Space Still Available for Difficult Dialogues Training Program for IUP Employees

Posted on 2/14/2019 3:08:14 PM

Not sure exactly how to say what you need to say?

Space is still available for the two-day Difficult Dialogues program that will be offered February 28 and March 1 in the HUB Ohio Room.

Libby Roderick, director of the Difficult Dialogues Initiative, associate director of the Center for Advancing Faculty excellence at the University of Alaska Anchorage, and vice chair of the Difficult Dialogues National Resource Center, will present the program.

The schedule for Difficult Dialogues is:

  • 8:30 to 9:00 a.m. — Registration and coffee
  • 9:00 a.m. — Workshop begins
  • 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. — Lunch (pre-registration required for lunch)
  • 3:00 p.m. — Workshop concludes

Event organizers stress that it is not necessary for participants to be present for the full program; you can participate as your schedules permit, either for one day only, or for partial day or days. Lunch will be offered to participants who are attending the program over the lunch hour, but pre-registration for lunch is required.

Roderick works with faculty across the United States and in South Africa to increase their capacity to effectively conduct difficult dialogues in higher education, and to apply indigenous ways of teaching and learning. She is also an internationally recognized and award-winning singer/songwriter and recording artist. 

If you are interested in participating in this workshop, please register by February 26 to by sending an email to

More than 60 people—a mixture of faculty and staff—attended the December training at IUP.

Craig Dillaman, director of New Student Orientation, was one of the participants in December.

“Participating in the Difficult Dialogue workshop allowed participants to learn proactive approaches to address sensitive topics,” he said. “Having participation from several areas of the campus community allowed for the development of new connections. Attendees stated over and over again that the whole university community could benefit from attending this workshop in the future. I agree with that sentiment and hope others will find time in their schedules to attend, reflect, and use the lessons here on campus.”

Rich Muth, director of regional campuses, agreed about the effectiveness of the program.

“I attended thinking this would be a diversity awareness and sensitivity program for environments like the classroom,” Muth said. “What I found, after attending the two days, was that I now have a ‘toolbox’ of techniques and ideas to foster healthy conversation not only in a classroom, but in many different types of settings. In its simplest description, this program helps you learn immediacy skills that foster powerful conversations involving diversity and much more.”