There is great value and benefit to the Carleton community, and each of us as individuals, having more opportunities to engage in dialogue on complicated and sometimes divisive topics and to learn from others with varied backgrounds and perspectives.

Every member of the Carleton community is invited to participate in the Winter Term Dialogue — a program designed to foster community dialogue around Convocation presentations. The focus of the program is on practicing and strengthening skills to engage in difficult conversations, such as listening to others’ perspectives without immediately categorizing those perspectives, recognizing how one’s own experience shapes one’s ideas about a topic, and engaging and finding connections with people whose views are different than one’s own.  


After an initial meeting, participants in the program will attend Convocation in Weeks 1, 3, and 5, and participate in small group (~12 people) discussions in the week following Convo. Participants will be part of the same group for the entire dialogue period; some groups will be student-only and some groups will include a mix of faculty, staff, and students (you may express your preference for the type of group to which you would like to be assigned). At the end of the scheduled sessions, participants will gather to reflect on the experience of engaging in dialogue around Convo and lessons learned. The total time commitment for participation, including attending the Convocations, will be about 10 hours during the term.


We hope that a broad cross-section of the Carleton community will participate in this initiative. However, the scheduled times for the small group dialogues may limit some people’s ability to participate. If you are interested in being a part of this winter’s dialogue initiative, please register online by Friday, December 1 to indicate your interest and share your scheduling availability.