Common Ground Goals and Objectives

Year One: 2012-2013

  • Teach 220 students best practices for social and environmental change.
  • Mentor 2 to 4 students in creating their own initiatives for change.
  • Nurture a culture of engaged conversation at UCSC through:
    • Hosting three campus-wide dialogues attracting 500 students, 50 Santa Cruz community members, 10 faculty and 10 upper-level campus administration;
    • Hosting a weekly dialogue and dinner that provides a training ground for student leadership in group process and facilitation.
  • Develop a vibrant social network and email list with over 1,000 subscribers.
  • Sponsor 1 to 2 student-directed seminars.
  • Develop a Speaker’s Series consisting of University and community members who reflect the values and approach of our Center.
  • Present about the Center and our projects at 2 major conferences.
  • Form an institutional partnership with Bioneers, and offer a scholarship to bring 30 students and faculty to the annual 3-day Bioneers Conference.**
  • Place 1 to 2 of our graduates in positions of leadership at the nation’s most effective, innovative and visionary organizations.
  • Mentor and teach a course for 24 students living on the same residence hall floor based on Nonviolent Communication.

Year Two: 2013-14

  • Continue goals from previous year.
  • Initiate a Kresge College themed housing option called “Harmony Hall,” for living and learning the principles and practices of Restorative Justice and Nonviolent Communication.
  • Organize and host a day long Restorative Justice Conference.
  • Initiate a themed housing option at Kresge College called “Kresge EcoVillage,” for living and learning the principles and practices of agroecology, sustainable food systems, permaculture design, and nature awareness.***
  • Teach a two quarter sequence class on Permaculture and Whole Systems Design.
  • Host a California Student Sustainability Coalition Convergence.****
  • Present about the Center and our projects at 2 to 4 major conferences.
  • Create and maintain a rich partnership network.
  • Place 2 to 4 of our graduates in positions of leadership at the nation’s most effective, innovative, and visionary organizations.

Year Three: 2014-15 

  • Continue goals from previous years.
  • Pilot a partnership with Bioneers to offer a three quarter sequence class at UC Santa Cruz that builds on the Center's existing programs and coursework in ecology, economy, and equity. The goal of the course is to connect students with leaders from business, politics and civil society offering transformative solutions to major social problems. The course ties together three existing programs of the Center into an integrated curriculum for transformative learning: a speaker series (lecture), a World Café style dialogue (discussion section), and community action-research teams (lab).

Year Four: 2015-2016

  • Continue goals from previous years.
  • Pilot a collaboration with the California Student Sustainability Coalition to replicate the Bioneers partnership class at other institutions for higher learning in California. 

Year Five: 2016-2017

  • Continue goals from previous years.
  • Publish a dossier based on the action-research and educational work of the Center.

** The Bioneers Conference is held annually on the third weekend of October at the Marin Civic Center in San Rafael, California. The Bioneers Conference was founded in 1990. Common Ground faculty member Dave Shaw hosted three World Cafes at the Conference in 2011, and will again in 2012. Additionally, Dave has formed a partnership with the Bioneers Education For Action program to bring 30 students and faculty to the Conference on scholarship. For more information on Bioneers, visit www.bioneers.org.

*** Student leaders from the existing Kresge Garden Co-op will support with residential, curricular and co-curricular activities in “the Garden House.” See http://kresgegardencoop.weebly.com/ for more information on the Co-op.

**** “Founded in 2003, the California Student Sustainability Coalition is a network of thousands of students that are actively influencing key decisions and policies of California’s Universities, communities and governments.” (http://www.facebook.com/sustainabilitycoalition/info). CSSC student volunteers organize an annual Convergence that brings together over 100 students from across California and beyond. We seek to host them at Kresge College in 2013-2014. For more information on CSSC, visit http://www.sustainabilitycoalition.org.