Bing tracking

COVID-19: Updates and Plans ›

Workshop Offerings

The Sabo Center for Democracy and Citizenship offers workshops and training sessions on topics related to civic, community, and political engagement for students, community members, staff, and faculty. See upcoming workshops on our events calendar.

 

Basics of Organizing: Public vs. Private, Power, and Self-Interest

Interested in learning about community organizing but don’t know where to start? This workshop is for you. Learn some of the foundational concepts of organizing to get started on your change making journey. Participants in this workshop will gain an understanding of relational power, the difference between public and private relationships, and how self-interest motivates us to act.

Deliberative Dialogue

According to research through the National Issues Forum, Americans are deeply worried that the social fabric may be unraveling due to polarization. A deliberative approach helps to address the problem of polarization. Deliberative practice promotes learning, listening, and understanding across lines of difference, and can lead to collective action. This experience-based training for moderating deliberative dialogues offers the opportunity for participants to engage in a deliberative dialogue, and to develop facilitation skills for moderating deliberative dialogues.

Democracy and the Philosophy of Public Work

In this dynamic workshop, participants will learn about the theory and practice of public work. Participants will leave being able to distinguish between three ways of conceptualizing democracy and what it means to be a citizen, and will understand civic agency and its role in public problem solving.

One-to-One Relational Meetings

If you want to create change, few things are more important as one-to-one relational meetings. One-to-ones are at the heart of community organizing and leadership. These conversations are about establishing a public relationship with someone, and sharing stories as a way to understand their motivations and self interests. They can uncover common values and interests that might lead to collaborative work in support of the change you are trying to create. This mix of personal, sometimes intimate knowledge leading to public action holds unique value. Participants in this workshop will learn and practice one-to-one relationship building for organizing and public work.

Orientation to Community-Based Learning

Through community-based learning, students engage with a local community or organization around co-created goals. These experiences do not take place in a vacuum and have potential for substantial impacts making it important to do thoughtful preparation. Participants will engage in reflection about the skills, capacities and lens they will be bringing to their work, reflection about their pre-existing knowledge and remaining questions about the community they’ll be working in, and learn helpful practices for navigating collaborative work in a new context.

Power Mapping

People interested in promoting positive social change— through public work, civic action, advocacy and other vehicles—need to be aware of who else cares about their cause, and the political and social power structures in play. Social change agents need tools to access resources and to put their ideas into action. Power mapping gives participants a way to think about different kinds of power, and a set of tools to access the power needed to make things happen.

Public Narrative

Using Marshall Ganz’s framework for storytelling as a catalyst for social change, participants in this workshop will learn about the power of the story of self, the story of us, and the story of now, and will begin to develop their own public narratives.

 

Join the Sabo Center for a One-to-One Relational Meetings Workshop

Blog post by Emily Braverman.

 

Do you want to learn significant tools for building bonds with others and making social change?

 

If you want to create change, few things are more important than one-to-one relational meetings. One-to-ones are when two people who intentionally engage in conversation to learn about one another, sharing personal knowledge and values to build a connection that will eventually create public action. These conversations are focused on establishing a public relationship with someone. By sharing stories, participants can understand one another’s motivations and self interests, and find commons areas for collaboration and action.

 

The Sabo Center is hosting two opportunities to learn about one-to-one meetings and to practice this important tool for relationship building, organizing, and public work. Come and join us!

 

Wednesday, October 24, 3:10-5:10 pm, OGC 100

Thursday, October 25, 3:40-5:40 pm, Marshall Room

Poster for One-to-One Relational meetings Workshop

Democracy Augsburg Teach-In: A Personal Look at Our Criminal Justice System

Blog post by Emily Braverman

The Smart Justice Campaign and personal experience with the Minnesota criminal justice system are two topicsPoster for Democracy Augsburg: A Personal Look at the Criminal Justice System event with details that will be discussed, explored, and analyzed during a Democracy Augsburg Teach-In coming up mid-October.

Elizer Darris and Anika Bowie, both organizers with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), will discuss their experiences with the Minnesota criminal justice system and their organizing work through the Smart Justice Campaign.

After successfully getting his life sentence overturned on appeal, Elizer Darris became an activist in prison and an advocate for his fellow inmates. Upon release, he began working in local politics. He currently runs field operations for the Smart Justice Campaign. Based in the Twin Cities, the Smart Justice Campaign is focused on reducing America’s prison population and combating racial inequity across the country. Darris’s main goal is to reduce widespread incarceration.

