Intercultural Engagement

Cultivating ‘brave spaces’ in which students can effectively challenge themselves and others, practice vulnerability, and listen to understand rather than to respond.

The Dean of Students Office aims to leverage demographic diversity in the student body to create a pluralistic and inclusive college community, in which all students are able to openly express the multiple social and personal identities they hold. By encouraging critical inquiry and bold conversations, we empower students to authentically engage with the varied perspectives and lived experiences of fellow community members.


The program encourages authentic intercultural engagement which involves asking difficult questions and grappling with difference. The Dean of Students Office designs co-curricular programming in collaboration with faculty and staff on campus to help students:

  • build self-awareness and empathy through active listening, story sharing, and reflection
  • critically examine power and privilege dynamics within intersectional and contextual identities
  • navigate within and between cultural contexts and engage conflict through dialogue and discussion
  • create positive impact within communities they feel connected to

Our sustained curriculum-based programming complements the academic curriculum and facilitates learning outside the classroom to bridge the gap between intellectual inquiry and personal sharing. Campus life programming fosters curiosity and compassion; encourages free expression; creates ‘brave’ spaces for open and honest dialogue on campus; and engages conflict as an opportunity for personal growth and social change.  Intercultural engagement is essential for an ethically enriching student experience that readily combines intellectual curiosity and personal experience to prepare compassionate global leaders who will bring positive change not only in Asia, but wherever they go in the world.

Our programming includes:

    • Intergroup Dialoguea curriculum-based 8-week dialogue program focusing on identity and intergroup communication. More information here.
    • CSI Dialogue Seriesa space for sharing personal stories relating to CSI lectures/seminars/readings beyond the classroom.
    • Intercultural Peer Advisor Program – apply to be an Intercultural Peer Advisor to make positive change on campus. More information here.
    • Makan Makan Food Outingsexploring personal connections to place through food and stories.
    • Table Topicscreating meaningful conversations in everyday spaces. Keep an eye out for topics in the dining hall and get a chance to win a Starbucks card.
    • ‘Food from Home’ – bring a part of home to campus through food and cooking. Apply for ‘Food from Home’ funding if you would like to cook/buy back ‘home food’ to share with the Yale-NUS community. Find the funding form here.
    • Diversity Week – A week-long programme engaging all members of the community in celebrating our collective diversity, engaging in dialogues pertaining to themes of identity, power and privilege, and furthering our commitment to strengthened inclusion and belonging in the community. More information here.

You can also come to us for:

  • Funding/ideas for events relating to diversity, identity, and culture
  • Advising on cultural adjustment and identity development
  • Training on group facilitation and team development
  • Resources regarding identity and diversity