Cuesta College is launching a new effort to engage the community in discussions on socially relevant topics through a series of listening sessions called ‘Deeper Dialogues.’ The goal is to bring individuals together who have differences of opinion and create a safe place for open, honest idea and belief sharing.

“We want to create new possibilities for community building,” said Cuesta College Human Development/Human Services Instructor Bailey Drechsler, who helped organize ‘Deeper Dialogues.’

“Respecting each other’s differences does not mean abandoning your convictions. We think that developing the ability to listen to and consider opposing points of view make us stronger, more capable of working together, and able to build better communities. We hope the public joins Cuesta College as we work toward creating meaningful civic engagement with ‘Deeper Dialogues.’”

The first session will focus on gun ownership and neighborhood safety.

“Given the recent local and national attention on the topics of guns and community safety, we felt an urgency to create a respectful space for folks to come together and hear one another's perspectives,” said Drechsler. “The discussion is not meant to be a debate, but an opportunity to cultivate respect and civility while discussing the complicated topic of gun ownership.”

There are two opportunities for the public to take part in the upcoming ‘Deeper Dialogues’:

‘Deeper Dialogues’ will take place four times per year; twice in the Spring semester, and twice in the Fall. Each session will be facilitated by Drechsler and Cuesta College Dean of Workforce and Economic Development Dr. John Cascamo. The series is sponsored by Cuesta College’s Applied Behavioral Sciences Division and the Cuesta College Cultural Center. For more information on ‘Deeper Discussions, call Drechsler at (805) 546-3100, ext. 2644.