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SDO: Fall Cardinal Conversations Series “A Great Success”

December 21, 2021

Throughout the fall semester, the Student Government Association, Lavery Library, and Senior Diversity Officer Dr. Marlowe Washington, led monthly Cardinal Conversations, giving the campus community an opportunity to hold in-depth discussions about diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Washington said he is proud of the students’ initiative to gather and participate in difficult discussions and learn from one another. The conversations followed a critical sustained dialogue with the purpose of actively listening to others and analyzing next steps. Washington said sustained dialogue is about listening to and challenging someone’s ideas without personally attacking the person; a task that is not always easy or comfortable. “It is in that discomfort that we can begin to move forward,” Washington said.

There have been extensive conversations and proposals on how to deepen the discussions from the student perspective. “There are always lessons to be learned, and still so much work to be done - even after many steps forward,” Washington explained.

This spring, organizers hope to change the committee process to involve more people and increase the input and output resulting from each of the conversation sessions.

To those who have participated, the biggest benefit has been bringing people together safely, especially during the pandemic, to engage in a dialogue that is relevant and important.

“I am very proud of the students for their commitment, especially Jenna Vinoya who has been a young DEI advocate, along with Michael Lilholt, Ian Klank, and Cindy Ramos,” Washington added. “I am very excited about the work they are doing to make Fisher a stronger and more inclusive place.”

Cardinal Conversations will continue this spring, with two sessions for faculty and staff to be held on Tuesday, Jan. 11 and Friday, Jan. 14. Register for either session online.

This article was written by Leslie Noble ’21, a marketing major and PR Writing Intern with the Office of Marketing and Communications.