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2016 Institute Proceedings

Student Activism & Advocacy: Higher Education’s Role in Fostering Ethical Leadership and Moral Commitment

For over 25 years the Jon C. Dalton Institute on College Student Values has promoted research, trends, and good practices related to the character and values development of college students. The annual meeting brings together administrators, faculty, researchers, and graduate students to explore scholarship and practice to effect change on our campuses.

College students have a rich history of advocating for change both on campus and in society. Colleges and universities navigate a fine line between empowering student voices and maintaining academic communities that are safe, civil, and welcoming. The 26thannual Dalton Institute will explore student advocacy and activism, and our role in leveraging this important piece of the student experience to encourage personal development and intellectual growth.

The following guiding questions can serve to help you prepare to attend the Institute, submit a program proposal, or continue your thinking about the dynamics of advocacy and activism in our work in higher education and beyond:

  • What is activism and how is it enacted by today’s college student?
  • What role have college students played historically in effecting change on their campuses, in their communities, and in the nation?
  • What is the role of faculty and administrators in supporting or controlling student activism and advocacy?
  • What roles do advocacy and activism play in civic life?
  • Should civic engagement and social action be intended outcomes of a postsecondary education?
  • How do advocacy and activism relate to the development of ethical leadership and moral commitment?
  • How do students learn to be advocates for individual, community, and social values?