Interfaith Professional Development for Faculty, Staff, & Community
The Virginia Tech Interfaith Program promoted in Spring 2021 the Interfaith Professional Development Series, a semester-long eight-session program aimed to expand understanding of the diversity of religious and non-religious identities on campus among faculty, staff, and community members. The goal was to better support students and build competency and capacity to engage in interfaith dialogue and cooperation on campus.
The course was developed in the virtual environment, with bi-weekly synchronous meetings and asynchronous assignments via Canvas, through the Professional Development Network (TLOS). The workshops covered:
(a) Relevance of worldview engagement and interfaith cooperation for higher education
(b) Awareness of religious diversity in the U.S. and of diverse worldviews identities on campus
(c) Interfaith literacy, building knowledge and capacity to interact across lines of difference as key work and life skills
(d) Experiential activities and personal reflection on identities, values, and biases
(e) Reading Group on the book Educating about Religious Diversity and Interfaith Engagement (Goodman et al., 2019)
Promoted by the Virginia Tech Interfaith Program in partnership with PDN-TLOS and with the support from a Campus Innovation Grant from the Interfaith Youth Core, the professional development program built upon the strong university’s culture around service and work for the common good. Thirty five faculty, staff, and community members who completed the Interfaith Professional Development Program were certified and received the badge “Interfaith & Worldview Diversity“. As part of the project, we organized an Interfaith Online Repository with several resources available.
Instructors and course developers: Dr. Najla Mouchrek, Dr. Amanda Armstrong, Laura McCullough
Guest Speakers: Dr. J. Cody Nielsen, Caroline Connell
Interfaith & Worldview Diversity
The Interfaith & Worldview Diversity Badge represents acknowledgement of the relevance of worldview engagement and interfaith cooperation in higher education; awareness and support of worldview diversity on campus; pursuit of interfaith literacy to build knowledge and capacity to interact across lines of difference and support students from diverse religious and non-religious identities.
Earning Criteria: Attended and completed the semester-long Interfaith Professional Develop Program promoted by the Virginia Tech Interfaith Program with the support from the Interfaith Youth Core, in partnership with TLOS- Professional Development Network.