Tag Archives: University Press Diversity Fellowship

Meet the 2016-2017 Mellon University Press Diversity Fellow: Niccole Leilanionapae‘āina Coggins

Niccole Coggins staff news photoOn June 1, 2016, University of Washington Press welcomed our first Mellon University Press Diversity Fellow, Niccole Leilanionapae‘āina Coggins, who joins us from the Department of History at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). Niccole’s research interests focus on Hawaiian history as well as identity and mixed race youth. Niccole is currently a PhD candidate working, under the direction of Dr. Paul Spickard. on her dissertation titled “‘I Wish They Would Leave Those Negro Soldiers Alone’:  Native Hawaiian and Japanese American Perceptions and Interactions with Blacks in World War II Hawai’i,” which focuses on how the military changed the identity of Hawaiian society during the territorial period.

Niccole’s work with underrepresented communities includes participation in a local hula hālau, and student life programs at Carleton College, Macalester College, and UCSB. She characterizes her scholarly research as profoundly personal, given her mixed race identity as both Black and Native Hawaiian.

With a BA in American studies, an MA in religion and society, and as a PhD candidate in history, with special emphasis on Pacific Islander studies and Native American studies, Niccole’s academic interests intersect with a number of areas of our lists here at the University of Washington Press.

Please welcome Niccole to the Press!

Read more about the Mellon University Press Diversity Fellowship Program from UW Press editor in chief and principal investigator Larin McLaughlin // Read the Mellon University Press Diversity Fellowship Program press release

March 2016 News, Reviews, and Events

News

UW Press remembers Leroy (Lee) Soper, longtime member of the advisory board, who passed away on Tuesday, February 2, on the eve of his ninety-second birthday.

The four presses involved in the Mellon University Press Diversity Fellowship Program are now all actively recruiting for positions (see joint announcement). If you know of excellent candidates, please send them our way (applications due March 15)! Read a piece by UW Press editor in chief and Principal Investigator Larin McLaughlin at the UW Press blog and an interview with the MIT Press editorial director Gita Manaktala at the MIT Press blog.

UW Press is also accepting applications for the 2016-17 Soden-Trueblood Graduate Publishing Fellow position (deadline: March 18). Read a guest post from 2015-16 Soden-Trueblood Graduate Publishing Fellow Becky Ramsey Leporati on her fellowship experience.

The Association for Asian Studies has announced the winners of this year’s AAS book prizes. Xiaofei Tian is winner of the Hanan Translation Prize for World of a Tiny Insect. Author Wai-yee Li (one of the translators of Zuo Tradition / Zuozhuan and a coauthor of The Letter to Ren An) has won the Levenson Prize (Pre-1900 China) for her latest monograph (published by Harvard Asia Center). Congratulations to our authors and all involved!

P. Dee Boersma, author of Penguins, is a finalist for the prestigious Indianapolis Prize for conservation, sponsored by the Indianapolis Zoological Society (UW Today; Daily). Boersma and the five other finalists have been awarded $10,000 each and the winner will receive $250,000 and a medal. Listen to a recent interview with Boersma about iGalapagos on KUOW’s “The Record,” as well as in National Geographic and Smithsonian.com.

Reviews and Interviews

BehindCovers-BlackWomen-00Black Women in Sequence author Deborah Elizabeth Whaley has Q&As at Blavity (picked up at the A.V. Club) and Little Village, and speaks with Comic Culture.

Continue reading

From the Desk of Larin McLaughlin: The Mellon University Press Diversity Fellowship Program

In this guest post, UW Press editor in chief and Principal Investigator Larin McLaughlin writes about how the Mellon University Press Diversity Fellowship Program (application deadline: March 15, 2016) came to be:

In the past six months, two children’s books have incited controversy with their rosy depictions of enslaved African Americans making desserts for their owners. On the heels of the well-tweeted #WeNeedDiverseBooks campaign, which brought national attention to the lack of diversity in children’s book publishing, objections to the books flew across social media platforms. On my own Facebook feed, scholar and cultural critic Rebecca Wanzo nailed a key question that pervades these controversies: “who was in the room?” Publishing houses produce all-too-frequent situations where critical decisions are made without the benefit of diverse perspectives, and who is in the room certainly matters.

