BAIL Yourself Out

Does Where you Come from Determine Where you're Going

August 04, 2023 Kandice Whitaker Season 1 Episode 7
BAIL Yourself Out
Does Where you Come from Determine Where you're Going
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

This week the Bail Yourself Out Podcast host Kandice Whitaker is welcomed by the ultra-talented Dr. Elvin Ramos, a dean at De Anza College, a certified social scientist currently working on his second doctorate. On this week's podcast, DEI training - once considered progressive yet innocuous, has suddenly become a hot potato in the political landscape, thanks to Florida Governor Ron Desantis and others like him. However, Kandice and Dr. Ramos analyze the actualities of DEI policy in practice, the good and bad, and the overall importance of inclusionary workforces and educational institutions.

Is DEI the new affirmative action? Is it more effective at HBCUs than PWIs and corporate America? If so, why? Are certain institutions checking diversity boxes to "appear" as problem solvers? Kandice and Dr. Ramos dig deep, exploring DEI at lengths to bring the greatest understanding to those questions.

In addition to all things DEI, Kandice and DR. Ramos also discuss how our origin stories impact our present circumstances and the choices we make in the present. Giving back to the community, outgrowing family and friends, and creating new support systems are all on the agenda. Finally, the hosts finish with a discussion on the non-profit Global Tassels,  its core mission, and the special meaning it holds for them. 

So the Bail Yourself Out lounge is open, drinks, knowledge, and a good time is virtually free, so enjoy the pod. 

Keep up with Kandice Whitaker and the BAIL Yourself Out Community Online

Kandice Whitaker  0:00  
Welcome to the bail yourself out Happy Hour Podcast where each week we'll help you navigate the corporate jungle. Here's your host Kandice Whitaker is happy hour.

I'm your coworker Kandice with the K pull up a chair and your favorite drink for the bail yourself out. Happy Hour is about to start. By fam Welcome to the bail yourself out Happy Hour podcast. I'm your host Candace with a K. I'm so glad that you decided to stop by Florida, Florida, Florida, Florida, y'all they added again, I'm sure you've heard by now that their governor Rick DeSantis. He is defunding dei programs and hopes that they will quote wither on the vine. Well, the new school that's out of Sarasota, Florida, they're taking the initiative being first congratulations. They've closed their dei office and luckily their employees didn't lose their job. They were reassigned to new jobs but people mad they are mad and they're dressed up like a handmade sale. And they are out there protesting but we're going to talk about that later on with my guests. My guest today. I'm super excited is Dr. Elvin Ramos. He's earned his doctorate in history from St. John's University. He has a master's from a Delphi University and a bachelor's degree in political science. Dr. Ramos is currently enrolled in his second doctoral program in sustainability education at Prescott College. He currently serves as the Dean of Social Sciences and Humanities at DeAnza College in Cupertino, California. Shout out to iPhone people, you know where Cupertino is. But before California, Dr. Ramos served as an assistant Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and faculty at the University of DC right here in your nation's capital. He's a trained social scientist. His field of research is in the study of world poverty in history, which encourages his drive and special interest in finding ways to eradicate world poverty. He's also the founder of a not for profit called Global tassels, whose mission is to eradicate poverty through education. And so after the break, we're going to talk to Dr. Elvin Ramos about his mission to save the world through education. We'll be back

Welcome to the bail yourself out Happy Hour podcast. That bail acronym is used to outline the steps to implementing resilience in your life be believed you can win a accept change as part of the journey I inventory strengths and l learn from what's happened. Together we'll unpack the bail framework in action. Now back to the show.

