Breaking Barriers is a social-justice focused, departmental initiative that touches on all six core values of Housing and Residence Life: Diversity and Inclusion, Teamwork, Community, Personal Growth, Safety and Security, and Innovation.

Breaking Barriers promotes social justice through the deconstruction of the barriers that prevent the interaction and growth of people, cultures, regions, neighborhoods, and campuses. Each residence hall planned a social justice program during the month of February that touches on Immigration, Race Relations, Economic Justice, Race Relations and Women, and Gender and Sexuality (LGBTQIA).

We invite the UNCG campus and community to attend the Breaking Barriers signature programs listed below!


2020 Breaking Barriers Signature Programs


Feb. 20, 5:30 p.m., Shaw Tillman-Smart Room

Can You Access the American Dream? Your Pathway to Citizenship

This will be an interactive presentation to engage students about immigration. The purpose of this program is to give a different perspective on students who come from other countries, as well as for current students to see how complex it is to become an American Citizen.


Feb. 24, 7 p.m., Reynolds Classroom

Greensboro is Burning

Drag culture has spread across the globe due, in large part, to the success of the television series “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” but where did it all begin? Join us as we examine the historical and cultural impact of Queer and Trans People of Color through an engaging presentation followed by a showing of the cult classic “Paris is Burning,” the infamous documentary that highlights the legendary ballroom culture of New York City in the 80s and 90s where Queer People of Color paved the way for so many aspects of American culture today.


Feb. 26, 6 p.m., McCormick Conf. Rm. 109

Black Magic: An Open Mic Night to Celebrate Black
History and Culture

Bring your talents and bring your friends as we celebrate Black Culture and History! Music, spoken word, poetry, monologues, dance, and story-telling are all welcome! These can be original pieces or recreating/sharing pieces you enjoy. Stage fright? Come and enjoy some refreshments and just watch and support! Interested in participating? Sign up here by Monday, February 17, at 9 a.m., for priority sign ups. There will also be an opportunity to sign up at the event but priority sign ups will be considered first!


Feb. 27, 7:30 p.m., Jefferson Suites Lobby

Cafe USA: Come Advocate For Everyone

Residents will participate in a gallery walk that will inform them on different injustices throughout America (i.e. racial, gender inequalities, access to education, body discrimination, mental health stigma, sexuality, gentrification). Residents will then be given the opportunity to create art work of their choice (poetry, drawings, dance) based on the injustices they just learned about. The space will then turn into a coffee shop. At a certain point the group will participate in an open discussion. The open discussion will be a chance for the residents to debrief on the gallery walk and their time creating their art work. The residents will be invited to share their pieces of art.


Mar. 11, 7:30 p.m., Grogan Parlor & Classroom

Gender Reveal Party: Advocating For Our LBGTQ Friends

This program is a forum about LBGTQ employment discrimination issues surrounding a pending supreme court case as well as everyday difficulties members of the community face. This program will allow students to gain knowledge about the upcoming supreme court case, learn how to advocate for the LBGTQ community, and engage with current social justice issues.


Mar. 17, 6 p.m., Haywood Clubhouse

A Day in the Life of Access

Within this program, participants will be given identity cards in which they hold a particular identity/ persona that they need to follow throughout the activity. Each participant will navigate through our numerous “checkpoints” that ultimately challenge their given identity in relation to access. Throughout the whole program, everything that they interact with will be more “simulation-based” and focuses on exposing them to different scenarios that people with different identities face on a day-to-day basis.


Mar. 18, 7 p.m., Weil-Winfield Residence Hall

Walk In Their Shoes: Is your Access Granted?

In the current political conversations, it is important to understand the experiences that some are having in America. This program will have four stations that address the barriers and obstacles immigrants face in the journey to become an American citizen. The last station will allow participants to reflect on their experiences and use one word to describe their feelings. With faculty and community partner assistance, participants will get a glimpse of how laws and obstacles affect those in the Greensboro and North Carolina community.


More Community Programs


Feb. 7, 7 p.m., Phillips-Hawkins

History Through Your Lens

In the program we will be introducing the idea of making your own history in Phillips-Hawkins while looking back at important times in African-American History. Students will be able to crate inspiration boards and have pictures taken of them that will be hung up in the hallways.


