Freedom Center Assistantships

Facilitate reflection and inspire change | October 17, 2005

Since its proposal by the National Conference for Community and Justice in 1994, the creators of the National Underground Freedom Center have taken to heart a common vision: We are a safehouse for dialogue and a beacon of freedom for all people. In line with that vision, the 158,000 square-foot Freedom Center offers its visitors a unique experience called the Dialogue Zone on the third floor of the structure.

Visiting the Freedom Center can stir emotions, challenge assumptions and raise questions. To aid discussion, several Xavier Psy.D students are awarded assistantships each year to serve in the Dialogue Zone as carefully trained facilitators.

Last year, under the guidance of Dr. Cathy McDaniels Wilson, Director of Dialogue for the Freedom Center and Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychology at Xavier, four students were able to help visitors reflect and learn more about the issues presented throughout the many exhibits at the Center. Over the summer and during this academic year, six additional students have been given a similar opportunity at the Freedom Center.

Dr. McDaniels-Wilson was dedicated to develop an assistantship for our students “to make sure an experience was created to learn about conflict resolution and intergroup communication. I also wanted to create a program which would impact the community in a positive way.”

Congratulations are owed to Dr. McDaniels-Wilson and to 2005-06 Graduate Assistants, Melissa Buchholz, Haviva Epstein, Kelly Firesheets, Stephanie Ridel, Clara Schroeder, and Tracey King.