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Belonging, Learning, and Exploring New Directions (BLEND) is a Reflective Practice Teaching Circle that operates under umbrella of both the Center for Teaching Excellence and Frederick Douglass Institute for Intercultural Research.

Blend Project meetingPart of BLEND’s involvement on campus includes holding workshops throughout the semester on a variation of topics. Upcoming BLEND workshops include:

Spring 2016 Semester


Meet your Mentor at the Oak Grove
Complements of APSCUF and BLEND (For 2015–16 BLEND protégés only)


Ways to Achieve Better Work-Life Balance
Date, Time and Room TBA

Learning how to balance competing needs and desires is always a challenge, especially for busy working professionals. This session will provide first- and second-year faculty with access to some tried and tested time-management strategies. 


Communicating Effectively with your Departmental Chair
Date, Time and Room TBA

Faculty who communicate effectively with their chairs can learn how to obtain resources needed for their teaching and research, determine whether they are making satisfactory progress towards tenure and promotion, and negotiate various aspects of faculty life which included instructional load, advising load, and service opportunities. Past chairs who facilitate this session will describe how first and second year faculty can initiate and manage these conversations. 

Contact Person: Crystal Machado, BLEND chair,

BLEND’s Mission

BLEND seeks to provide a personal and professional safe and supportive environment where women and faculty of color can receive guidance, support, and constructive feedback that honors their differences and builds on their strengths. This group is open to all, regardless of race and ethnicity.

BLEND Mentors

BLEND is currently seeking experienced, exceptional colleagues from across the university who are willing to mentor newly hired women faculty and faculty of color. We are looking for people with solid institutional knowledge and who are able to:

  • Offer guidance and direction to protégés regarding professional issues
  • Direct protégés to institutional resources, experts, and source materials
  • Encourage and acknowledge protégés’ ideas and work
  • Challenge the protégé to expand their abilities
  • Provide timely, clear, and comprehensive feedback to protégés’ questions
  • Respect, value and promote protégés’ contributions to the IUP community

Mentors will work with one protégé during the academic year.

If you or someone you know would make a good BLEND mentor, please e-mail BLEND chair Crystal Machado ( with the name and e-mail address of the person you have in mind. Self-nominations are welcome.

  • Frederick Douglass Institute
  • Stright Hall, Room 108
    210 South Tenth Street
    Indiana, PA 15705
  • Phone: 724-357-3299
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • 1:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.