Bridgebuilding

Bridging the Gap

Accepting Schools for Fall 2022 and Winter 2023

Bridging the Gap Trailer

Information

Program

The Bridging the Gap program is designed to combat the toxic polarization in our country, give students the skills they need to find common ground across deep divides, solve problems in their communities, thrive in the workplace of the future, and support students in their own character formation journey.

Approach

A cross-campus exchange between one or more schools to practice these solution-oriented life skills and hear from voices of a broad range of stakeholders on a chosen policy topic. Through these direct engagements and experiences, the program endeavors to teach students how to truly listen, understand, be heard, and seek common ground — without comprising deeply held values.

  • Why Now?

    The Challenge

    There is a growing story in America telling us that we are isolated, that we do not talk to each other anymore, that all we do is call each other out on social media, and that we are destroying the art of conversation — and the country — along the way.

    Higher Education

    The story tells us that this crisis is even more acute in higher education. We have partnered with 14 schools to see just how bad it is. We saw that there are certainly serious problems within campus culture, but the priceless lesson we took home is that students want something more.

    The Findings

    Students do not want watered-down compromises or half-hearted solutions. They want transformation for themselves, for our communities, for the country, and for the future. They are ready for it, and if we invest in them, they will turn this country around.

  • In Practice

    Who can participate in Bridging the Gap?

    As long as there is a commitment from the top, any accredited college or university in the United States is eligible to participate in Bridging The Gap.

    How many campuses have been involved?

    11 campuses have run the Bridging the Gap program so far, and we anticipate partnering with 20 more in the year ahead.

Core Theory and Media Recognition

  • Can Deep Listening Heal Our Divisions?

    For bridge-builders in the U.S. the way forward is to engage deeply across lines of difference. Bridging The Gap (BTG) founder, Simon Greer, explores bridgebuilding skills and their relevance to our country.

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  • Gap Bridgers: Teaching Skills to Cross Lines of Difference

    This Journal of College and Character article highlights experiences from the 2020 Bridging the Gap (BTG) pilot program and provides an in-depth description of the BTG approach and methodology.

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  • Is There a Way to Dial Down the Political Hatred?

    Molly Worthen, opinion writer at The New York Times, examines Bridging The Gap through the lens of a former program participant.

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Bridgebuilding

More Than Talk

Interviews with Bridging the Gap leaders and participants

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Contact Us

Connect by email to express interest, ask questions, or share thoughts.

Tina Grace

Program Coordinator

Interfaith America

What Are Participants Saying About the Program?

Our initial program evaluations show that participants increased their ability to listen to others they disagree with. We look forward to additional impact evaluation as the program grows. Here are some reflections from past participants:

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