Diversity Educator Uses Humor, Not Guilt

Thursday, September 26, 2013 - 08:15

George Carlin? Wanda Sykes? Margaret Cho? No, it’s Jessica Pettitt, who describes herself as “the diversity educator your family warned you about.”

Pettitt’s October 3 address, “Be the Change You Want to Be,” will use humor to break down barriers that get in the way of social change. She’ll speak at 7 pm in Gamble Auditorium.

In addition to laughter, she promises “no drum circles, guilty tears, or finger pointing” and says participants will leave with concrete action steps to make real social change happen in their lives.

“Jessica Pettitt’s training style builds social justice awareness and capacity in a manner that is fun and practical,” said Dean of Students Rene Davis, whose office is sponsoring the event. “Jessica breaks down many stereotypes about social justice and speaks to the activist in all of us. I am confident that participants will leave feeling, in equal parts, entertained and able to be an agent of change.”

Pettitt incorporates her extensive experience in student affairs, facilitating tough conversations, and stand-up comedy in these highly interactive presentations. Her mission is to inspire change, dismantle oppression, and help people reclaim their responsibility to make change.

One participant said of her presentation, "You have no idea the impact you've made on me. You've…showed me one person's words can shake a room full of hearts."