Pathways for Non-Academic Careers Workshop

Mon, March 22, 2021 10:00 AM at Zoom

In the third in a series of Sociology Graduate Student Professional Development Workshops, this event will explore Pathways for Non-Academic Careers.

Panelists include: 

  • Dr. Stephen Vrla
Stephen is the Curator of Humane Education for the Detroit Zoological Society and oversees the DZS’s Berman Academy for Humane Education, a one-of-a-kind initiative with the mission of “Helping People Help Animals.” In particular, he focuses on developing and implementing programming that strengthens the attitudes, knowledge, and skills people need to coexist with wildlife. Stephen earned a PhD in Sociology and Curriculum, Instruction, and Teacher Education with specializations in Animal Studies and Environmental Science and Policy from Michigan State University. Previously, he worked as a youth leadership program coordinator at a nature center, environmental science teacher at a boarding school, and field instructor at a wilderness therapy program.

  • Dr. Jessica Garcia

    Dr. Garcia supports the Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and Professional Development in the design, implementation, and ongoing sustainability of DEI strategic goals. In addition to overseeing the college’s annual DEI Strategic Plan, Dr. Garcia provides consulting, training, and crisis-management support for the LSA Dean’s Office and departments around emergent DEI-related issues.

    In addition to her work with the University of Michigan, Dr. Garcia is the Founder and CEO of Hummingbird Solutions, LLC, a diversity and inclusion consulting firm. In this role, Garcia offers business and community members the tools and resources to create and sustain inclusive environments for their employees, clients, and constituents.  

    Dr. Garcia has consulted with and trained thousands of participants across a wide range of industries in the public and private sectors providing interactive, customized services on topics such as Introductory DEI; Self-Awareness; Building Inclusive Workspaces; Inclusive Hiring Practices; Implicit Bias; Microaggressions; Bystander Intervention; Inclusive Leadership; Allyship; and, Inclusive Teaching. Outside of the University of Michigan, her clients include Michigan Department of Technology, Management, and Budget; Michigan Department of Treasury; East Lansing High School; Ele’s Place; Families In Transition; Great Lakes Planetarium Association; Michigan Association of Chamber Professionals; Michigan Dental Association; Michigan League for Public Policy; Mid-Michigan Chartered Property Casualty Underwriter (CPCU) Chapter Society; and, Midwest Collaborative for Library Services.

    Prior to joining the University of Michigan, Dr. Garcia held a joint position in the Department of Sociology and the Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives at Michigan State University. She received her doctorate in Sociology from Michigan State University in 2008.

  • Dr. Cedric Taylor

    Dr. Cedric Taylor is a Jamaican-born filmmaker and holds the position of Associate Professor of Sociology. His scholarly and creative endeavors focus on racial health disparities, immigrant health, and visual sociology. Dr. Taylor is a public sociologist who produces documentary films to engage the broader community in conversations around racism and social and environmental justice.  He is the writer, director and co-producer of the documentary film Nor Any Drop to Drink: Flint's Water Crisis that has been screened throughout the country and internationally. Cedric has founded Uhuru Consultant Services LLC which offers speaking engagements, facilitation and research & analysis to businesses and non-profits on issues of diversity, equity and inclusion. Cedric is also past-president of the Michigan Sociological Association.