Anika Bowie is a powerful advocate for people of color. As co-chair of the Minneapolis NAACP Criminal Justice Reform Committee, she connects with government officials, community members, and local youth around reform of the criminal justice system, and is best known for being a group organizer, educator, and leader.

The Sabo Center for Democracy and Citizenship will be hosting Elizer Darris and Anika Bowie for a Democracy Augsburg Teach-In on October 15, 2018, at 5 p.m. in the Oren Gateway Center, Room 201. Please join us.

What’s at Stake on the Sixth?

A Democracy Augsburg Teach-in

Blog post by Emily Braverman

 

The Midterm Elections.  Poster for What's at Stake on the Sixth? Event.

If you aren’t aware of what the midterm elections are, no worries! Here at the Sabo Center, we broke it down into an easily understandable, short guide:

U.S. presidents serve four-year terms. In between these terms, there is a midterm election. Participation during these elections tend to be lower than general elections, but they are very important!

During the midterm election:

  • Members of the U.S House of Representatives are up for election.
  • Most U.S. states elect their governors.

In addition, the political landscape may change because the president’s party may lose seats in both houses of Congress; this might change which party is in control of the legislature. This, in turn, will impact the president’s ability to pursue an agenda during the second half of his/her term.

Augsburg University’s Sabo Center for Democracy and Citizenship welcomes everyone to a presentation by political science professor Andrew Aoki, followed by a discussion about the midterm elections. This will take place on October 19th, at Oren Gateway Center – room 100, between 4:30-5:30 p.m.

The 2018 midterm elections will bring forward many important issues to discuss and vote on. Topics at “What’s at Stake on the Sixth?” might include:

  • Donald Trump’s presidency
  • Immigration
  • Healthcare
  • Marijuana
  • International Affairs

Let’s talk: consequences, redistricting, implications for control of Congress, the presidency, presidential-congressional relations, Supreme Court, and myriad public policies.

If you want to discuss these or other issues and to understand the importance of the midterm elections, we will see you at What’s at Stake on the Sixth.

Learn to Communicate Across the Political Divide with the Better Angels Workshop

A Democracy Augsburg Workshop

Blog post by Emily Braverman  Poster: Better Angels Workshop

“Political ideology” is a term used frequently by political activists, students, and generally by anyone who considers themselves a political enthusiast. What exactly does it mean? Simply put, it is a term describing a person’s political views.

As a myriad of recent examples from American politics display, when diverging political ideologies collide the result is not necessarily respectful or peaceful. Even some of the most qualified politicians have not mastered the skill of respectfully engaging in conversation with those who have a different political ideology.

In response to this challenging reality, The Sabo Center is partnering with Better Angels to offer a workshop where participants will learn effective ways to communicate with others who differ from them politically. Better Angels is a national citizens movement that aims to reduce political polarization in the United States by bringing together liberals and conservatives to understand each other beyond stereotypes, to form red/blue community alliances, to teach practical skills for communicating across political differences, and to make a strong public argument for depolarization.

Come join The Sabo Center for a fish bowl-style discussion in which an equal number of self-declared conservatives and progressives join together in conversation about their differences and how to embrace each other’s side:

Wednesday, October 17, 3:30pm – 5:30pm, Old Main Room 105.

 

Relational Skills for Bridging Divides

How to Talk Across the Political Divide, a Better Angels Skills WorkshopIn our current climate of political polarization, people with differing perspectives and opinions struggle to engage in productive conversation. We tend to be quick to defend or demonize, deepening the divide that exists in the American people. Even when we want to reach out to those with different perspectives, we often don’t know how.

In response to these issues, the Sabo Center with the Civic Studies Fellows is offering this day-long workshop will feature a morning Better Angels skill-building session in which participants will learn effective ways to communicate with others who differ from them politically or ideologically. Over lunch, Dr. William J. Doherty will deliver a keynote address. Bill Doherty is an educator, researcher, therapist, speaker, author, consultant, and community organizer who designed the Better Angels process.

In the afternoon participants will practice their communication skills in deliberative dialogues on topics including:

  • How to Prevent Mass Shootings in the United States
  • Land of Plenty: How to Ensure People Have the Food They Need
  • Shaping Our Future: The Purpose of Higher Education
  • Making Ends Meet: How Should We Spread Prosperity?
  • What Should We Do About the Opioid Epidemic?
Bill Doherty, Facilitator for Better Angels Workshops
Bill Doherty, Facilitator for Better Angels Workshops

Relational Skills for Bridging Divides

Saturday, November 3, 2018

9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

Hagfors Center, Augsburg University

 

Thanks to support from Augsburg University and the Kettering Foundation, there is no cost to attend this event but registration is required.