In the case of A Birthday Cake for George Washington, author Ramin Ganeshram describes how her concerns about racial representation went unheeded in the collaboration between author, illustrator, and publisher. Overall, those best positioned to bring critical and diverse perspectives to publishing decisions are still significantly underrepresented in the industry: recent surveys such as the 2015 Publishers Weekly Salary Survey and the Diversity Baseline Survey demonstrate important differences in demographics between publishing professionals in the U.S. and the U.S. population more generally. Continue reading

$682,000 Mellon grant to help academic publishers increase workforce diversity

SEATTLE, WA—A four-year, $682,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation awarded to the University of Washington will help four university presses and the Association of American University Presses (AAUP) create a pipeline program to diversify academic publishing by offering apprenticeships in acquisitions departments.

The collaborative project involves the University of Washington Press, the MIT Press, Duke University Press, the University of Georgia Press, and the AAUP. The University Press Diversity Fellowship Program will create cohorts of four fellows per year for three years. The program will recruit fellows who have significant personal experience and engagement with diverse communities and a demonstrated ability to bring the understandings gleaned from such engagement to the daily work of academic publishing.

“The University Press Diversity Fellowship Program builds on the University of Washington’s longstanding commitment to inclusion and social justice,” said Gerald Baldasty, UW interim provost and executive vice president. “The program aligns with UW president Ana Mari Cauce’s mission to support and sustain diversity at the university and the communities it serves through her Race and Equity Initiative.”

Fellows will have the opportunity to connect with one another and engage with industry colleagues at two AAUP annual meetings. “AAUP congratulates the University of Washington Press, along with the other AAUP member presses participating in the Diversity Fellowship Program,” said Peter Berkery, AAUP executive director. “Because diversity is a core AAUP value, we are eager to welcome Diversity Fellows to our future annual meetings. I know other member presses will be interested in this program, and I look forward to helping our community build on its success.”

The University Press Diversity Fellowship Program is the first cross-press initiative of its kind in the United States to address the marked lack of diversity that characterizes the publishing industry. Although university presses have long fostered and supported diversity-related fields such as Native and Indigenous studies; African American studies; women’s, gender, and sexuality studies; and Asian American studies, the fellowship program represents a significant investment in creating career development opportunities and a supportive environment for diversity publishing.

Principal investigator and UW Press editor in chief Larin McLaughlin said, “From editorial strategy and list development priorities to growing revenue from emerging markets to the finer points of culturally sensitive copyediting and cover design, enhancing diversity within the workforce of university press publishing has the potential to improve the relevance and efficacy of publishers for an increasingly diverse audience of scholars, students, authors, and readers.”

Another desired outcome of the fellowship program is to develop best-practice strategies and tactics for fostering diversity at all levels of the profession. Further, this collaboration will focus attention on the centrality of diversity in all its forms to the future of global academic discourse and, it is hoped, will inspire related efforts to prioritize diversity more broadly in the publishing industry.

“One of the prime joys of our job as editors in the university press world is that we publish books that truly make a difference to academic and broader communities,” said Mick Gusinde-Duffy, editor in chief of the University of Georgia Press. “We’re taking positive steps toward a more diverse cohort of publishing professionals that takes transformative publishing to a whole new level.”

Gita Manaktala, editorial director of the MIT Press, commented, “We expect to learn a lot from our three fellows and hope that each will find lasting and rewarding opportunities in university press publishing. If so, the major beneficiary of this program will be the university press community itself, along with the wider communities of scholars, students, and general readers we serve.”

The program will offer each fellow opportunities for one-on-one mentoring as well as monthly cross-press video conferences led by staff at partner presses, covering a range of topics designed to supplement the hands-on training.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to participate in this much-needed diversity fellowship program,” said Courtney Berger, senior editor and editorial department manager of Duke University Press. “This fellowship will help Duke University Press to foster a more diverse staff that better reflects the wide-ranging perspectives and backgrounds that inform the Press’s publications, our authors, and our readership.”

Outreach and recruitment by the program’s selection committee will begin this month, with the first cohort of Diversity Fellows starting their apprenticeships in June 2016.

“The University of Washington is extremely proud that our press is leading this transformative initiative,” said David L. Eaton, dean of the UW graduate school. “And we are truly grateful for Mellon’s vital partnership and support.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:

Larin McLaughlin, Editor in Chief of University of Washington Press, at 206-221-4995 or lmclaugh [at] uw.edu.

Gita Manaktala, Editorial Director of The MIT Press, at manak [at] mit.edu.

Courtney Berger, Senior Editor & Editorial Department Manager of Duke University Press, at cberger [at] dukeupress.edu.

Mick Gusinde-Duffy, Assistant Director for Acquisitions and Editor-in-Chief of The University of Georgia Press, at mickg [at] uga.edu.