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Student Read, Student Written, Student Led Since 1878

The Knox Student

Student Read, Student Written, Student Led Since 1878

The Knox Student

Student Read, Student Written, Student Led Since 1878

The Knox Student

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Day of Dialogue, Knox’s Flunk Day for the soul

The Day of Dialogue is my second favorite Knox annual event, only after our Flunk Day, because they both connect people together. Flunk Day connects us by having fun; the Day of Dialogue connects us by having discussions about our differences.

Usually scheduled after winter midterms, Day of Dialogue is a day where Knox students, faculty, and staff can engage in meaningful conversations. This year’s Day of Dialogue was on Feb. 7. In the discussions, people can talk about anything and share their thoughts in a safe haven that respects their differences.

My first Day of Dialogue was in early 2021 while I was a first-year, during Covid-19. I was surprised by the open-minded professors in my discussion group that when disagreed with by students, sometimes changed their ideas. Although everything was online and separated by a screen, I fell in love with this day.

This year, the Day of Dialogue opened with a speech at 10 am. After that, students had the choice to either attend keynotes or discussion.

The Day of Dialogue Discussion At Kresge (Yuchen Wang)

I loved the idea of opening up about our differences in an age of polarization, and I attended the discussion in the Lincoln room without a doubt.

The discussion groups were between five to seven people and we sat at round tables. Each table has at least two professors and staff, with expertise ranging from physics to each branch of student services. There were also two facilitators at each table, who may be students or staff.

Day of Dialogue also offered another unique opportunity for me: to meet people that I would not get to know otherwise. I am a shy person, and I do not usually befriend people unless it is for specific reasons. But, on this day, I have the perfect excuse to sit next to people I did not know and get to know them and their thoughts.

The Discussion At Lincoln Room, with professors, staff, and students.

So I found a table I knew the least people at, and began the discussion. After a round of introductions, I found that for just seven people, we displayed a wide range of experiences and interests. I am a creative writing major with the interests of becoming a journalist. Next to me was a freshman business major that wants to be a lawyer. Our student facilitator was an Anthropology major.

But at the same time, I can draw so many similarities as well. I am an immigrant that came to the State when I was twelve. The girl next to me was an immigrant from Indonesia when she was in high school, and our facilitator was a California native, which is where I resided before I came to Knox.

My favorite part of the discussion was when we talked about liberation, and whether we are still liberated while others are being oppressed. We were all encouraged to bring our experiences to the table, and for that moment, there were no secrets between us. Everyone was so respectful and no interruption ever occurred. No questions were too stupid and no experiences are not worth sharing. Everyone will empathize with each other’s struggles.

For example, when one person in my group expressed concerns of an imposter-like syndrome coming from a privileged background, I immediately jumped in, sharing a similar situation that I experienced when I was a sophomore, and how writing to my professor about it helped ease my concern, and offered a healthy way of looking at a privileged background is to “pay it forward” by helping someone else. Others in my group quickly jumped in, sharing their views and words of encouragement and wisdom.

Three hours passed very quickly, and I was sad to see my second favorite event come to an end. I think the reason that I liked this discussion so much was because we were thinking about something beyond ourselves, and the reason that we can sympathize with each other is because no differences can trump our greatest similarities: we are all Knox College.

I walked away from the Day of Dialogue differently. I was recharged, and ready to tackle the next part of the term. If Flunk Day is a day of entertainment, then Day of Dialogue is a day for the betterment of our soul.

So, if you are shy and want to meet new people, or discuss issues that meant a lot to you, I encourage you to attend this incredible event at Knox College. From the first time that I attended this event, I was always enlightened and glad that I am part of this wonderful community!

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About the Contributor
Yuchen Wang, Radio Editor
Yuchen Wang '25 (he/him) is the radio editor at TKS. He is a creative writing major and a computer science minor. In his free time, he likes to listen to classical music and read books.

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