Hey, hey everybody. Welcome to the bail yourself out podcast. You got Kandice with the K and today my co host guest is Dr. Elvin Ramos. I am so super happy he's here. So I want to dive right in Dr. Ramos Shirt Day I sent this article that was in the AP Associated Press news about the diversity and inclusion office at New College down in Sarasota, Florida. I'm sure you heard Rick DeSantis passed this bill saying that dei is a distraction and bureaucracy right. And the bureaucracy in this college included four people, four people were the bureaucracy that was slowing the college down. And their intention was to make sure that we had equity and inclusion training and programming available at this college. I'm literally confused by this other than Rick DeSantis is aspiration to run for president and 2024. I don't even understand why we're talking about this. Like why are we bothering these people? They're not bothering anybody. Why is this a thing? That's my perspective. But I'm so curious to hear about what you want to say about this?

Dr. Elvin Ramos  4:00  
Sure. I you know, it's funny, because right now, in terms of higher education, I feel personally and sometimes most of my colleagues here in the West Coast, like all eyes on Florida, right? What's happening in Florida politically, but also just the educational ecosystem that's happening there. And it's and glad you shared this article with me because I have a couple of thoughts. One is that I thought about after reading this article, just sort of my experience, you know, in my education in New York, to Delphi University, and I started there and at that time, you know, 15 years ago, 20 years ago, the institution was a predominantly white institution, right? And then I think about my journey in terms of where I've started to work about in College of New York, which you know, it's very much centered to social justice and social change with this mission, and then working at CUNY where most of the students we serves our students of color are amongst in New York City, right demographic area, and then moving into University of District of Columbia and HBCU in Washington, DC. And then now here at the Anza College in California and an RPC campus, which most of our students here at the answer, predominantly are Asian American and Pacific Islanders. So I sort of reflected back to that Canvas, because in my mind, I've always feel like I've always been involved in in this di work, right. But it's not like an everyday thing that comes. Or at least, it's not something I think about, it's just something that I do. Does that make sense? Right, but now this past couple of years, right, the terminology the i, d, I A, and sometimes it's the I AP right, be purple belongings has now formulated and has become really a hot topic or a hot segment or pillars of higher ed institution, right. And it's funny to me, because when you're thinking about PW eyes, and for instance, HBCU, the there's two things that I would say, there's two things that are different, right one, I would say that HBCU, or any institution that serve a very high number of students of color, I think we tend to really focus our mission more on social justice and equity. Right, and we talk about it a lot more, because we're sort of used of fighting for this social aspects of our lives, right. And I think that when we are talking about it in an institution that has a lot more students of color, I think we also celebrate it. And it's funny, because now predominantly white institutions are definitely exploring, you could see and it's relevant, and it's it is, it is real right now that they are building up their Office of Equity. They're starting their efforts, but sometimes it doesn't land well for them. Right. And I think, right now there are institution that a lot of these efforts are becoming more of a maybe, you know, just this platform of knowing that they're addressing something that's important at the moment, but really, having a DEI office or having to have an effort of any DEI Kandice, you know, it takes a while to really build that culture within the institution. Right. And I am very much aware that there are institutions that are just starting that or identifying what that means, right, in regards to the work that they're doing. But, you know, I respect that. But at the same time, I asked myself, Why now? Why just now, you know, we have been really fighting for change for so long, especially in the system of higher education in America, which is predominantly structured by the European system. Right? And, yeah, and I think that there are a lot of things that we're doing now, but we're not there yet. I don't think that we're there yet. And to be honest, I really think that, you know, a lot of the students now coming in into higher education, are paying attention to this kind of stuff and paying attention and which institutions are really taking it seriously, which institution are just somewhat adding it into into their playbook, you know, at a very late in the game, per se. So I think right now, you know, you're gonna see a lot of questioning, is the DI work in an institution, really relevant work? Is that impactful work? Or is it just part of sort of the seasonal thing that they had to talk about or address? Because that's what we're doing? Or at least what's happening in the nation? So I don't know if I answered your question. Yeah, go ahead. No,

