Vanderbilt University (TN) recently launched its Dialogue Vanderbilt initiative to promote civil discourse and better understand and address political polarization. The program aims to host student-focused programming and a schedule of ongoing events for campus/community members, including October’s Free Speech Week. According to Vanderbilt News, “Student activities will include group discussions to explore issues such as how to listen, how to navigate challenging and controversial conversations, how to advocate for issues of importance and how to disagree while maintaining civil dialogue.”

“Polarization has made it harder to have constructive conversations on college campuses, in the halls of government, and throughout American life,” Chancellor Daniel Diermeier said. “For universities, open, respectful conversations and debate are essential. They are fundamental to education and research-to personal and intellectual growth, to finding bold solutions to complex problems and to ensuring that all members of a university community feel they belong. Rooted in Vanderbilt’s long tradition of free expression, Dialogue Vanderbilt is designed to help restore civil discourse on our campus and beyond.” 

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