice  

The Ethel Walker School  

 

Developed and coordinated all aspects of Social Justice Education including leadership of school-wide educational programming, faculty development, teaching three academic courses, and advising student affinity groups and clubs (Black and Latina Student Union, Gender and Sexuality Alliance, Muslim Student Association and Social Justice Peer Educators). 

Coordinator of Diversity Education  

Texas A&M University 

 

Founding coordinator of newly established Office of Diversity Education. Led all efforts including student and staff peer diversity education programs, budget administration, and supervision of two full-time staff, and two graduate interns.

Resident Director: Semester at Sea   

University of Pittsburg  

 

Served as Resident Director and Student Union Coordinator on a “floating university” housing 450 college students from a variety of U.S. college campuses. The 100-day educational voyage, which teaches cross-cultural relations and global understanding, visited Japan, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, India, Kenya, South Africa, Brazil and

Venezuela.

Adminstrative
Roles   

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