North Central News

Honors Salon Series dives deeper into theme of social justice

Kara Kots

Mar 11, 2022

The Honors Salon Series, hosted by North Central College’s Honors Program, is back for the spring 2022 semester and is examining new topics under the theme of social justice, a continuation of fall semester. A new lineup of speakers will present new issues, allowing the campus community to look at social justice from different perspectives.

“In previous semesters, we’ve relied on subjects in the humanities like English, history and political science to inform our ideas of social justice,” student organizer Nick Cheop ’22 explained. “This semester, we’re branching out further and looking at issues through lenses from other fields such as psychology and occupational therapy.”

Kicking off the spring semester’s series was Karl Kelley, professor of psychology, where he discussed perceptions of justice in the workplace and specifically how restorative justice can create fair solutions to problems. David Cordero, assistant professor of art and design, presented on how creatives can expand their understanding and practice of inclusive design.

The latest salon took place on Tuesday, March 8 in Stevenson Hall. Meegan Lambert, assistant professor of occupational therapy, discussed racism in healthcare to help attendees develop a deeper understanding of how racism, discrimination, bias and microaggressions can manifest in healthcare settings.

At each salon, campus community members uncover a new area where social justice and change can leave a powerful impact. While each salon comes to an end, the learning does not. “Every salon we’ve hosted leaves students with ‘next steps’ and additional readings to look into so they’re able to continue learning about the topics,” explained Cheop. After four consecutive semesters, North Central’s Honors Program has hosted nearly 20 salons on the themes of racial and social justice, encouraging the campus community to learn more about a wide array of topics and initiate positive change on and off campus.

While the original founders of the series are set to graduate this May, they are determined to ensure it continues on campus. “This series did not exist three years ago, and in that short amount of time, I think we have taught students so much,” said Cheop. “I know future honors students will find a way to bring the campus community together and continue to grow social justice advocates at North Central.”

To conclude the series this semester, Nick Boaz, associate professor of chemistry and director of undergraduate research and prestigious fellowships, will lead a conversation about the future direction of the Honors Program and its popular series. All honors students are welcome to attend and share what they would like to see in the future for the program.

To learn more about upcoming salons, visit the Honors Salon Series web page.

For more information about the series this semester, contact Nick Cheop at