Sustained Dialogue at Dickinson College:

“A process of genuine interaction through which human beings listen to each other deeply enough to be changed by what they learn. Each makes a serious effort to take other’s concerns into their own picture, even when disagreement persists. No participant gives up their identity, but each recognizes enough of the other’s valid human claims so that each will act differently toward the other,” Dr. Harold Saunders (1930-2016).

  • Former United States Assistant Secretary of State for Intelligence and Research (1975-78)
  • Former United States Assistant Secretary of State for Near East Affairs (1978-81)
  • Founder, Sustained Dialogue Institute


Dickinson College strongly values a culture of dialogue as a way to build community and voice campus concerns productively. Dickinson has affiliated with the Sustained Dialogue Campus Network (SDCN) since 2001, making it one of the first colleges in the country to adapt the Sustained Dialogue model.

Basic overview:
  • Sustained dialogue is a peace process applied after the Camp David Accords in situations where people in bitter conflict needed change.
  • In 1999, a group of Princeton students began the Sustained Dialogue experiment to improve campus culture.
  • Dickinson College was one of the first members of the Sustained Dialogue Campus Network, joining in fall 2001.
SD group 1 SD group2

Recent History

In recent years Dickinson has employed its membership in SDCN to address the campus’s needs in a variety of ways including providing training opportunities for community members, inviting the campus community to participate in dialogues, and hosting semester long dialogue groups. Below are SDCN activities that have occurred since fall 2015 when the Popel Shaw Center for Race & Ethnicity became the campus’s coordinating body for Dickinson’s Sustained Dialogue chapter. Future dialogue trainings, events, and groups will be announced through various forms of media and archived on this page.

SD_OctCaf SD Sept group
  • September 12-13, 2015: Sustained Dialogue moderator training (facilitated by Rhonda Fitzgerald) (Althouse 110)
  • September 28, 2015: Dialogue to Action campus dialogue (Allison Hall)
  • October 21, 2015: Dialogue to Action: The Remix (Dining Hall)
  • December 7, 2015: Dialogue to Action: The Remix 2.0 (Dining Hall)
  • April 6, 2016: Chipotle & Chat (Davidson-Wilson)
  • April 14, 2016: Redd’s & Reflections (Drayer Hall)
SD Remix poster SD Reshall poster SD revised poster
  • October 4, 2016: Free speech: Pushing boundaries or crossing lines? (Social Hall)
  • November 28, 2016: Facilitator & moderator training (facilitated by Rhonda Fitzgerald) (HUB Siderooms 201-202)
  • November 29, 2016: Facilitator & moderator training (facilitated by Rhonda Fitzgerald) (HUB Siderooms 201-202)
  • February-April 2017: Masculinities at Dickinson dialogue group (co-moderated by Peter Leavitt, Visiting Assistant Professor, Psychology, and Vincent L. Stephens, Director, Popel Shaw Center for Race & Ethnicity)
  • February-April 2017: Campus comfort and safety dialogue group (co-moderated by Linda Brindeau, Assistant Professor, French & Francophone Studies, and Ariel Le, ’19)
SD Oct Free Speech SD FAS poster