Diverse Perspectives Seminar Series (DPSS)


The Diversity Perspectives Seminar Series is a trainee-hosted event that contributes to the ongoing, university-wide discussion on diversity and inclusion in academia. Each speaker visit will also provide opportunities for marginalized trainees to network, share personal experiences, and discuss strategies for navigating the increasingly-competitive job market.

A key objective is to provide cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural interactions between diverse trainees to enable postdoctoral scholars,graduate students, and undergraduates to share, learn about, and improve the experiences of currently marginalized members of the Stanford community.

DPSS flyer

An in-person event featuring Professor Sherilynn Black (Duke University) on April 21st at 10AM PST in Clark Auditorium.

Join us in person to celebrate diversity and excellence in research as we bring together scholars from all career stages to discuss efforts to promote equity and inclusion within academia.Dr. Black is the Associate Vice Provost for Faculty Advancement at Duke, where she provides leadership for faculty advancement and leads initiatives to increase diversity among the faculty. Alongside this work, Dr. Black’s social neuroscience research reveals the effectiveness of interventions designed to promote diversity in academia. Through a combination of neuroscience and statistical modeling, Dr. Black develops effective strategies and interventions required to broaden participation in the basic and biomedical sciences.

Please RSVP for the event here.

Jointly hosted by SURPAS and BioAIMS



DPSS planning team



DPSS advisors



Stanford VPGE Diversity Innovation Fund

Stanford Humanities & Sciences


2021 Event Keynote Speaker: Dr. Raychelle Burks, American University

Dr. Raychelle Burks earned her BS from Northwestern Iowa University, MSc from Nebraska Wesleyan University, and PhD from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln. After working in a crime lab, Dr. Burks returned to academia, teaching, and forensic science research. Her research team is focused on the development of colorimetric and luminescent sensing systems for the detection of samples of forensic interest. Beyond the bench, Dr. Burks is a popular science communicator appearing regularly on TV, radio, podcasts, and print outlets. Most recently, she was a series regular in the Smithsonian Channel show “The Curious Life and Death Of…” and writes a science-meets-true crime column called “Trace Analysis” for Chemistry World. In 2020, she was awarded the American Chemical Society’s Grady – Stack Award for Interpreting Chemistry for the Public. Central to Dr. Burks’ research, teaching, and service is the central tenet that equitable, diverse, and inclusive spaces and practices both respect people and produce scientific outcomes of greater integrity. She is a member of several local, national, and international committees, task forces, and projects focused on social justice and STEM.

2019 Inaugural Event Keynote Speaker: Dr. Michael Penn

Dr. Michael Penn earned his B.S. from Morehouse College and his M.D.-Ph.D. at UCSF. Michael left UCSF to work at Genentech in Marketing and Business Development roles for the next 9 years and was then recruited to become a Vice President at the Gladstone Institutes, focusing on diversity, mentoring, and strategy; then served as CEO of the Gladstone Foundation. He is also a co-author of Finding Your North and co-founder of the non-profit, Building Diversity in Science.  In 2017, Michael moved on to tackle some independent ventures, including founding Health Equity Ventures–an emerging venture fund, consulting for UCSF and advising digital health startups. His sole focus is on enabling the development of talent, technologies, and companies that enable wellbeing for all, especially vulnerable populations.