Jen Fry is the ‘social justice educator’ for today’s college sports teams

Jen Fry's regularly speaks to student athletes on topics including Whiteness and 'anti-racism.'

Campus Reform previously reported on Fry's work with a group of students at Bowdoin College, which also hired the Institute for Sport and Social Justice to train its athletics staff.

Jen Fry is self-described “social justice educator” who is often tapped to speak to college athletes and coaches about diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI).

A Division II volleyball player, Fry coached the sport for 15 years at several colleges before she came to the conclusion that “there was a need for educating not only our student-athletes of all ages, but the administration, staff, and coaches who train them through an antiracist lens on issues of race, inclusion, intersectionality, diversity, and equity,”  according to her website. 

In September, Campus Reform reported on Fry’s work with Bowdoin College student athletes after the school made diversity, equity, and inclusion training mandatory for coaches.

Bowdoin engaged Fry to speak with student athletes around the same time the college hired the Institute for Sport and Social Justice to train its athletics department as part of a mandatory DEI training. 

Through her “social justice education firm,” JenFryTalks, Fry conducts her teaching through an “anti-racist lens” in order to “advise on best practices that will create equitable searches, hiring, onboarding practices, methods of retaining staff, retaining student-athletes, supporting student-athletes, staff and coaches, and community building.”

Her services include 45- and 90-minute keynote speeches, two-to-four-hour virtual or in-person workshops, and one-to-two-day engagements and consulting sessions that discuss “race, gender, diversity, inclusion, social justice education, power, privilege and the effects on both those within the marginalized and dominant communities.”

Additionally, she offers a seven-part e-learning course for $299 called “The Invisible Manual: Creating a Culture of Inclusive Excellence.”

Previous webinars include “Whiteness in Athletics,” “Whiteness in Higher Education” and “Leading Through an Anti-Racist Lens.” Each of them are available for purchase for $20.00. 

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Fry’s higher education clients include Mississippi State University, Syracuse University, University of California- Los Angeles, Harvard University, American University and the University of North Texas.

Speaking to Boston University student athletes in October, Fry said, “Just because you didn’t make the system, doesn’t mean you don’t have an obligation to dismantle it.”  

“Conversation[s] focused on race, racism, whiteness, anti-racism, bias, and frames/lenses with specific examples pertaining to the Boston area,” an article about Fry’s partnership with BU revealed.

Campus Reform spoke to Chiara Tibbitt, who is one of the Boston University athletes that attended her training.

“She talked about different lenses we all look through and how there are other lenses we should try to look through. Those lenses that others around us are always looking through,” Tibbitt said. 

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Fry also spoke at a TedXDuke event, where she discussed the imbalance of the number of student-athletes of color versus the race of coaches and staff. 

“For male sport coaches, 88.6 percent of them are white. For female sport coaches, 88.7 percent are white,” Fry said during the talk. 

She continued: 

Her services have also been rendered for national organizations such as the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), Southeastern Conference, NCAA Inclusion, Lone Star Conference, Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association and American Volleyball Coaches Association. 

Fry also offers resources that “help” readers “learn how to be a better ally, how to understand whiteness and privilege, how to be antiracist, and how to start conversations with your kids about race.” 

Examples include: 

Hair Discrimination: A Timeline of Black Folks’ Hair Making White People Uncomfortable

When White Women Practice the Politics of Polite, The Violence of Nice

21 Inspiring LGBTQ-Themed Children’s Books

I am Drowning in Whiteness

How to Be a Better White Person in 2020

Explaining White Privilege to a Broke White Person

15 Books to Help Kids Understand The Black Lives Matter

A Racial Justice Guide to Thanksgiving for Educators and Families

Stop peddling the black-on-black crime myth. These DOJ stats prove it’s not a thing.

This year, Fry was recognized as a Champion of Diversity and Inclusion by the NCAA Minority Opportunities and Interests Committee and office of inclusion for her efforts in pursuit of “advocating for and advancing others in inclusive efforts around athletics.”

Fry declined to respond to Campus Reform’s request for comment. Campus Reform reached out to BU Athletics for comment; this article will be updated accordingly.