Diversity Conference

Diversity, Equality, Education

The 10th Annual Indian Hills Diversity Conference was held March 28, 2014 at the Indian Hills Main Campus (Ottumwa).

Note: This event is now over.
However, please read further to find out more about the Diversity Conference and be sure to check back for updates on this annual event.

Redefining Diversity in 2014

Diversity is a term that many people only associate with race and gender; however, it goes far beyond that. The concept of diversity itself represents a broad range of characteristics that can include, but are not limited to: age, race, creed, color, gender, gender identity/expression, sexual orientation, religion, disability, lifestyle, background, intellect, language, political views, and socio–economic status.

The diverse world that we live in today encompasses a wide range of cultures, ethnicities, values, and beliefs — which makes each and every individual unique. Understanding the definition of diversity allows persons to recognize their own individual differences, and thus explore these differences in a positive and enlightening way. By doing this, we can welcome and celebrate these dimensions of diversity that each individual represents. In essence, the concept of diversity is the belief that all forms of differences, no matter what the individual characteristic may be, are valuable.

Registration Options

Full Conference Registration (Lunch included): $40
Student Registration (Lunch included): No Charge

Note: Must present a current Student I.D. to receive the student rate (K–12 and post–secondary students).

Keynote Speakers

Joe TorrilloJoe Torrillo: Buried Alive With the Will to Survive — From Devastation to Inspiration (9:00 a.m.)

Buried alive twice from the collapse of the Twin Towers on September 11, 2001, the smart, funny, and now retired FDNY Lieutenant Joe Torrillo, shares his amazing stories and strong messages that attendees will never forget. Joe travels the world with a quest to make our country the “Re–United States of America,” resurrecting patriotism, trumpeting the men and women of the Armed Services, mentoring adolescents, and inspiring audiences of all sizes to embrace change and never give up on their dreams.

9/11 was a day where the people of the United States came together as one, a day where “black people;” were helping “white people,” and “white people” were helping “black people.” It was a day where the color of one's skin truly didn't matter. Take a look at this video to learn more about Joe, and join us for a remarkable message that you won't want to miss!

Nicole KellyNicole Kelly: Power of One – Changing the Stereotypes of Disability and Beauty Queen (12:45 p.m.)

Miss Iowa 2013 Nicole Kelly was born without her left forearm. As Nicole grew older, she learned to offset the initial stares with an outgoing personality, and she found her passion within a world where she gave people permission to stare — the stage!

Theatre became not only her outlet but her chosen career path. Nicole graduated from the Johnny Carson School of Theatre and Film at the University of Nebraska in May 2012. She spent her summers working in Massachusetts at the Williamstown Theatre Festival and in New Mexico at the Santa Fe Opera.

Nicole's mission is to empower those who feel different to achieve their goals and exceed limitations. It is also her passion to reach out to people of all ages and help them understand their unique ability (not “disability”) to live fully, give completely, and seize every opportunity. She hopes to inspire anyone who feels different in some way and to look past what others may consider limitations to prove that through hard work and dedication, anything is possible! You can get a sneak peek of Nicole and her amazing story by watching this video.

Diversity Conference Schedule

Registration 8:00 a.m. – 8:45 a.m. Hellyer Student Life Center
Welcome and Introduction 8:45 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. Hellyer Student Life Center
Keynote: Joe Torrillo 9:00 a.m. – 10:15 a.m. Hellyer Student Life Center
1st Session 10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Efner Hall, Arts & Sciences Building
Lunch 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Main Dining Hall
Keynote: Nicole Kelly 12:45 p.m. – 1:45 p.m. Hellyer Student Life Center
2nd Session 2:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. Efner Hall, Arts & Sciences Building
3rd Session 3:15 p.m. – 4:15 p.m. Efner Hall, Arts & Sciences Building

View the full Conference Schedule for session topics and the times they were held throughout the day.

Online Conference Registration

Online Registration is now closed.
Attendees may pay at the door, cash and check accepted. No credit/debit cards will be accepted.
Please see registration pricing above.

Scholarship Essay Contest

The Indian Hills Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholarship Essay Contest promotes student learning and cultural understanding by encouraging students to reflect upon the life and teachings of Dr. King. Moreover, the nature of the scholarship inspires college students to embrace the core values of diversity, learning, integrity, collaboration, access, service, fellowship, and the spirit of inquiry.

Scholarship winners will be announced at this year's Diversity Conference.


The 10th Annual Indian Hills Diversity Conference is sponsored in part by:

Great Prairie AEA Iowa Department of Education Indian Hills Community College
Great Prairie AEA Iowa Department of Education Indian Hills Community College
Ottumwa Legacy Foundation U.S. Bank
Ottumwa Legacy Foundation U.S. Bank


Ashley Albertson
phone: (641) 683-5755 or (800) 726-2585, ext. 5755

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