Educators: Highlights From the National Skillshare Series

Educators Community of Practice

A community for student leaders, campus educators, human resources specialists, and student affairs professionals to explore promising practices in providing education to the campus community regarding gender-based violence.

With thanks to the Educators Community of Practice members: Belinda Karsen, Britt Harvey, Dee Dooley, Emily Colpitts, Jacob DesRochers, Robyn Wilson, Roxanne Runyon, Johannah May Black, Sarah Crawford, Roza Nozari, and Laurie Fradette-Drouin.

With thanks to the Educators Community of Practice Project Consultant, Emily Livingston.

Tool: “Navigating Power Dynamics and Boundaries as a Graduate Student” Peer-Facilitated Workshop

The Educators Community of Practice has developed a peer-facilitated workshop that will help graduate students develop practical skills around navigating power dynamics in academia and setting boundaries for healthy relationships. Our tool is designed to reflect the lived realities of diverse graduate student populations including those who identify as 2SLGBTQ+, BIPOC, and others that may be at an elevated risk of sexual and gender-based violence. Most existing programs are tailored to more traditional undergraduate student populations and may not be as applicable to the lived reality of graduate students and the multiple roles they often hold on campus. We include discussions on power, consent, and coercion and how these dynamics may manifest within the academic environment.  We want our participants to feel empowered in setting boundaries and to feel comfortable responding when a boundary violation does occur.

This highly interactive workshop is 3 hours in length and will be led by two graduate student facilitators. Our tool is designed to be adaptable for PSI’s across the country. While we have included talking points for each content area, we also have left space for PSI’s to include information specific to their institution such as campus resources and supports.

National Skillshare Presentation

Watch the presentation and download the full transcript below or on our Education page.

Download the transcript here.

Top Questions from the Skillshare Presentation:

1. What are ways to get institutions to diversify sexual violence based prevention efforts to include, and specifically create content/support/workshops for and including grad students?

Many PSI initiatives are data driven, making it essential for schools to recognize the unique position and experience of graduate students in order to offer programming like our tool. Some reports, like the University of Manitoba campus climate survey or data from the Canadian Federation of Students Ontario report findings specific to the graduate student experience. However, most institutional research tends to focus on only undergraduate students, or report summary findings on all students without distinguishing between program levels like undergraduate, graduate, or professional programs. Having a clear understanding of the issues graduate students are experiencing and how these issues are unique from undergraduate students can help generate buy-in for these more tailored programs.

Having a tool like ours available from Courage to Act can also be helpful, as it provides institutions with a starting point rather than having to create a new program from scratch. Our tool can be customized to include resources and information specific to your PSI.

2. I struggle with the Institution giving us more than an hour for training. How do you suggest working to make it either longer or shortening the session?

Time commitments are often a concern for all training and it can be very hard to adequately cover content in shorter time frames. We wanted to ensure that we were giving participants adequate time to fully engage in each topic, and include ample time for self-care breaks given the emotional impact that content related to gender-based violence and sexual violence can have. We have designed our tool to be 3 hours in length, but facilitators could choose to remove or limit discussions around certain topics in order to condense the material further.


Suggested Citation: Educators. (2021, February). Educators Community of Practice: Highlights from the National Skillshare Series Presentation. Courage to Act.


Educators Community of Practice

Learn more about the Educators Community of P













Related news