Kandice Whitaker  8:53  
What you're saying is so important, because the last part of what you said is really key. If I'm a person, that is my majority, right, I'm in the majority group, what difference does dei make to me? None. And that's a place of privilege, where you can absolutely see it as disposable. So I can see from that perspective, while you're like, Oh, why do we need this? And you're right, I don't know, where the term dei came from, as a person who greatly benefits from that, right? Sure. Yeah. I don't know where it came from. But all of a sudden, recently, you see all of these people, I do dei training, I go to corporations, I go to higher education, I do dei training. And as the person who has the training and development company, that's like the number one question I get, do you do dei training? And I'm like, No, I do software training. I don't do any of that HR kind of related stuff. But I know a lot of organizations are making money and state and a lot of people are out here making a whole lot of money and dei which isn't bad. Right? Shout out to the people who were effective dei trainer As but if in 2023, where we're still having firsts, first black, first Latina, first Asian American, first, openly gay for, like, we have worked to do. So there's that. But then also, it kind of frustrates me that we see the DEI initiatives growing from the places where it's needed historically black colleges and places of that sort. Because really, to affect change societally. Let's speak to the elephant in the room. It's not HBCUs that are determining policy. It's the Harvard grads. It's the Yale grads. It's the Princeton folks. I love y'all Clark Atlanta. I love y'all Spelman, but real rap. So like until we, as a society, see these initiatives that are very important, coming from places that we've already identified as leaders in those fields. I think we're going to be talking about this for a long time, because the culture is the hardest thing to change. Those are the cultures trendsetters, in my

Dr. Elvin Ramos  11:07  
Well, I see your point. But I would argue also that the HBCUs, right, Clark, Atlanta, maybe Howard or others that are her really been, you know, moving the needle, and they're all community are in their own state in terms of diversity, equity inclusion, I think, the HBCU, or any institution, right, that has predominantly have a student of color, I think those are the institution that never got credit, right, for any of this di work. However, I have a feeling or at least I believe that those are the institutions that set the model, right, or the framework that now right, bigger Ivy League institution, such as Stanford, such as Harvard, Yale, right, are carrying or formulated or structured this framework, or this effort, or this, you know, community work that we have been doing and this institution into something such as an artist of the eye, right. So it's sort of like, it's very interesting, because I feel like hold terminology of the eye has really been sort of like, Oh, we're going to put a stamp on this. And this is going to be the thing now. But I always feel like we've always been doing it. I mean, it's always been, in my mind, diversity has always been like one pillar of human resources, right? That's always been what they do. And they just kind of got one pillar just became really sort of became really more important that it morphed into now its own entity that a lot of institution, a lot of companies agencies are struggling to, to build that up, because they never thought of investing on an office of the AI away from human resources, right? And what does that even mean? I mean, I am participating in a lot of the AI Institute and know a lot of the eye on chiefs that have recently got that title and that position in different institutions, but they're struggling, they're struggling to sustain in terms of how to one ask for resources from their institution to build their opposites. Second, they don't have the capacity are, you know, of staff, and third are struggling because a lot of the institutions are really doubling down on saying, hey, look, you're part of that you're going to be doing all of it, right. And the argument is that this work is not an individual work. This has to be like if an institution or any company, private or public, decides to work on the AI work, and really try to embed this in their mission. I really feel that everybody has a stake on that work. You know, it's not 100% agree. Yeah. Yeah.

Kandice Whitaker  13:49  
Like, we all need to be part of it. But I like to be a realist in my life. And I tend to be very cynical about these kinds of things. Honestly, I believe the work of dei is necessary. I wouldn't be very clear on that. But I believe from my perspective, dei is simply affirmative action that they turned into a bogey word rebranded, okay, we can't say affirmative action anymore, because we don't want to make legislative moves to ensure that marginalized people have equal opportunity, because we don't like that. So we got smart Okay. HBCUs because we used to you're moving the bar. Okay, cool. We're gonna call it dei now, but it's really the same jump and not that has jumped but you know, I'm being casual in my language here. Yeah, it's the same thing but now they've gotten hip to wait a minute dei is really kind of doing the same thing that affirmative action was doing were seeking to level the playing field and at the end of the day, that's not what they want to do. So it doesn't matter what you call it. Affirmative Action Dei, even call it canvas. They don't want to do that period. Point blank. Be honest about it. Call a thing a thing.

