UCA News

UCA Hosts Bear Biographies Event

Conway Institute of Music

CONWAY — The University of Central Arkansas will host Bear Biographies (formerly The Human Library at UCA) in the McCastlain Ballroom on the UCA campus on Thursday, April 11, 2024, from 12-4 p.m. The drop-in event is free and open to the public.

The inaugural Bear Biographies program is inspired by The Human Library, which UCA has hosted annually since 2019. Bear Biographies will create a safe framework for personal conversations that can help challenge prejudice and contribute to greater human cohesion across social, religious, and ethnic identities.

Individuals volunteering as “human books” are to represent a stigmatized group in the community and share their personal experiences through 20-minute conversations with participants or “readers.” Books can answer questions from readers and help challenge stigmas and stereotypes through dialogue. UCA students, faculty, staff and community members have volunteered to talk about their unique experiences, such as holding public office, experiences with immigration, surviving an eating disorder, and more.

“This experience affords us rich opportunities to learn about the lived experiences of individuals in our community with whom we may have little to no interaction,” said Dr. Angela Webster, Associate Vice President for Institutional Diversity and Inclusion. “We hope the campus and community will seize this chance to feed their curiosity.”

The organizing committee has issued a call for volunteers, both to share their stories and to assist with facilitating the event. Sign up to volunteer here: https://uca.libguides.com/BearBiographies/volunteer

To learn more about the event and to RSVP, visit uca.edu/go/bearbios or contact Amber Wilson at amberc@uca.edu or (501) 450-3236.

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