I wanted a space for dialogue, not intellectualist discussions. I wanted a space in which to be vulnerable, honest, and personal. I wanted to learn from others who wanted the same.
– Student Participant, Fall 2018
A Different Dialogue engages students, from one or more social identity groups, in facilitated dialogue about the similarities and differences of experience that exist within a group and/or between and across groups. The goal of A Different Dialogue is for students to develop comfort with, and skill for, discourse on difficult topics in order to foster positive, meaningful, and sustained cross-group relationships.
The Georgetown Model
A Different Dialogue is Georgetown University’s 9-year-old intergroup dialogue program, which aims to enable students to develop comfort with—and skills for—meaningful cross-group interactions and relationship building. Modeled after the University of Michigan program, A Different Dialogue seeks to engage Georgetown students of all backgrounds in discussions around promoting, fostering, and sustaining diversity.
Beginning in 2010, A Different Dialogue has offered over 35 co-curricular, peer-facilitated dialogue sessions for students, focusing on topics ranging from Sexuality & Gender Identity; Race, Ethnicity & Nationality; Social Class & Capital; Religion; and Ability and Disability. In Spring 2016, A Different Dialogue partnered with the Dr. Leslie Hinkson and the Center for New Designs in Learning and Scholarship (CNDLS) to offer curricular dialogues, in which participated in a staff-facilitated intergroup dialogue experience as an additional discussion component of the course.
The A Different Dialogue Program is a unique bridge program which allows student identity development to flourish within an academic setting. This program is made possible by a strong partnership established between the Center for New Designs in Learning & Scholarship and the Division of Student Affairs; allowing faculty, staff, and students to work collaboratively to develop a greater understanding of identity and inclusion.