Dr. Elvin Ramos  14:59  
Yeah. I also think that, you know, we doubled down on the AI, mainly because at some point during, you know, the previous administration that we didn't know we I mean, we were very burnable. Right? How do you say that all this work that we have been doing in terms of diversity, equity inclusion, we might not have call it that, right, in early 2020, even in 2010. But we've all worked on that anybody who has worked in higher institution have, again, contributed to that effort. And I think that because of the last administration, because of the Berner ability that we've had, because we first we didn't have any confidence, we didn't have any confidence in work policy was going to go second, when we didn't have any sort of idea, right? Where even our democratic society, right, it's going to protect who we are as an individual. I think that we we wanted to make sure that, you know, maybe that is the case that we wanted to amplify right, and put some sort of structure or terminology as the as the I can't think of any good thing right now in terms of my head, but put that in, in a in a sense that it makes sense to everybody that, look, we got to protect the work, and we need to highlight the work, and we need to make sure that this work continues. And therefore it became a trend, right. And people say, Oh, it's a sort of trend, or is it something? No, it's not, it's not something that it just happened. It's been something that we have been working on, for so long people of color in higher ed institution, right? Because not no, definitely. Not all right. But feel that it's a way you know, the development of it, or the emergence of different di offices or structures. It's really for us, right? Those people who had invested time, and and an effort to, to protect that to protect our rights in our workplace. Now, don't get me wrong. I am very, very aware that there are companies that started the AI work, and I questioned them, because I'm like, you have to they

Kandice Whitaker  17:13  
got sued, after they got sued. That's why that's exactly why don't do the EI Training. Don't bring me here after you've been sued. The black girl to train you know, you tried it? No, yeah. Well, let's,

Dr. Elvin Ramos  17:27  
let's talk about that. It's really, you know, di work. As I said, you know, a few minutes ago, it's not just a work of one person, or, or somebody who is a person of color in an institution or in a company, right? It is everybody's work. I am very, very fearless. When I am in a space, and when the I work is pointed to a person of color and asset, they are the person to save and find solution for every single problem. Know,

Kandice Whitaker  17:57  
The diversity savior. You are the diversity.

Dr. Elvin Ramos  18:05  
Just like how you don't want to do DEI work. There are days that you kind of, you know, I questioned myself. And I'm like, No, this is not, you know, because at the end of the day, that practice is actually is the opposite right of equity. And so or that perspective is the opposite equity. So anyway, just to go back to your question, I think this is going to be something that, you know, we have to pay attention to. And I think that it's an interesting phenomenon, but at the very serious one, because at the end of the day, the AI five years from now, gee, I 10 years from now, I wonder what that looks like, you know, for institutions and even private companies, public institution, my hope is

Kandice Whitaker  18:47  
That we will get to the point in my lifetime in our lifetime where we won't need to separate it because we will be there. Yeah, we don't have to remind people of that. And by the way, shout out to everybody and Sarasota Florida, who dressed up like the folks from a handmaidens tale get dressed up like a hand right? Yeah, went outside the new school. I am loving the drama. If y'all haven't seen The Handmaid's Tale on Hulu, check it out, even though I think they went two seasons too long. But we'll talk about that a different day. But that's

Dr. Elvin Ramos  19:22  
Something that I love. You know, as a social scientist, I love community organizing our love when we have to mobilize and make our own statement no matter what it is whether we dress up, we have signs or we put some song together, whatever it is I through drama, you know, hey, it's drama, but it is drama, of influence. Right. And I think that there is you know, there's something to say when we are very strategic and tactical and when we bring community together to influence a policy right especially if it's going to deteriorate who we are As an individual and also the rights that we have, and and, again, Florida is, is going through it right now. You know,

Kandice Whitaker  20:08  
Let's not forget that a lot of states look to Florida as a trendsetter. And I've said this before, Florida is not always the best influential. And I said what I said, you hear something crazy happened in United States, I don't even have to read the rest of it. It's in one of three places, Florida, Ohio, and Texas, not necessarily in that order. And this has been a really, really interesting conversation. I'm going to put a paper clip in it right here for just a second. We're gonna take a break. And then when we come back, we're going to talk about if where you came from effects where you're going, we'll be back.

