Director, Dialogue Across Difference Programs

Job Details

Position Overview

The University of the South, commonly known as Sewanee, comprises a nationally ranked residential College of Arts and Sciences and a School of Theology. The University is strongly committed to the values of intellectual inquiry, diversity, equity and inclusion, and living and serving in community. Situated on 13,000 acres atop Tennessee’s Cumberland Plateau, Sewanee is known for its stunning natural beauty while providing easy access to Chattanooga, Nashville, and Huntsville. The University is affiliated with the Episcopal Church and welcomes students, staff, and faculty from all backgrounds, faiths, and traditions.

Committed to creating and maintaining a diverse and inclusive campus with respectful engagement in the communities we support, Sewanee's Office of Civic Engagement seeks to enhance the impact of its current Dialogue Across Difference Program under the leadership of its next director of dialogue programs.

The University of the South is an equal opportunity educational institution that is committed to creating and maintaining a diverse and inclusive campus environment.

We expect to begin the review of applications during the second week of February. The position will remain open until filled.

Primary Function: Working with faculty, staff, and students in the College and the School of Theology, the Director of Dialogue across Difference Programs creates, promotes, and presents training and initiatives focused on democratic engagement and enhanced mutual understanding through respectful on dialogue on racial, religious, ethnic, and political differences.
This position reports to Director of Civic Engagement.
Career Band: 2DPosition Description

Typical Duties & Responsibilities:

Train and develop capacity for students, faculty, and staff to engage in and lead dialogue in the classroom, programming, and leadership. Experience working with diverse audiences and communities. Experience with Reflective Structured Dialogue and Public Deliberation methodologies preferred Develop and manage student Dialogue Ambassadors Program, mentoring a cohort of student dialogue facilitators in implementation of dialogue programming.In partnership with relevant offices as Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Student Life, and embed dialogue and dialogue training into recurring campus programming, such as training for Dorm Resident Assistants, Student Government Leaders, Black Student Union, Queer, & Ally House student leaders, student mentors in the First Year Experience and Orientation leaders, and developing dialogue curriculua for programs interested in developing their own training.Expand dialogue programming to engage with the Office of Civic Engagement’s (OCE) local community partners, defined mostly through the poverty alleviation work of its AmeriCorps VISTA Program and its grant-making co-sponsored through the South Cumberland Community Fund. This focus will be on supporting and building capacity for robust public deliberation primarily on equity issues and poverty alleviation. Support OCE’s Democratic Engagement Work, developing dialogues across political differences on issues such as racial and gender equality, voting rights, a living wage, sustainability, and so forth. supporting DebateWatches, and other programming as identified. Collaborate with other OCE programs supporting the incorporating dialogue and reflection into service internships, service programming, democratic engagement, and work with community partners.Play collaborative role in the OCE and participate in monthly Directors meetings. Maintain relationships with the related fields of dialogue in higher education, public deliberation, etc. Develop and implement program assessmentBudgetary Responsibility: Monitors expenditures against budget; prepares budget data for review/approval by supervisor/department head.
Personal Interaction/Communication:
  • Student Contact: Yes
  • Internal: Faculty and staff
  • External: Community members; Regents and Trustees; other external constituencies as needed.
  • Attributes of a Successful Candidate

    Experience working with diverse populations is desired. We strongly encourage applicants from diverse backgrounds to apply.

    Education: BA required, MA preferred
    Experience: 5+ years of experience in leading and training facilitators in dialogue methodologies
    Licenses & Certifications: Certification in facilitation/dialogue methodologies, including experience with Reflective Structured Dialogue, Public Deliberation methodologies, or related methodologies.

    Supplemental Information

    Any additional requirements specific to this position:

    Must be able to wear an approved mask for prolonged periods while performing job duties and responsibilities.

    Employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 subject to an approved medical or religious exemption.


    Working at Sewanee: The University of the South

    Known familiarly as “Sewanee” by its students, faculty, staff and friends, The University of the South offers an unmatched educational experience. The university remains purposefully small and dedicated to building a sense of community. All classes are taught by professors, not graduate teaching assistants, and close faculty-student interaction ensures that each student enjoys a rich and personal educational experience. It is not unusual for students and faculty members to work shoulder to shoulder on research projects and journal articles, to meet for coffee at a local eatery, or to serve together as members of the university orchestra, volunteer fire department, and other civic groups.

    The result of such individualized education is clear in the academic success of Sewanee students and alumni. The university has had 26 Rhodes Scholars—a number that puts Sewanee in the top four nationally among American liberal arts colleges—as well as 27 NCAA Postgraduate Fellows, 43 Watson Fellows, and dozens of Fulbright Scholars, and has an acceptance rate to graduate and professional schools that far outpaces its peers. The School of Theology has added to its alumni ranks countless bishops, including three of the last four presiding bishops of the Episcopal Church.

    Sewanee offers 36 majors, 32 minors, and 15 special programs, along with pre-medicine, pre-nursing, pre-law, and pre-business. More than 40 percent of students participate in study-abroad programs, and a comprehensive endowed program that provides financial support for summer internships has greatly strengthened career development for undergraduates. See more about Sewanee in the "Sewanee Snapshot" here.

    In an era of specialization, Sewanee upholds the broad-based ideals of liberal education as a surer means to success. At the University of the South, the adherence to outstanding liberal arts education and enduring traditions of honor, community, and respect have transformed many generations of students, and have earned the abiding loyalty and support of alumni who are enjoying lives of integrity, leadership, and service.

    The University is located atop the Cumberland Plateau between Nashville and Chattanooga, Tennessee. Sewanee’s physical environment, which includes the 13,000–acre Domain (as the campus and surrounding area is known), provides a remarkable academic and recreational resource, and an unparalleled place in which to study and reflect. It invites students to engage in both a multitude of outdoor activities and careful study of the natural environment.

    As the University celebrated the 150th anniversary of its founding in 2007–2008, it looked back on a rich history and forward to new opportunities for the next generations. “The essence of Sewanee is consistent from generation to generation,” said Vice Chancellor emeritus Joel Cunningham. “We are a university dedicated to liberal education, to time-honored traditions, and to our commitment to serve our students and this nation. We have been successful in advancing our mission, and I believe we have the resources and the will to ensure that Sewanee’s best years are still to come.”

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