BUILDING CONNECTIONS WITH DIALOGUE
ACADEMIC STAFF & FACULTY PROGRAM

The Intergroup Dialogue Project welcomes academic staff and faculty to apply for the Building Connections with Dialogue (BCD) program.
If you are interested in participating  in BCD, read through the information on this page and submit an application.

Building Connections with Dialogue (BCD) is an opportunity for professional development rooted in core intergroup dialogue practices. Driven by the need for more understanding and effective communication between faculty, staff, and students, the goals of the program are to: 

  • Develop and practice skills to dialogue across different experiences and points of view
  • Enhance understanding of how social identities influence interactions with colleagues and students
  • Identify strategies to integrate dialogue into virtual and in-person communication
  • Leverage dialogue to build more inclusion and create meaningful connections with staff, academic colleagues, course content, and students.

The BCD program offers participants a variety of tools, processes, and frameworks to develop more equitable and effective educational strategies, and integrate dialogue into a range of experiences with colleagues and students. Dialogue is a powerful educational tool with the capacity to enhance relationships between teachers and students (Goodman 2011), improve learning gains (Resnick et al 2018), enable communication about challenging issues and “hot topics” (Kaplowitz et al 2019), inspire critical self-reflection and understanding of structural inequality (Lynch et al 2017), develop connections across social identity groups (Zúñiga et al 2007), and model the principles of equity and respect (Huang-Nissen 1999; Romney 2003).

The Building Connections with Dialogue program is open to all Cornell faculty, lecturers, and academic staff.

This program could be for you if you want to:

  • Develop skills for more effective communication with colleagues and students from different backgrounds
  • Create more inclusive work and classroom environments
  • Enhance your understanding of how diversity and social identities impact academic spaces
  • Integrate dialogue into your virtual and in-person interactions

The Fall 2020 BCD program will be offered online. The program is structured as 5 two-hour sessions that provide opportunities to learn, practice, and implement dialogue skills with a cohort of peers. 

Participants will be asked to:

  1. Reflect, read and watch assigned materials between sessions (approximately one hour). 
  2. Attend all of the 5 two-hour sessions, and communicate promptly with IDP staff if unable to attend a session. 

The estimated total time commitment for the BCD program, including prep and session times, is 15 hours between October 2020 and January 2021.  

Session Dates

  • Friday, October  2, 2020 (3:00 PM – 5:00 PM)
  • Friday, October  23, 2020 (3:00 PM – 5:00 PM)
  • Friday, November 13, 2020 (3:00 PM – 5:00 PM)
  • Friday, December  4, 2020 (3:00 PM – 5:00 PM)
  • Friday, January 22, 2021 (1:00 PM – 3:00 PM)

The five sessions will cover the following learning areas: 

Dialogue Skills and Practice

Learning Objective: Participants learn models for understanding social identities and how difference, power, and privilege shapes interactions with students, staff and colleagues.

Topics Covered:

    • The complexity of social identity on multiple levels
    • Differences in group privilege and discrimination; experiences of access/lack of access
    • Strategies for human connection.

Connecting across Difference

Learning Objective: Participants learn models for understanding social identities and how difference, power, and privilege shapes interactions with students, staff and colleagues.

Topics Covered:

  • The complexity of social identity on multiple levels
  • Differences in group privilege and discrimination; experiences of access/lack of access
  • Strategies for human connection.

Addressing Conflict and Emotions

Learning Objective: Participants prepare for challenging conversations and explore methods of addressing conflict and strong emotions using dialogue.

Topics Covered:

  • Empathy and perspective-taking
  • Strategies for engaging conflict
  • Skills for facilitating dialogue.

Application deadline: Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Accepted applicants will be notified by Wednesday, August 26, 2020.

Apply Now

The BCD program is led by Dr. Jumoke (Jum) Warritay.

Contact Jum (otw2@cornell.edu) with any questions.