You ready? For more? Keep up with Kandice with the K on social media. Now back to the show.

All right, y'all. We are back. The bail yourself out podcast. And I have this our special guest today in the happy hour lounge. Dr. L. Ramos, we've had a really we've had an interesting conversation about an article that we read in the Associated Press taken away Dei. But now the reason that's so important is because Dr. Ramos is a researcher and his background, and I let him talk to you himself about what he does. But it's basically about how poverty affects you throughout your life. Right. So my first question to you from the happy hour crew, that's us. How does where you come from affect where you're going? And this is all related to our conversation before about dei and leveling that playing field.

Dr. Elvin Ramos  21:39  
Yeah, you know, I always think about it about like, you know, that saying, like, you always have to remember where you came from. Right. And that can mean different things to different people. My honest answer to that, is that when I first came to the United States, I wanted to forget every single thing about the Philippines, right? Because it was a very, for me as a young child, a very traumatic experience, and the trauma is because of the hardship and, you know, the not the opportunity of nothing, at least in my opinion. You know, if we didn't leave the Philippines,

Kandice Whitaker  22:21  
You know, outside of the US, we don't have core like that, you know, I have a Caribbean mother and poor in Jamaica, is different from poor in the US. It's the devil Oh,

Dr. Elvin Ramos  22:31  
My god, yeah, it's a different level. So it's something I feel like, you know, as a child, I was excited to be to go to a new place where I could forget about, you know, the beginning of my childhood, in a sense, because it really was, like I said, environment that was not kind of in terms of how our livelihood was, was, you know, growing. And it was because of poverty, right Canvas. So at the end of the day, as you said, poor in the Philippines is totally different from poor in the United States. Right. So I wanted to forget that. And then, right, I think it all goes back to this whole D I think that I was talking to you about earlier and the involvement of us in social justice and social change. In high school, I started participating in community service and, and that really, you know, in a sense, gave me this opportunity, or I think it was more, maybe the terminologies a turning point, because I felt like all those community service was was serving others, right. And then therefore, I got to understand, right, that I now have a different sort of entity, or entity of somewhat privilege than others, right? Because now I'm the one helping, I'm the one serving, right. So I started doing this community service in high school and in college. And when I was in college, of course, I got involved shout out to organizations and all the members of caliber, right caliber stands for cost to achieve leadership, intelligence, brotherhood excellence and respect, but caliber is like the one of the main organization in my campus at Adelphi University, that did community service and community engagement, in addition to our academic obligations, right. So being I became president of that group, I became really engaged and we did so many different community service candidates that I felt that I wanted to really understand. Right? Why is it that there's still people suffering in in this country right. Again, remember, I left the Philippines right. And I had that trauma, sort of that poverty experience there. And then now I'm growing up in the United States and I'm, I'm trying to understand like, you know, as I get to know the country, this supposed to be a country that has more right but then now as I get engaged in the community, I'm under spending more and more that there are people who are still suffering or still

Kandice Whitaker  25:03  
more relative more, right? Relative? Yeah.

