SU launches 2006 Intergroup Dialogue Program with CARE circles
SU launches 2006 Intergroup Dialogue Program with CARE circlesSeptember 26, 2006Matthew R. Snydermrsnyder@syr.edu
Continuing Syracuse University’s effort to educate students around diversity issues — while engaging students and members of the University community with the problems facing the world at large — the Office of Residence Life and the Office of Multicultural Affairs are offering nine Conversations About Race and Ethnicity (CARE) dialogue circles during September and October. The circles, a collaborative initiative of the Division of Student Affairs, the Office of Academic Affairs and the Community Wide Dialogue to End Racism (CWD), are open to SU students.
The circles are running once a week for six weeks, through Oct. 23. Sessions are held in SU residence halls on Mondays and Thursdays from 7-9 p.m.
Launched last year as part of SU’s broader Intergroup Dialogue Program, CARE circles bring together small groups of interested students to achieve greater awareness of issues and experiences across diverse cultural, ethnic and racial backgrounds. Participants meet for two hours weekly with two CWD-certified facilitators to share personal stories focusing on race and ethnicity. Selected readings, including “Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria and Other Conversations About Race” by Beverly Daniel Tatum (HarperCollins Publishers, 1997), and other activities serve to enhance students’ understanding of these issues in broader society.
Throughout the Fall 2005 and Spring 2006 semesters, Office of Residence Life staff members participated in CARE circles. These staff members now serve as valuable resources to residential students and can help answer questions about going through a CARE dialogue circle. The CARE team is led by James Duah-Agyeman, director of student support and diversity education/multicultural affairs, and Rebecca Reed Kantrowitz, director of residence life, in collaboration with Judy Hamilton, faculty associate.
Additional Intergroup Dialogue efforts at SU include a pair of for-credit dialogue circle classes offered this semester; last year’s Raising Our Voices Diversity Summit, which brought SU community members together with local high school children; Human Resources-sponsored dialogue circles for staff; and SU’s ongoing participation in the Multiversity Project, a national research initiative to gauge the educational and social benefits of dialogue circles.
To learn more about the Intergroup Dialogue Program at SU, visit http://intergroupdialogue.syr.edu.