Student Engagement & Empowerment through Dialogue
The SEED Project brings undergraduate students together in small groups that meet over several sessions to build relationships and explore issues of diversity, unity, and social justice.
At the heart of community is connection. The SEED Project engages students in building connections that strengthen our community – and ultimately our society – through sustained and meaningful conversation across differing points of view, backgrounds, and experiences.
Through dialogue, we can find our way beyond the tensions stemming from difference. We can develop relationships that help us find common ground and transform conflict. By gaining a deeper understanding of each other, we can come together to create strategies for change in the face of deep social divides across difference.
SEED Project Dialogue Format:
- A SEED Project Dialogue is an on-going dialogue group that meets regularly over a defined period of time.
- Each dialogue group includes approximately 8 to 16 undergraduate students.
- Students request to participate and to be accepted must make the commitment to attend all dialogue sessions.
- Each dialogue group is led by two student SEED Dialogue Facilitators.
- Each dialogue group focuses on social issues relating to diversity and social justice.
The Meaning of Dialogue
Dialogue is different from debate or discussion. Dialogue is an intentional process of exchange, with a focus on developing mutual understanding. The goal is not to change others’ opinions, but to expand our own understanding of the world around us by listening to the experiences and perspectives of others.
What to Expect in a Dialogue
- The heart of the dialogue experience is personal exchange. We try to create an environment that encourages and supports students in sharing their personal experiences related to the dialogue topic, so that others can learn from the ways our experiences have shaped our lives and our perspectives.
- We also ask that students be committed to listening – just as others can learn from your story, you can learn by listening to what others have to share.
- In addition to personal storytelling, the Dialogue Facilitators will guide the group through activities and conversations that help explore the topic at hand.