VOICES for Social Justice Alliance

Voices of Innovative Compassionate Experts in Society

Brought to you by the Constellations Center for Equity in Computing at Georgia Tech, Voices of Innovative Compassionate Experts in Society (VOICES) features raw, authentic conversations from experts on social justice issues facing American society. These conversations aim to shine a brighter spotlight on the negligence of lifting our poor communities, and the lack of equitable access to upward mobility and quality education and healthcare. While as a center we primarily focus on computer science education, it is clear in this time of crisis that computer science education is only part of the solution. 

VOICES aims to give experts, educators, healthcare workers, members of the BIPOC community and more a platform to discuss issues plaguing American society. These conversations are available on our YouTube channel and across podcasting platforms including Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Deezer, Stitcher, and Google Podcasts.

To learn more about the inspiration for and motivation behind VOICES, read Constellations Director of Innovation and Educational Innovation and VOICES host, Lien Diaz's blog post, Bracing for Impact.

"Could it be possible that the outcomes of these pandemics are capable of launching us into a technological and futuristic way of changing society and the way we educate our youth? Now more than ever, we are faced with having to solve societal problems with greater challenges. I have high hopes the CS education community will come together to start innovating solutions, but we still have a lot to learn." - Lien Diaz, host of VOICES

Meet the Host

lien diaz

Bringing an essential core foundation of equity in access and opportunity to computer science education as Director   of Educational Innovation and Leadership, Lien Diaz helps establish Constellations as a leader in expanding   computer science education through an equitable and comprehensive approach in national/international, state, and   local education systems. Lien’s work is motivated by challenging the status quo   to change perspectives of CS   education and make transparent the educational issues that must be addressed to obtain equity in school systems   across the country.

 Meet Lien

Latest VOICES Episodes

Stephanie Rodriguez Discusses the Challenges Women and Minorities Face in STEM Careers

To kick off the series, Constellations director of innovation and educational leadership Lien Diaz spoke with Stephanie Rodriguez, vice president of policy and engagement at AnitaB.org. Together, the women explored the current landscape of careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) for women and minorities, what challenges these groups are facing when it comes to upward mobility and income inequality, and what AnitaB.org is doing to help close these gaps. With a background in immunology and policy, Rodriguez brought a unique perspective when discussing the impact of Covid-19 on the tech workforce, education systems, and the 2020 election.

Available on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Deezer | Stitcher | YouTube

How Can We Better Support Latinx Communities in CS Education? A Conversation with Art Lopez

Art Lopez is a 33-year veteran teacher at Sweetwater High School in San Diego, Calif. and passionate advocate for computer science education in Latinx communities. In episode two of VOICES, Lopez discusses how to support Latinx students in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields and how the Covid-19 pandemic has impacted schools, especially schools that are regularly underfunded and whose populations are predominantly Black or people of color.

Available on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Deezer | Stitcher | YouTube

Covid-19’s Impact on Schools and Implicit Bias with Jean Ryoo, Joanna Goode, & Jane Margolis

In episode three of VOICES, Lien Diaz talks with Jean RyooJoanna Goode, and Jane Margolis on what access really means, the impact of Covid-19 on the education system, and a decade after its publishing, reflects on Margolis and Goode’s groundbreaking book, Stuck in the Shallow End.

Available on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Deezer | Stitcher | YouTube

Teaching in a Time of Crisis in Chicago and Atlanta Public Schools

In episode four of VOICES for Social Justice, we spoke with Charity Freeman and Lashawne Myles, teachers from Chicago Public Schools and Atlanta Public Schools about how their districts have been handling Covid-19 and its effects on their classrooms, their experiences as Black and female educators, redlining, and what is keeping them motivated throughout these chaotic times.

Available on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Deezer | Stitcher | YouTube

How Do Algorithms Impact Behavior Over Time? Plus, Data Privacy, Social Media Addiction and the Election

Today we’re joined by two experts to discuss how bias and fairness in algorithms slowly impact human behavior over time. From how our social media feeds can become dangerous echo-chambers to what ads we see as we scroll through Instagram, we address how this can affect our buying habits, mental health, political views, and more. Our experts also give advice on how to protect you and your family’s data.

Available on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Deezer | Stitcher | YouTube

Where Does American Education Stand Right Now?

Do racism and classism still exist in U.S. classrooms? How has Covid-19 exposed the depths of inequities in our education system? How can professional development be better designed to help teachers succeed? We’re joined by leading education experts, Gail Chapman and Dale Reed to discuss the current state of American education and what future improvements need to be made.

Available on Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Deezer | Stitcher | YouTube

What does VOICES look like?

Good question! Elevating voices will look different depending on the topic and guest, but you can expect them to come in one of three forms to start off with:

Become a VOICE

If you are interested in contributing to the VOICES effort, please contact us at gtconstellations@gatech.edu