JANUARY 2021 DEI SPOTLIGHT
Name: Demetrius Ford
Preferred Pronoun: He/Him/His
Affiliation/Title: Undergraduate Student
Degree(s): Bachelor of Science in Architecture, Candidate 2022
Home Country: United States
Language(s) Spoken: English
Gender Identity: Male
Racial Identity: Black
Favorite Food: Reese's Puffs cereal
Favorite book and why: Currently, Structural Inequality: Black Architects in the United States by Victoria Kaplan. I love this book because of its relatable perspective to me as a hopeful black architect and designer. There is so much history in this book that is not taught in mainstream classroom discourse that has not only widened my perspective on the institutional challenges that black architects face in the field, but also the systemic barriers that minority designers have to overcome in order to be recognized equitably in their careers.
Favorite thing to do when not at TC: I love to go on hikes, paint and meet new people wherever I go. I believe one of the most valuable things in life is to be able to learn how others live, the difficulties they had to overcome and connect with them over their lived experiences.
DEI Contribution/Highlight: Over the past few years I have led and encouraged mentorship programs that have first-hand impacts on high-school and college age students such as the IGR Summer Youth Dialogue program and the Taubman College’s Peer Success Partnership program. I have also recently served as a thought partner for Taubman’s upcoming Jones-Russell Ambassadors program which engages with a diverse body of prospective and admitted students at Taubman to provide them with opportunities to learn about the programs and resources at our college.
Why is diversity, equity, and inclusion important to you? Without DEI efforts, there would be little to no educational representation of minority groups, whose generational struggle has not only been ignored but unjustly capitalized on to build the wealth and success of today’s society. Systems of oppression and disenfranchisement have plagued almost every aspect of society, and I refuse to sit by and continue to watch the destruction of communities and families when I have the opportunity and privilege to make a difference.