Deliberation Nation brings together students, community to discuss social issues

February 14, 2019

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — For the fifth year, Penn State first-year honors students are inviting the community to join them for Deliberation Nation, a series of deliberative discussions about local, national and global issues of significance and urgency.

As part of the Rhetoric and Civic Life course offered as a first-year seminar through the College of the Liberal Arts, students host more than 50 opportunities for town and gown to engage together in serious conversations that challenge participants to reflect on the values that shape their decision-making on important topics of the day — from binge drinking on campuses to climate change.

Different in goals and structure from debate, deliberation is group conversation that seeks to find common ground. It invites participants to think through problems and weigh the costs and benefits of various approaches to addressing those problems, and invites reflection about the values that drive our choices.

The event runs from Feb.18-28. Deliberations will take place in various downtown and campus locations and are open to the public. For specifics on days, times, locations and topics, visit

Rhetoric and Civic Life is an honors course offered jointly through the Departments of English and Communication Arts and Sciences and is available to students from the Paterno Fellows Program, Schreyer Honors College and Millennium Scholars. The course is sponsored by the Center for Democratic Deliberation in the McCourtney Institute for Democracy. To learn more about the course, visit

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated February 15, 2019