Feb. 12, 5:45 p.m., Moore-Strong “Pit”

Are You _______ Enough?: Understanding & Advocating for Your Identities

Participants will participate in a painting activity that will lead into a facilitated dialogue with residents about various identities attendees hold.


Feb. 19, 7 p.m., Cone Hall Ground Floor

Beyond Wakanda: Exploring Afrofuturism

Afrofuturism reimagines the world through a black lens. It aims to dismantle the cultural assimilation of western colonization and create a view of modern and/or fictional/science fictional exploration of black culture, art, literature, and technology.


Feb. 19, 7 p.m., Reynolds Classroom

Gender Reveal Party

Staff members responsible will be hosting a “Gender Reveal Party” where students will be able to come and talk about their gender and identities. Students will do so by decorating cupcakes. Each icing color and sprinkle color will have a different gender or identity attached. Students will choose what resonates with how they like to portray themselves and share with the group if comfortable.


Feb. 19, 7:30 p.m., Spring Garden Apartments – 1st Floor Classroom

Access America: An Interactive Dialogue on Citizenship

This program will allow residents the chance to explore the barriers to citizenship faced by millions of immigrants in the United States each year. This program will consist of 3 activities and catered foods. Residents will have the opportunity to learn what millions of people face living in America and the importance of access.


Feb. 20, 7 p.m., Reynolds Classroom

Measuring Your Agency Through Privilege Bingo


Feb. 24, 5 p.m., Shaw Classroom 142

Can You Access the American Dream?: The Pathway to Inclusivity

During the month of February, an array of social justice/diversity questions will be displayed in each of the seven buildings for residents to share their thoughts. This will allow residents to display their ideas and reflect on the answers of their peers. To sum up the month, residents will be able to enjoy a night of watching and discussing the film “Freedom Writers”. We will tie in the questions that were displayed over the month and discuss social justice/diversity topics.


Feb. 24, 8 p.m., Mary Foust Parlor

Micro Mindfulness: Inclusivity in Action

Micro Mindfulness: Inclusion in Action will serve to teach students how to utilize inclusivity in their day to day behavior. It will teach not just the understanding of inclusive behavior and thinking, but practicing such behavior and thinking in a way that makes it second nature. From identity to class divide, Micro Mindfulness aims to develop within students the practice of every day inclusivity in action.


Mar. 10, 7:30 p.m., Grogan Parlor

Action Against Clout: Blocking Oppression Out

What role does social media play in your life? Have you ever been affected by an Influencer’s clout or social status? Has it ever made you feel less than or not good enough? Join us in the Parlor of Grogan Residence Hall as we engage in a conversation and activity around the impact social media Influencers have on our perceptions of ourselves.


Mar. 16, 6 p.m., Tower Village

If the Shoe Fits/What’s On Your Plate

“If the Shoe Fits” places students in scenarios that allows them to reflect upon the barriers/hardships that their peers may be facing on a daily basis. After imagining themselves in the “shoes” of a person who may face racism, sexism, discrimination, hunger/poverty or privilege within society, they will then reflect upon how they felt in that scenario with others and ways they can approach that situation moving forward. Based on their given scenarios, students will be provided with portions of a meal, a full meal, just dessert or no food item at all to represent the experiences of that specific scenario group. This event will also incorporate a shoe donation drive. (warning: some scenarios may be triggering)


Mar. 25, 6 p.m., North Spencer Classroom

Three Miles

Exposure is a concept frequent in diversity and inclusivity initiatives. Privilege walks are forms of exposure activities, but do they do more harm than good? Exposure is humbling experience to some, but for others it can be a reminder of the opportunities one does not have. “Three Miles” is a audio-documentary covering the story of a program between two schools in the Bronx. One a private school on a hill and the other a public school in one of the country’s poorest congressional districts. The schools are three miles apart. The objective of the school program is for the participants to connect but for the students under the divide, they only see what they do not have. We hear what happens when you get to see the other side and it looks a lot better. We will listen to 30 minutes of the intriguing audio-doc and follow with a discussion on access inequities, exposure, and the purpose of privilege walks.