Dr. Elvin Ramos  25:07  
So and at that time, it was really, you know, mind boggling to me. And this has been in my head. So I graduated, I ended up going to St. John's University, and I said, Look, if I'm going to study world history, I wanted to really study poverty. And I did not come back to the Philippines until I believe 2007. Right. And that's

Kandice Whitaker  25:29  
like, how old were you when you came here? Originally,

Dr. Elvin Ramos  25:32  
I was 10. I was like turning 11 or so. Maybe like 2007. I was already like, you know, it's maybe like 15 years already, right? And 14 years, but at the same time, I really felt like when I got back to the Philippines, I felt like, I had this like obligation to kind of like, really learn where it came from. Right. Like, because I came back and I felt Yeah, like, I felt like, I left my cousins, I left my family. But when I got back, I still feel like I never left them. However, I was now interested in why they're still living in the same conditions that they're at, right? So so when I got back, right, I went to the Philippines, I remember 2007 Because my aunt passed away, and we went to her funeral. And I got back and I was positioned myself with my doctoral studies to study poverty. And I wanted to study poverty, you know, in the context of International Development, and because I have an affinity with the Philippines, I want to start in Southeast Asia. And that's what I did. And I, you know, and I came back, and I really think it through, like, why is poverty? Or what is the effect of poverty? Where are we going with our efforts and in global poverty, right, and really aligning myself in the United Nation. And at that time, you know, millennium development goal was, was happening, believe it or not, one of the things that pissed me off during my research in the Philippines is that there was the Philippines at that time, they were developing roads, Canvas, and they were trying to provide access from like the provinces, right, people from the province to the main city in Manila, and quite frankly, while people, local people, right, are happy that they are building roads, etc. Because of non, you know, not being aware of the situation, or maybe they're just not educated about it, right? I'm talking about local Filipinos, who's from my province, then they really didn't understand as I talk to them that as they building roads, do you realize that they're taken away that agriculture or the aquaculture, right, and that's your job, that's your longevity, right there, we're displacing people giving them you know, 10,000 parcels, 20,000 parcels, but those parcels, within a month, they're gone, right? In their mind, that's a lot of money. But if you really don't have any sort of financial literacy, that money is going to go away real quick, right? And that, therefore, you end up with nothing. So this is the kind of things that I feel like I, you know, I wanted to continue to, to explore. And I actually thought that because of my research on that made me closer to our, to the country that I'm from, right, and, and today, fast forward to today. I mean, I've been to the Philippines almost every year because of you know, because of my research and because of my interest and really appreciating the beauty of my country and really appreciating the work of people, you know, to help each other go through hard times.

Kandice Whitaker  28:35  
So you brought up a bunch of interesting points as you were talking about your time away from the Philippines, but also going back to check in on the people that you knew and your story is so familiar. You know, Maya Angelou has a quote, she says people are more the same, then they are different. And what you're saying speaks to experiences that I've had. I didn't grow up in the Philippines. I grew up in Long Island. But I went away to college just like you and I went back home and my cousins were the same. Yeah. It's that same experience of what you're talking about it. It's like, they didn't change things around them were changing. I saw the things differently because I had changed, but those people who had stayed, they didn't change. So I think you answered the question, where you come from can definitely affect where you're going, especially if you don't get an opportunity to get out. Right. Do you think it was your opportunity of leaving that allows you to see the world in a different place? Do you think you would be Dr. Elvin Ramos if you stayed in the Philippines?

Dr. Elvin Ramos  29:41  
No. I think I would have probably 10 kids. I probably would have a family I probably would not be able to come out to my family. I just think that I would you know I think that my life would have been different, you know, LGBTQ are really not pretty much accepted. Go in a society back then right are in the Philippines now, little by little they are, but I just think like, you know, my whole identity would have been different, right and my whole lifestyle would have been different. And I don't think that I would have been able to really do what or have what I have now. And that's why I'm quite humbled and grounded with that today, and therefore I'm trying to do my best to, to get back and also to continue to learn and how I could serve in terms of the betterment of my country. Now, you know, we do that together in so many different ways. But as just even as an individual, right, it hurts me to see that my cousins who I grew up with at my very, very early childhood are continue to want to stay humble, because that's just the values of the Filipinos, but at the same time, I could see their hardship, I could feel their hardship, I could imagine, right? What would be, you know, their dreams that if they were ever came with me, right at the same time to New York, that their life would have been different as well. We talked about this when I go home, and I talk, you know, in the middle of the night, with in with my cousin's about, you know, what do you think your life would be if you would have been, you know, we had the chance, the same way I had a chance to go to, to New York, and it's a very, very deep reflective and emotional conversation, because I feel for them, you know, I

