University of Florida Department of Housing and Residence Education is a featured program.
The Department of Housing and Residence Education at the University of Florida is committed to building socially just and inclusive communities for residents and staff. We seek to make concepts of social justice and diversity a routine part of decision making within the housing operation in order to work towards the elimination of social inequality.
Social Justice Programming
Annually, the department supports two major social justice programs – Tunnel of Oppression and Writing on the Wall.
Tunnel of Oppression is an experiential exposure program to help students understand the perspectives and personal life narratives of underrepresented groups and oppressed identities.
Writing on the Wall allows students to express hurtful language used against them or that they have spoken towards others on a physical block wall in a central plaza on campus. After a one week display, the wall is torn down symbolically and physically after a ceremony explaining the project during mid-day class change.
Social Justice Education and Conflict Resolution
The Department employs a Coordinator of Social Justice Education (CSJE), whom advises the Peer Advocates for Social Justice & Conflict Resolution.
The Peer Advocates serve as peer educators and programmers within social justice as well as formal peer mediators for roommate conflicts. They are trained in advanced social justice concepts as well as formal mediation and restorative justice.
The CSJE also monitors and enhances staff programming toward residents, updates the research grounded programming, education, and training model, updates the Social Justice Library, and serves on multiple social justice related campus committees.
Our departmental philosophy is a belief that conflict is often caused by misunderstanding of values, beliefs, and identities. To mediate conflicts without regard for identity, values, and beliefs would be irresponsible.
Submitted by Chris Anderson, Graduate Hall Director and Nikki Steinburger, Student Learning and Engagement Graduate Assistant, University of Florida