Day of Discovery & Dialogue to focus on finding common ground

Third annual universitywide event to be held Feb. 22-23

The Washington University in St. Louis community will come together to reflect upon its efforts to become more diverse and inclusive at its third annual Day of Discovery & Dialogue, to be held Wednesday and Thursday, Feb. 22 and 23.

This year’s event focuses on “Finding Common Ground,” with the intention of creating opportunities for members of the university community to learn more about each other,  to gain a deeper understanding of the challenges individuals from different backgrounds face, and to explore the ways we can help each other feel more welcome, secure and included.


The dialogue begins on Wednesday evening with a keynote address by Janice Mirikitani, a poet, dancer, activist and educator who, along with her family, was “forcibly relocated” to a Japanese-American internment camp in the 1940s. Mirikitani’s talk, which is free and open to the public, takes place at 5 p.m. in the Eric P. Newman Education Center on the Medical Campus.

Events scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 23, all of which will be held in the Emerson Auditorium and Frick Forum in Knight Hall on the Danforth Campus unless otherwise noted, include:

  • 8:30 a.m. — Welcome and opening remarks
  • 8:45 a.m. — “Forging a Collaborative Path for Inclusion and Change in St. Louis: The Role of Higher Education,” panel discussion featuring regional college and university leaders
  • 10:30 a.m. — “The Impact of Class,” faculty panel discussion based on excerpts from the PBS film “People Like Us: Social Class in America
  • Noon — Lunch discussion, facilitated small group sessions
  • 1:30 p.m. — “A Mosaic of True Stories,” interactive activity in which participants recount the real, though anonymously told, experiences of Washington University students, staff and faculty in short monologues (Submit your story here)
  • 2:45 p.m. — “Mapping Our Narratives: Visions of Identity,” an opportunity for members of the community to share their name and story through a visual mapping of their identity
  • 4:30 p.m. — Closing reflections
  • 6:30 p.m.— Refreshments (ice cream, popcorn and candy) in Tisch Commons, Danforth University Center
  • 7 p.m. — Film screening, “People Like Us: Social Class in America,” Tisch Commons

A complete listing of events is available on the WashU Voices website, where participants are strongly encouraged to register to attend events.

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