Event Calendar // A Groundwater Approach: Understanding Racial Inequity

A Groundwater Approach: Understanding Racial Inequity

9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Online - Virtual Event

This event is sold out. A Zoom link and corresponding instructions have been emailed to registered attendees on Wednesday, September 15th at 3pm from sender Anna Richards. If you have questions or issues logging in, please contact Anna Richards at [email protected].
If you were unable to secure a seat for the Groundwater event on September 17th but are interested in attending a future Groundwater workshop, please email Brynn Popa at
[email protected].

Before addressing racial inequity or acts of discrimination, it is critical to understand what institutional racism looks like and the devastating impact it wields on our nation’s people, economy, and social institutions. This training is an interactive virtual presentation from the Racial Equity Institute on the nature and impact of structural racism and what it looks like across institutions. The Groundwater Approach will examine narratives and use compelling research data to illustrate the systemic nature of racism and the fallacy of typical explanations like poverty, education, social class, individual behavior, or cultural attributes that often get associated with particular racial groups.  Join us Friday, September 17 for this virtual half-day training session. 

The Fish , the Lake, and the Groundwater
If you have a lake in front of your house and one fish is floating belly-up dead, it makes sense to analyze the fish. What is wrong with it? Imagine the fish is one student failing in the education system. We’d ask: Did it study hard enough? Is it getting the support it needs at home?
But if you come out to that same lake and half the fish are floating belly-up dead, what should you do? This time you’ve got to analyze the lake. Imagine the lake is the education system and half the students are failing. This time we’d ask: Might the system itself be causing such consistent, unacceptable outcomes for students? If so, how?
Now… picture five lakes around your house, and in each and every lake half the fish are floating belly-up dead! What is it time to do? We say it’s time to analyze the groundwater. How did the water in all these lakes end up with the same contamination? On the surface the lakes don’t appear to be connected, but it’s possible — even likely — that they are. In fact, over 95% of the freshwater on the planet is not above ground where we can see it; it is below the surface in the groundwater. This time we can imagine half the kids in a given region are failing in the education system, half the kids suffer from ill health, half are performing poorly in the criminal justice system, half are struggling in and out of the child welfare system, and it’s often the same kids in each system!

Please join us as we convene leaders in Greater Akron to establish a shared understanding of the impact of systemic racism so that we may move forward to advance inclusive economic growth, together.
Space is limited. Should the event reach capacity, please sign up to be on the waitlist. If space becomes available, we will reach out to you to get you registered. We will also leverage this waitlist to assess the additional interest from the community relative to hosting another sessions later this year.

Presenting Sponsors:


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Premier Sponsors:

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Supporting Sponsors:

ASW Global

Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations

Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. 

Cleveland Clinic Akron General


Dominion Energy

PNC Bank

Stark State College

The University of Akron 

United Way of Summit & Medina 

Westfield Bank

Click here to register