ROOTED (Respecting Ourselves and Others Through Empathy and Dialogue) is dedicated to creating spaces of solidarity, empathy, and learning for members of the Columbia community to explore identity, power, and privilege. Led by trained student facilitators, ROOTED hosts respectful and informed discussions about diversity and explores the commonalities and disparities among the social and political treatement of different groups in society. ROOTED facilitators lead open dialogues through the ROOTED Real Talk series, plan an annual week centered on allyship, and work with student organizations, residences, and other constituencies to create tailored dialogue-based programming.
ROOTED’s tight-knit cohort of peer facilitators are trained by the Multicultural Affairs staff. The facilitators explore customs, beliefs, identities, and power differentials, grounded in the belief that small-scale relationships and understanding must be at the root of large-scale social and political change. ROOTED teaches anti-bias strategies in conjunction with conflict resolution to help students create a community that is truly anti-oppressive. ROOTED facilitators receive intensive training in facilitation skills and dialogue development to allow them to create meaningful spaces of peer-led dialogue for students across the Columbia community.
ROOTED primarily recruits student facilitators during Spring Semester who will begin the following fall. Interested students should contact email@example.com to request an application.
Potential facilitators are highly encouraged to attend ROOTED programs, including ROOTED Real Talk, before applying.
Those that are selected must attend a mandatory weekend retreat training at the start of each semester in which peer facilitators will learn how to facilitate, develop programs to share with the Columbia community, and get to know their follow ROOTED members. Selected facilitators are also expected to make a weekly committment of approximately two hours, currently scheduled for Thursdays from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Weeks that are not spent hosting ROOTED Real Talk sessions will be utilized for facilitator skill-building, planning, and cohort development. The ROOTED facilitation experience is structured such that work required outside of weekly meeting times will be minimal.
We welcome Columbia/Barnard/GS undergraduate students of all identities and experiences who are interested in social justice to apply to be ROOTED facilitators.
ROOTED Real Talk is the group’s hallmark dialogue series. Students of all identities and experiences are invited to participate in peer-facilitated conversations on a host of topics; past topics have ranged from “Politics of Hair” to “Gentrification in Harlem” to “Complications of Classism in Community Service.” Each conversation’s goal is to explore how power and privilege intersect with the topic, what participants can learn from hearing one another's experiences, and what can be collectively gained through recognizing our own power and social responsibility.
ROOTED Real Talk dialogues happen 10-12 times throughout the course of an academic year. Dates and times will be publicized at the start of each semester.
ROOTED programs explore similarities and differences among communities by using techniques such as icebreakers, role-playing, literature, experiential exercises, games, videos, and more. Through a variety of activities, students learn communication and conflict resolution strategies so that they might find healthy ways to talk about differences. In addition to ROOTED Real Talk, many communities– including Residential Advisers and student organizations – request for ROOTED workshops to be prepared their groups.
Interested in having ROOTED host a workshop for your group? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coordinated and facilitated by ROOTED members, the Allies Series is an intensive dialogue and programming series, which confronts issues of social power and privilege on individual, organizational, and institutional levels. The goal of the series is to create a space for student organizations and individuals within the larger Columbia community to grapple with the complexities and expectations associated with being an ally. Participants involved in this series attempt to deconstruct invisible boundaries that often divide communities and focus on taking positive steps towards collaborative action. The series takes place in the Spring Semester.