The Diversity and Speaker Series at STCC on Oct. 5 featured Dr. Raul Fernandez, a Senior Lecturer and former Associate Dean for Equity, Diversity & Inclusion at Boston University’s Wheelock College of Education & Human Development.

Fernandez presented an engaging discussion for STCC students, faculty and staff that raised questions about inequities in education. For example, he noted that public schools are as segregated today as they were 50 years ago. He spoke about the legacy of slavery.

A first-generation college student, Fernandez co-developed and taught the Boston University course Identity, Inclusion & Social Action, which helps students to examine systems of oppression and identify opportunities to work toward social justice.

Fernandez, who is an appointee to the Racial Imbalance Advisory Council of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education,  was recently named a Public Impact Scholar by the Initiative on Cities.

In the last few years alone, he researched and wrote a piece that helped topple a monument to white supremacy, created a film and conversation series that engaged thousands of participants in challenging dialogues on social justice issues, and trained thousands more in developing equitable policies and practices at institutions throughout the country and beyond. Fernandez also served as a member of Brookline Select Board – the first Latinx person elected to that position. During his time on the Board, he founded Brookline’s Small Business Development Committee, a special committee to support public housing residents, a Racial Equity Advancement Fund, and a task force focused on reimagining public safety.