Kandice Whitaker  31:29  
can imagine, yeah, I can imagine, like, I totally can imagine that. And as you're saying that, it makes me kind of sad. And you know, why? Because I grew up 45 minutes outside of New York City, and my cousins who are doing the worse, grew up 45 minutes outside of New York City, and I could never have that conversation with them. like, Yo, you think if you would have went to college things would have been better for you. Like even being able to have that level of community to be able to have those very real conversations. But another thing that you said that was so key, you mentioned your Adele fie community. I think, and we don't talk about this enough, I think as people who are successful and who are like first generation successful, you kind of outgrow the people that you grow up with, and that junk hurts, yeah. And then you have to kind of find, it's almost like you're an orphan. And you have to find your community or communities where you belong, because as a person, we all long for community. And it doesn't matter what it is, right? We all look for a place where we are accepted. We are liked, loved and trusted, and you shouted out your community earlier. And I love that what advice would you give to someone like us who they're trying to do something different? They don't know anybody else who's doing what they're doing, but they feel alone?

Dr. Elvin Ramos  32:51  
Yeah. You know, that's a great question. My advice, I would say, is that one, just be confident enough, right? You can definitely fit in into any groups that you want. And to do that, it might be hard to do that, right. But to do that, I would say that travel locally, even if you can't afford to travel globally, I think traveling really transform you know, one selves, I think that there's so much that you learn so much that your experience and because of that, you could gain the confidence, right? And when you have that confidence, or at least when you start building that confidence, you could feel that no matter where you are, you could fit in, right. But sometimes it's not you it's hard. It doesn't work the first time around. That's what I was gonna say that time, and that's okay. But at the end of the day, you have to find a community that has a purpose, a purpose that is beyond who you are beyond you know, what you do, and I feel, you know, yes. You know, and, and that to me, I felt, quite frankly, Kandice, after I left college, right. I didn't have that community, sort of like, I left that behind all of us graduated and did our own thing. We are all spread all over New York City metropolitan area. Yes, we're in the metro area. But we don't get to meet all the time, right. We don't get to see all the time the same way. We saw each other during college. So it was hard to build that up. Everybody got really busy during their you know, maybe their first full time job out away from college, right or after college.

Kandice Whitaker  34:37  
So be life in right. We all grow now. So we don't have time to hang out.

Dr. Elvin Ramos  34:42  
Exactly. So with the values and things that I've learned from high school and college right and things that I'm experiencing in my research and in my travel, I sort of decided, well, if I can't find my own community at this moment, because I felt like that at one point where I felt like where am I going wanting to fit in. Right? So common? Yes. Why can I build my own community? Right? Why can I start a group on my own? Right? And therefore I did. Right. And this is global tassels.

Kandice Whitaker  35:13  
Yes. Global tassels. Oh, my goodness. And we're almost at the end of the episode I'm going to tell you about global tassels really quick global tassels is a not for profit started by founded by Dr. Ramos that basically is dedicated to eradicating poverty throughout the world by providing children, older children scholarships, so that they can go to college, but also teaches them the importance of giving back doing community service, and then also being a meaningful part of their community. So the hope is that our GT scholars and oh, yeah, I'm on the board of that. So that's,

Dr. Elvin Ramos  35:52  
That's right. I was just gonna say that.

