UVM's HESA program is committed to addressing racism and oppression at individual, institutional, and societal levels. We organize our collective efforts through the Anti-Racism Working Group, which meets weekly throughout the summer and periodically throughout the academic year to develop sustaining initiatives for the HESA program.

Below, you will find information about a number of initiatives undertaken to deepen our commitment to anti-racism within the program.

Anti-Racism Affinity Spaces

Anti-racism spaces meet monthly and are open to all HESA students, instructors, staff, and students who are taking HESA courses.

There are three goals for the HESA anti-racism spaces:

  • Build a coalition and sustainable community within HESA committed to anti-racism
  • Provide racial identity solidarity, support, and learning grounded in curricula
  • Transform HESA program, UVM, and broader society through anti-racism commitments

Learn more about the affinity spaces:

BIPOC affinity space

A place for BIPOC students to be in community, to center joy and healing, and to develop solidarity and shared experiences in HESA.

Space for interrogating whiteness

A place for white students to interrogate and process white identity that centers education.

HESA coalition building space

A place for all students to build coalitions for anti-racism and continue the work of the Anti-Racism Working Group.


Every year, we hire HESA student facilitators for anti-racism spaces. BIPOC affinity space facilitators are paid $750 for fall and spring semester, and facilitators of the space for interrogating whiteness are paid $500 for fall and spring semester. All facilitators co-facilitate the HESA coalition building space together.

Participants are invited to join whichever space(s) align with their own racial identity. Multiracial/biracial participants are invited to connect with Jay Garvey for support and community in determining which space(s) to join.

Anti-Racism Instructor Guide

In Summer 2021, the HESA Anti-Racism Working Group was established in an effort to create a more anti-racist classroom experience. The Instructor Guide was created by the Working Group and is one component of a larger and on-going effort to actualize HESA’s mission and core values of social justice. The Instructor Guide is only intended to be a guiding framework for a philosophical, pedagogical, and preparatory approach rooted in anti-racist teaching practices and a co-generative learning process.

Download the Instructor Guide