Better Together ND

What is Better Together ND? 

BetterTogether ND is a relational interfaith leadership development program offered through the Center for Social Concerns. Open to all students who are interested in interfaith cooperation, developing leadership skills, spending a semester/academic year sharing meals, time, and learning together. 

Interfaith cooperation is a movement in which participants come from diverse religious and non-religious identities working together for the common good. The movement for interfaith cooperation is open to all those that believe in this vision, including those that identity as agnostic, atheist, or secular humanist (referred to as “non-religious”). Breaking down the walls between religious and non-religious communities is vital to truly engaging religious diversity and building a world of equal dignity and mutual loyalty.

Better Together: Bridging the Gap (BTG)
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The past 4 years have been filled with a cluster of emotions. Each day we understand the continued polarization within our nation. The Bridging the Gap program, offered through partnership with IFYC (Interfaith Youth Core) offers classroom learning on communication skills across political, cultural, religious, worldview and experiential differences, a cross campus exchange between many students with very different profiles to practice these skills and visit with numerous stakeholders on a public policy issue that is agreed upon and decided by everyone involved.

Through these direct engagements and experiences, and consideration of catholic social teaching (CST) as a helpful lens, the program will teach students how to truly listen, understand, be heard, and seek common ground without attempting to change minds or having to compromise deeply held values. Moreover, this is not an effort to dismiss the deep and genuine divides in our country. Rather, it is a concrete step to give students - our country’s future leaders - the tools to find areas of common ground, create constructive tension, reflect on their own experiences, understand our shared humanity and solve pressing problems with those of different backgrounds and beliefs with whom we share this country. 

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


The one-credit course is made up of an early 3-day on campus retreat, 5 weekly sessions, and a final legislative advocacy project culminating the week before spring break. The course will meet on Thursdays 6:00–8:00 p.m. and maxes at 15 students for the cohort.

Any questions please contact Melissa Marley Bonnichsen - and consider applying through the link below. 




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Upcoming Events

May 2022

Graduate Summer Institute for Engaged Research and Teaching
Tuesday, May 31, 2022 - 12:00am to Thursday, June 2, 2022 - 11:45pm

June 2022

ND Explores STEM: Healthcare
Friday, June 3, 2022 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm
Information Session | RISE: Hometown
Thursday, June 9, 2022 - 7:00pm
Preferred Application Deadline | Graduate Fellowship
Wednesday, June 15, 2022 - 12:00am to 11:45pm
Information Session | RISE: South Bend
Thursday, June 16, 2022 - 7:00pm

September 2022

Pathways Out of Poverty: Venture Creation and Contemporary Europe
Wednesday, September 7, 2022 - 11:00am to 1:00pm