Ron Scott Jr. on combatting stereotypes and implicit bias

West Liberty University has been able to have Ron Scott, Jr. put on a virtual presentation this year. The presentation included information on stereotypes and implicit bias. Scott is the Cultural Diversity and Community Outreach Director at Wheeling, YMCA. The Campus and Community Diverse Community was hopeful of an outcome of participating in important information discussed within our campus community on diversity. The virtual presentation was able to be rescheduled to Wednesday, April 14.

Scott’s presentation was focused on implicit bias and information referring to these stereotypes are present (with some degree) with everyone. “Throughout his presentation, Ron utilized various personal examples in a way that allowed the audience to realize that these generalizations are more than just associated with skin tone/color.” says Chris McPherson. McPherson also gave me some examples that Scott used during his presentation. “In one example, Ron shared that he has a relative that, due to a medical condition, has to exclusively use a wheelchair and Ron did not fully realize the impacts of this daily reality to this person’s life.” McPherson was also a member of the presentation that gave place on April 14. “Ron closed the presentation by displaying a series of pictures that he had previously shared with various people/groups, requesting feedback on words that would be associated with these pictures. The feedback was both positive and negative, again showing the power that preconceptions have with our minds and how our personal experiences impact how we perceive different people/situations.” says McPherson.

The goal of the West Liberty University Campus and Community Diversity Committee is to engage both the students and the community in activities that promote a variety of understanding areas of diversity. Campus & Community Diverse Team page on WLU’s website says,, “West Liberty University strives to create an inclusive, respectful, intellectually challenging climate that embraces individual difference in race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, age, spirituality, socio-economic status, disability, veteran status, experiences, opinions, and ideas.” The website also includes a form that anyone can fill out for questions and concerns for the committee. There are also resources of ways you can help such as Black Lives Matter foundations and Safety While Protesting. If there is any interest on a topic, the Committee is open to setting up Zoom meetings to discuss comments on the diversity issues.

For any questions regarding the presentation you can reach out to Chris McPherson at [email protected] or the writer of the article Katlyn Roberts, at [email protected].