What is the Restorative Practices Network?

The Restorative Practices Network (RPN) is composed of trained staff and faculty working to support the use of restorative principles and practices at NDSU. RPN aims to provide proactive strategies to build a sense of community, encourage relationships building, and promote belonging.

RPN is a means to improve the experience and environment for students, faculty, and staff by using restorative practices to proactively:

  1. Increase our ability to respond to harmful incidents in our community
  2. Improve the campus climate by increasing opportunity for collaboration and dialogue
  3. Create space for difficult conversations

RPN works to achieve these goals by hosting regular proactive talking circles, designed to offer safe, inclusive, and welcoming spaces on-campus to build community, engage with others, and learn together.

RPN also hosts, by request, responsive talking circles for campus groups who have experienced harm or as a means of providing community members a safe space to process local or national events.

What is a Talking Circle?

Based in Indigenous practices, Talking Circles provide a safe, open space for community members to speak about their lived experiences on a specific topic. All talking circles are led by trained facilitators.

How do talking circles work?
  1. Chairs are placed in a circle to create an open space for dialogue
  2. Each circle has one or more facilitators, traditionally referred to as circle keepers. Circle keepers are trained to ensure the circle process is followed and are full participants in the conversation.
  3. A centerpiece is placed inside the circle along with values and guidelines as place of focus.
  4. A talking piece (an object that has a significance to the subject or people in circle) will be passed around. The person holding the talking piece is the only person who speaks while the rest of the group actively listens.
How to request an RPN Circle?

Fill out this brief form and a member of the Restorative Practices Network will contact you.

Contact Information

For questions or more information please contact ndsu.rpn@ndsu.edu.

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