Kandice Whitaker  35:56  
I believe in the mission of global tassels because I believe that if you educate a child, especially a girl child, I am I'm I'm proud you barbaric. If you educate a girl child, you educate a generation. And you know, if this sounds like something that you're interested in, check out their website, global tassels, they have a Pay Pal there. He didn't tell me to do that. But send them some very important global tassels, that org. That's right, send him some money, help us do the work of helping educate children all over the world. But one of the things and he didn't ask me to do this commercial, I'm just saying that was that was a moment it felt right. It felt right. There, right there. One of the things that you stress in global tassels is community community community. And I didn't really understand that until right now. And I think I already know why you do that now. But I didn't understand that before. It's a full circle.

Dr. Elvin Ramos  36:51  
Right? Yeah, it's that value. I, in a sense, as a founder, right, as I shared with you, at one point, I am trying, I was trying to find my community that is purposeful, that is meaningful, right? And, yes, New York is so large in so many contexts, but it's hard to find yourself, right, as I said earlier, fitting sometimes in this large, big city, right. But if you create a community, and you work hard to create that community, of course, your your values and your sort of Mo, right, the way you operate is to protect that community to grow that community, and to vet that community, right? If you don't fit in, you ain't gonna be there for long. You, if you feel like you have the same passion, and you are understanding, and you're flexible, and you are open to different, you know, people with different walks of lives, you know, what you have opportunity, right to really flourish and to really enjoy this community, because this community is we've been a group for for almost a decade, Canvas, right. And you've seen, there's some people there that's been there for the very beginning. And there's some new individuals there, you know, so it's a growing community, and it's a community that is, again, that is purposeful, it's a community that helps others and, you know, yes, there's work that we do in building and contributing to the operation of the organization. But I feel like at the end of the day, we could be proud of sort of the service that we do, right, it's a community that is geared to service. And that's, you know, that's really what I as a founder, I feel like internally, right, I don't say it out loud, or it's not even, it's not even in my job description that says, protect the community, you know. So, but it's, it's, it's just, I feel like it's a important personal obligation, right, because I am the one who sort of put the purpose and the meaning of this community and this organization that of course, you nurture it, and you cultivate it. And therefore I feel responsible to, to provide some sort of inspiration and empowerment to others who join the community, to continue to grow it and to protect it.

Kandice Whitaker  39:18  
Absolutely love that. I think that could be like the slogan of GT going forward. I was thinking that as you were saying, you know, my idea, since I was creating, I was like, you know, really what GT does is it protects the community, but it also provides provision. So you have three P's

Dr. Elvin Ramos  39:39  
Right, and your slogan, our slogan, if I just say to you, leading change together, that's also our hashtag leading change together, right? What does that mean and how do you how do you lead change right together and that three words really, if you think about it, it is wrapped around and and the very Risk pillars and definition of community.

Kandice Whitaker  40:02  
That's right. And how do you lead change together by purpose protecting and providing providing? I know you have a hard stop right here. So much for your time. Dr. Elder Ramos. It has been amazing having you and

Dr. Elvin Ramos  40:17  
Yeah, this is great. I'm coming back when I write the GT book. Okay.

Kandice Whitaker  40:23  
Thank you so much. All right. Yeah. Beside everybody. Wasn't that a great interview, hold up before you grab your hat and head out, make your way to and join the candidates with a que Whitaker's Facebook group. That's where you can find our free Happy Hour community, luxuriating and chatting. Thank you for listening. And if you enjoyed the show, please leave a review. That's how we keep the lights on. If you're on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, feel free to shoot me a message and say Hey, girl, hey, I'm Kandice with the K Whitaker and I would love to hear from you. And with that, I love you. And I mean, you know why? Because there are people in the world who hate for no reason I choose to love for no reason. I believe that's the great Martin Luther King Jr. said pain is too great a burden to bear and I choose to love, peace ya'll be great.

Dr. Elvin Ramos
DEI A Distraction? Ron DeSantis and DEI
Living DEI
"Check the box" DEI training?
Is DEI the New Affirmative Action
DEI Work is Everyone's Work
The Past's Influence on the Present
Studying Poverty
Going Home Again
Communal Acceptance
Building New Community
Global Tassels
Growing and Providing for Community