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Diversity and Inclusion


Challenging Gender Expectations: Understanding the Intersections of Gender, Race, Sexuality, Ability and Colonialism at K-State
Wildcat Chamber, 2:00-2:40pm (Session Period 1)

Students, faculty, and staff at K-state interact with a variety of gendered expectations, assumptions, and constraints every day. While some individuals may never have noticed or questioned these aspects of campus life and interpersonal interactions, for others, navigating them presents a constant and complex daily challenge. This presentation will include a lecture and an activity to help attendees explore how processes like racialization, settler colonialism, and designations of disability intersect with gender in physical spaces, roles, stereotypes, and perceptions within the K-state community. Our goal is to not only enhance participants’ understanding of the complexities of these expectations, but also facilitate their ability to challenge the harmful ways these aspects of identity affect everyone. The presentation is open to all members of the campus community.


Harlan Weaver

Dr. Harlan Weaver
Associate Professor, Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies Department

Harlan Weaver is a scholar of trans*gender, queer, science & technology, animal, critical race, and ethnic studies, he is currently completing a book titled Bad Dog (Washington University Press) on what he terms the “interspecies intersectionalities” at work in contemporary discourses regarding pit bull-type dogs and animal shelter and rescue practices. He has published articles in Catalyst: Feminism, Theory, Technoscience; GLQ; Trans*gender Studies Quarterly; Somatechnics; Angelaki; and Emotion, Space and Society. His research has been supported by grants and fellowships from the National Science Foundation, The Animals & Society Institute, Uppsala University, and Kansas State University.  

Rachel Levitt

Dr. Rachel Levitt
Assistant Professor, Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies Department

Dr. Rachel Levitt serves as co-chair of the LGBTQ* Faculty Staff Alliance, the Transgender Taskforce, and they chair the Queer Studies committee that oversees KSU's Queer Studies Minor. Off campus, Dr. Levitt serves on the board of the Flint Hills Human Rights Project and is an organizer with experience in both direct-action coalitions and legislative initiatives.

Sam Sharpe

Sam Sharpe
PhD Candidate and Graduate Teaching Assistant, Division of Biology

Sam Sharpe received a BA in Biology from Carleton College, and their current research focuses on local adaptation to environmental stress in a wild grass species. Sam is also a member of the executive board of Gender Collective, a student organization that provides community, activism, and education on issues surrounding trans and gender non-conforming students on campus. They are a passionate advocate for the importance of scientific literacy, science communication, and the capacity of biology to empower self-understanding of diverse identities. As a graduate student, they have given presentations at local and national conferences on plant evolutionary ecology, increasing inclusion in STEM fields, and understanding biological variation in sex and gender.