The Community Engagement Advocates are student leaders trained to facilitate anti-racism and anti-oppression workshops, dialogues and trainings. These interactive workshops are designed to create brave spaces for students to explore a wide range of topics race, class, gender, sexuality, able-ism, religion, and community engagement. The CEA program works to foster a campus culture of inclusion, equity, justice and empathy, to prepare students to navigate some of society’s most pressing challenges related to power, oppression, and identity. This program is co-run by the Center for Public Service and the Office of Multiculutral Affairs.
Workshop participants will participate in interactive activities and open dialogues designed to help them grow in their awareness of self, different lived experiences, history, culture and systems of oppression. These experiences will both challenge participants’ assumptions and perspectives while supporting a collaborative learning environment, through open and honest dialogue.
Community Engagement dialogues focus on preparing students for their work with New Orleans communities. Students explore issues of power, privilege and identity in the context of community engagement activities and develop a sense of civic responsibility beyond a deficit-based or charity mind frame. Participants will:
- Gain an increased knowledge of the New Orleans community while challenging common assumptions and stereotypes;
- Explore the power of language and potential positive and negative impacts of language in different cultural contexts;
- Consider the relationships between systemic causes for social issues and how they relate to their service projects;
- Gain tools to analyze community needs and assets through observation, deep listening and relationship building; and
- Understand the importance of reciprocal relationships and deep listening in the context of community engagement.
Campus-Based dialogues focus on building greater awareness, empathy and inclusion within the Tulane community. Participants will explore their social group identities, share personal experiences and opinions, and dive deeper into language, concepts and perceptions related to diversity, equity and inclusion. Participants will:
- Explore their identity in relation to others, looking through an intersectional lens at the way identity interacts with power and privilege;
- Explore terms, definitions and language around issues of identity, oppression and empowerment (including race, class, gender, sexuality, religion, politics, ability status, age and more);
- Consider the relationships between interpersonal, institutional and structural forms of oppression;
- Examine stereotypes, assumptions and beliefs which can lead to misunderstanding, prejudice, bias and bigotry;
- Work to build mutual understanding and positive relationships with peers across various backgrounds and experiences; and
- Practice and develop behaviors related to cultural humility, such as listening deeply, suspending judgments, cross-cultural communication tools and more.
Community Engagement Advocates are available by request to facilitate workshops for classes, service-learning courses, residence halls, student organizations and other Tulane organizations. Request a Community Engagement Advocate dialogue by submitting this form. Please submit all requests at least three weeks in advance.
Community Engagement Advocates are diverse leaders from across Tulane’s campus who are trained to facilitate dialogues and workshops related to diversity, equity and inclusion. Community Engagement Advocates commit to participate in a year-long training designed to help them understand and explore key social justice issues and facilitation methods. CEAs participate in an intensive week long training during the summer, and then engage in a weekly class session focused on ongoing professional development around community engagement and social justice throughout the year. CEAs are expected to facilitate 6-12 workshops per semester, including larger events like New Student Orientation, Greek Life workshops, Entering Communities sessions and more. CEAs receive a stipend every semester and course credit for each semester they participate in the program..
The CEA program is open to undergraduate and graduate level applicants, and rising Sophomores are highly encouraged to apply. CEAs are passionate about a wide range of social justice issues including racism, heterosexism, cissexism, ableism, ageism, classism, immigration justice, and more. We are looking for students who are passionate about social justice education, committed to anti-racism/anti-oppression, and interested in being a part of a tight-knit community of student organizers and trainers.
Community Engagement Advocates go through a rigorous three-part certification process which includes observing facilitators, a content exam and mock facilitations. To apply to be a CEA, fill out the online application.