2007 - 2011 Conversation Dinner Topics

Tuesday, April 12, 2011
5:00pm - 7:00pm
College Center Multipurpose Room

Courageous Conversations:  
Over the past year, the Campus Life Resource Group has sought to encourage serious conversation on a range of topics.  We complete this year's series of discussions by inviting back previous participants, and some new faces, for a conversation about the climate for serious and sustained dialogue on campus.

Where are the places and spaces where you dare to share your passions and views on local and world issues? Do you have the resources you need to engage such issues? Which ones do you engage? Which ones get left out? What have your experiences at Vassar taught you about what enables and what stifles conversations where people take risks?

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011
5:00pm - 7:00pm
College Center Multipurpose Room

Identity and Community
Are we one community or many small communities?  In what way do or don't we show our sense of being a collective Vassar community?

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010
5:00pm - 7:00pm
College Center Multipurpose Room

Liberalism: the Unspoken Religion at Vassar?
It is frequently said that Vassar is a liberal campus; some have even suggested that this perceived liberalism has certain religious elements.  What do we mean when we call ourselves liberal? What are the contexts in which other positions are afforded or not afforded space for dialogue on campus?

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010
5:00pm – 7:00pm
College Center Multipurpose Room

Not at Vassar?
Reflecting on the recent invasion of privacy and ensuing suicide of a LGBTQ student at Rutgers University, some have made comments such as, “That wouldn’t happen here; our college is more tolerant and accepting than other colleges and universities.”  Is this accurate?

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Tuesday, April 20, 2010
5:00pm – 7:00pm
College Center Multipurpose Room

Thinking Social Justice
Several comments received on All College Day suggested that the event did not address a particular incident.  Given the perennial quality of recent incidents on campus regarding insensitive advertising, do you think that this signals a need to rethink the way in which we address such issues?  What would that be?  How can we create and sustain an environment that ensures justice to and supports the needs of all members of our campus community?

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Thursday, November 19, 2009
5:00pm – 7:00pm
Kenyon Club Room

Safe Space, Safety, Community and Home at Vassar
How do we interpret safety and safe spaces on campus?  What does safe space mean to you?  How do our concerns about safety affect the surrounding community?  And, if home is defined as a place where one feels safe, secure and comfortable, for whom is Vassar a home?

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009
5:00pm – 7:00pm
College Center, Multi-purpose Room

ETHOS is: the fundamental character or spirit of a culture, the underlying sentiment that informs the beliefs, customs, or practices of a community.
Given the prevailing customs, dialogues and practices on campus, what is Vassar’s ethos?  Is community reflected in it?  How has it changed or evolved?

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Thursday, April 23, 2009
5:00pm – 7:00pm
College Center Multi-purpose Room

The Year in Review
What are some of the major events that have impacted you inside and outside of Vassar this past year?  How have some of these events affected your life on campus? How have this year's events shaped your priorities? How has your community changed as a result of these events?

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November 20, 2008
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
College Center Multi-purpose Room

SHARED GOVERNANCE is a process by which faculty, students, administrators, and staff participate in significant decisions concerning college life.  What does this mean at Vassar?  What is the role of faculty, students, and staff in shared governance? In what ways does shared governance impact student and campus life at Vassar?  Do you think the system of shared governance is effective at Vassar?

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October 14, 2008
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
College Center Multi-purpose Room

Financial Aid, Access, and Socioeconomic Diversity at Vassar
What are the hidden costs in attending Vassar?  What are the benefits of socioeconomic diversity and Vassar’s new need-blind policy?  Are we effective as an institution in disseminating information to prospective students and others about financial aid and access?

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April 10, 2008
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
The Aula

Transparency and Accountability
A conversation about community at Vassar, and how each of us can play a role in fostering a campus climate that reflects Vassar’s values of excellence and inclusion in all facets of campus life.  Discussion topics will include issues such as communal values, community responses to recent bias incidents and vandalism, and examining how to communicate concerns to the campus community.  We want to hear your voice and point of view.

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November 28, 2007
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
College Center Multi-purpose Room

Breaking the Cycle: Seeing Patterns in Isolated Incidents
In recent years, several hateful symbols or messages have negatively impacted the campus community.  This conversation will focus on proactive ways to address campus climate issues.

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October 30, 2007
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
College Center Multi-purpose Room

Alcohol and Drugs at Vassar: The Impact on Self and Community