Join us for our fall series of free Cultural Enrichment & Professional Development Skills Training webinars.

We've partnered with community experts to provide workshops in critical areas to promote cultural awareness, inclusive practices, collaboration and resilience in the workplace and leadership development; activities that will ensure the development of power and human skills to thrive successfully in the workplace.

Fall 2023 Workshop Series

Developing Cross-Cultural Intelligence

Saturday, September 16 from 10:30am - 12:00pm

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Collaboration and Resilience in the Workplace

Saturday, October 14 from 10:30am - 12:00pm

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Inclusive Workplace Practices

Thursday, September 28 from 5:30pm - 7pm

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Leadership Development

Thursday, October 26 from 5:30pm - 7pm

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Developing Cross-Cultural Intelligence

This educational workshop begins a 4-part series designed to ensure the development of power and human skills required to thrive in any workplace. In this kick-off event we will have open, relatable, and culturally inclusive conversation as we seek to define culture, risks related to culture, real-world examples of cross-cultural conflict, and best practices for communicating through cross-cultural dialogue. 

This workshop will take place on Saturday, September 16 from 10:30am - 12:00pm.

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Presented in partnership with Burnea Lester.

Burnea Lester Currently serves as the Director of Communication and Community Relations at SITE Improvement Association, where she engages with key construction industry and community leaders to improve the effectiveness of workforce development programs, develop new minority contracting and workforce participation opportunities, and assist contractors with Diversity and Inclusion efforts while also strengthening SITE’s internal and external communications outreach. She currently sits on the Board of Directors at the Construction Forum and Nurses for newborns. She currently co-chairs a committee that is focused on retention and recruitment efforts that will engage more diversity in the workforce.

She has over 16 years of experience creating and maintaining strategic partnerships and building meaningful relationships. She Co-Founded the Art of Adaption with her husband, a consulting firm that trains and advises organizations on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Company Culture, and Psychological Safety. During her time with UMSL’s Community Innovation and Action Center, she was the Learning and Evaluation Manager. In this role, she helped non-profits and organizations build capacity through collaboration and partnership portfolios. She has worked with organizations such as Urban Housing, Legal Services of Eastern Missouri’s Neighborhood Vacancy Project, Turn The Page STL, and many more. 

In her previous role as Regional Director of Chamberlain University St. Louis – Las Vegas – Phoenix Campuses, she championed community engagement initiatives to assist in the projected workforce shortages in the Healthcare trades, primarily nursing. She created the National Strategic Diversity Action Plan for the National Department of Enrollment Management and partnered with local high schools to help alleviate barriers for unrepresented prospective students. 

She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Broadcast Journalism from Northwest Missouri State University, a Master of Arts degree in Media Communication and Media Literacy from Webster University, and a Master of Science degree in Education

She is a native of St. Louis, Mo, and spends her free time chasing her 5yr and 6yr old sons, Dane and Layland, around the world. She has been married to Daniel F. Lester, her best friend, for 13 years. She has a passion for building meaningful relationships, creating impactful partnerships, and finding solutions.

Inclusive Workplace Practices

Diverse teams are more productive, innovative, and engaged. This interactive workshop will discuss the importance of building community, celebrating and embracing differences, creating inclusive spaces where everyone can be their authentic selves, and will identify best practices to support inclusion for all in the workplace.

This workshop will take place on Thursday, September 28 from 5:30pm - 7pm.

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Presented in partnership with Myron Burr.

Myron joined the University of Missouri-St. Louis in the Spring of 2022 and serves as the coordinator for diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. Prior to joining the ODEI staff, Myron worked at Lindenwood University as an instructional designer and chair of their DEI Task Force. While at Lindenwood, Myron was instrumental in developing and leading the university’s first Day of Dialogue – an annual campus-wide event where students, faculty, and staff take the opportunity to examine their individual and institutional role in building a shared community. He is passionate about dialogue and creating space for everyone to participate in the conversation around equity and inclusion. Myron is excited to continue the work and collaborate with others across campus to make UMSL a more equitable and inclusive place to learn, live, and work.

Collaboration and Resilience in the Workplace

Have trouble finding motivation when the going gets tough? This interactive workshop will discuss the difficulties associated with developing resilience, identify strategies for conquering personal adversity, highlight the role mental health plays in enhancing resiliency, and provide best practices for contributing to collective resilience in the workplace.

This workshop will take place on Saturday, October 14 from 10:30am - 12:00pm.

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Presented in partnership with Mara Woody.

Dr. Mara Woody has been a higher education innovator for nearly 20 years. She is currently the Senior Manager, Strategic Partnerships at Riipen, an experiential learning platform, whose mission is to eliminate underemployment. In this role, Mara builds consortium programs that support postsecondary institutions in transforming to experiential learning campus cultures connected to the larger workforce development ecosystem. Before that, she served as a Senior Partnerships Director with the global Wadhwani Foundation.

Previously, she served as Assistant Commissioner for Postsecondary Policy with the Missouri Department of Higher Education and Workforce Development, where she led initiatives through partnership and collaboration to connect higher education and workforce development to serve adult learners in the state, and changed the culture to focus on educational innovation, strategic projects, and change management. While in this role, Mara founded the Missouri Adult Learner Network, bringing together higher education institutions, workforce development, and community organizations to focus efforts on serving adult learners more successfully, and hosted the first Student Journey Mapping workshop in the state for higher education institutions.

Mara has served higher education through public and private higher education institutions in several capacities: international credentialing, Academic Affairs, LEAN process improvement, and updating technological advances so offices became fully digital.

Dr. Woody has an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy from Vanderbilt University, a Master of Science in Criminal Justice from Columbia College, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Criminal Justice. During the summer of 2012, she was a fellow in the Peabody College Institute of Higher Education Management at Vanderbilt University.

Leadership Development

This empowering workshop wraps up the 4-part series with a dynamic conversation on the art of influencing and elevating others to their greatest potential.

This workshop will take place on Thursday, October 26 from 5:30pm - 7pm.

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Presented in partnership with Clara McCalla.

Clara McCalla is a Sr. Corporate Trainer and Motivational Speaker who creates and delivers content-rich programs. Her leadership, training style, and professional knowledge has given her a well-deserved reputation in a multitude of workshops and training seminars that she has facilitated that stretch beyond the transfer of information. Her workshops offer a dynamic and highly interactive experience for the participants.

As a trainer who has enormous experience in the corporate setting, Clara is exceptionally skilled at identifying the right resources for specific projects. She is an instructional designer and, without a doubt, a force behind the development and design of customized training projects. Her “How To” seminars have profoundly affected a wide variety of people, and her comfortable and engaging presentation style makes it easy to assimilate information to make it user-friendly at once.

Contact Us

We look forward to meeting you!

Learners who participate in the Cultural Enrichment & Professional Development Skills Training will experience activities and dynamic discussions that will ensure the development of power and human skills to thrive successfully in the workplace.

For more information, contact

Kyle Lackey
(314) 516-4478

or enter your contact information and we will be happy answer questions or reach out with further materials.