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Building Connections & Bridging Differences Initiative

Doing Disagreements Well




CAB is excited to let you know of a project that involves the collaborative leadership of the University Ombuds, Health & Wellness, Compassionate Action Board and Institutional Research.  We recently received a very generous contribution from an anonymous donor for a project called the Kindness and Bridging Differences Initiative Fund.  (During the discussion and planning process it became evident that a name change was needed. The project has been renamed to Building Connections and Bridging Differences.) The Fund will “provide support to further W&M’s pursuit to promote deep human connections and bridge differences in innovative and creative ways while moving toward its strategic vision of work, knowledge, and service.”  This contribution was inspired by hearing the dialogue between President Rowe and Chancellor Gates during Inauguration Weekend in 2019 about kindness and “doing disagreements well.” 

The goals of this project center around developing initiatives that promote empathy and encourage civil discourse around difficult topics and contrasting viewpoints, advancing the mission, vision and values of the College and the goals of the Charter for Compassion, and evaluating the measurable results of these efforts.

A team with members from across campus has been formed to develop, plan and design branding, publicity and training for the initiative.