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Stubblefield Institute Civility Club event promotes open communication

ISSUED: 14 February 2023

SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV — The Shepherd University Stubblefield Institute Civility Club hosted “Bowling Through Barriers” on February 9, an evening designed to help attendees participate in open communication on important topics.

Students and Stubblefield Institute board members and staff first enjoyed a meal together. After dinner, Civility Club President Chloe Bailey organized attendees into groups so students could engage with people not inside their typical circle of acquaintances. The goal of the evening was to teach students how to work with one another even when they don’t share commonalities of friendship.

While bowling, the teams discussed their thoughts about campus life. They shared their ideas for social action on campus. Issues of importance included accessibility, mental health, campus safety, and fundraising to sustain student groups.

“I hope that by being in a situation in which they are not usually involved, the students left with a greater understanding of the processes involved with coming to consensus in groups of people with varying viewpoints and backgrounds,” Bailey said.

The Civility Club is a student-led initiative of the Bonnie and Bill Stubblefield Institute for Civil Political Communications at Shepherd University. The students in this group are passionate about advancing civil discourse among all Shepherd students. The club promotes kindness, understanding, civility, and civic engagement and educates the campus community about politics and polarization while promoting constructive problem solving.

About the Stubblefield Institute:

The mission of the Bonnie and Bill Stubblefield Institute for Civil Political Communications is to serve as an active center for the study and promotion of civil political discourse, inspire intelligent, authentic, and constructive debate, and encourage positive civic engagement for both students and the public alike. We seek to demonstrate that when opposing viewpoints are respected and legitimized in ways that avoid negative labeling, alienation, and silencing, it can strengthen our nation’s ability to better challenges and solve problems.

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