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FSU to Hold “Sustaining Campus and Community” Dialogue Series
02/28/2012

Building on an increasingly cooperative spirit in Frostburg, Frostburg State University will hold a “Sustaining Campus and Community” Dialogue Series, with sessions held in downtown Frostburg and on the FSU campus.

The hope is that the dialogues will foster a spirit of collaborative problem-solving and coalition-building that supports continuous dialogue across the campus and the surrounding community in support of improved communication, conflict management and violence prevention education. The desired coalitions will be broad-based, consisting of members and leaders of the University and the city of Frostburg, with representation from various groups and affiliations. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Two top scholar-practitioners in conflict resolution will offer their expertise to FSU partners organizing the dialogues: Dr. Frank Dukes, lecturer and director of the Institute for Environmental Negotiation at the University of Virginia, and Dr. Marvin Johnson, founder and executive director of the Center for Alternative Dispute Resolution.

The following sessions, each with specific goals, will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month through May:

• Wednesday, March 7, Lyric Theatre, 20 E. Main St., Frostburg: This first dialogue will help determine stakeholders in the community, as well as celebrate strengths and explore existing tensions within the community.

• Wednesday, April 4, Lane University Center Manicur Assembly Hall on campus: Taking place during Enough Is Enough week, the national campaign to end campus violence, this dialogue will emphasize violence prevention and community conflict management. The focus of this dialogue will be on understanding perceptions and tensions within the student community, as well as between the year-round Frostburg residents and the student community. A greater understanding of what resources are available or needed for student and community conflict management will be a goal for this dialogue.

• Wednesday, May 2, Lyric Theatre: The dialogue concluding this spring series will focus on interpreting results from the first two dialogues and developing goals and plans for future dialogues or other constructive approaches to building community, resolving conflicts and preventing violence.

Refreshments will be served and additional resources will be available. All members of the campus and community are encouraged to attend.

The series is part of a continuing set of initiatives designed to help students and the community learn more about conflict management and violence prevention. Among them are the campus conversation event for students held last November, the new Conflict Communication Studies track that the Department of Communication Studies recently added, participation in the second national Enough Is Enough week-long anti-violence campaign in April, and the recent agreement between FSU and the city of Frostburg to share jurisdiction in the neighborhood surrounding the campus and provide funds to increase the staffing and pay rate for Frostburg City Police.

The series is made possible through generous support from the Mediation and Conflict Resolution Office in Maryland and with the assistance of FSU partners, including the Office of the President, Office of Human Resources, Diversity Center, Residence Life Office, Department of Communication Studies, Department of Philosophy and the Student Communication Studies Association. Community partner Mountainside Community Mediation Center will also offer support and services.

For more information on the series, contact Dr. Elesha L. Ruminski, chair of Communication Studies at FSU and president of MCMC’s board of directors, at elruminski@frostburg.edu or 301-687-4480. More information on MCMC can be found at www.mountainsidemediation.org, on Dr. Dukes at www.arch.virginia.edu/people/directory/frank-dukes and on Dr. Johnson at www.jamsadr.com/marvin-johnson.

FSU is committed to making all of its programs, services and activities accessible to persons with disabilities. To request accommodations through the ADA Compliance Office, call 301-687-4102 or use a Voice Relay Operator at 1-800-735-2258. -end-

For further information on this release, contact:

Office of News and Media Services
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD  21532-2303

Telephone: 301-687-3171
Fax: 301-687-7589
E-mail: news@frostburg.edu