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Chat Cafe Leaders are students who are interested in developing skills in leading intercultural conversations, learning more about language acquisition, and getting to know international and multilingual students at U of M. Chat Cafe Leaders enroll in the 1-credit Writing 302: Global Communication: Rhetorical Approaches to Multilingual Conversation and facilitate weekly group meetings with 5-6 participants. Sweetland Chat Cafe provides international and multilingual students an opportunity to improve their spoken English in a relaxed environment.

How to Become a Chat Cafe Leader

Students who have successfully completed Writing 300 automatically qualify to enroll in Writing 302 and do not need to complete an application. If you would like to learn more or join this program, please notify Michael Zakalik, Sweetland’s Undergraduate Program Coordinator

Students who have not completed Writing 300 are encouraged to apply. Click the Writing 302 Application button below and fill out the online application form. If selected, you will be granted permission to enroll in the class. In consultation with the instructor, you will arrange a regular time for your weekly Chat Cafe members to meet. If you would like to learn more, email Michael Zakalik, Sweetland’s Undergraduate Program Coordinator

Global Communication: Rhetorical Approaches to Multilingual Conversation

This course prepares students to lead Chat Cafe groups with multilingual undergraduates. Among the topics to be considered are seeking clarification, taking a position, celebrating successes and overcoming nervousness, approaching different communicative contexts, engaging in casual conversation, and using social media. Students in this course lead weekly conversation groups beginning in the second week of the semester. Students also observe one other Chat Cafe group and develop a creative outreach project that builds upon bi-weekly blog posts.

Course Requirements

Facilitation of eleven weekly Chat Cafe sessions. One observational visit to a colleague’s Chat Cafe. Regular attendance and active participation in weekly class sessions. Six bi-weekly blog posts reflecting on your experiences as a Chat Cafe leader and on the topics covered in class. “Cultural richness” creative capstone project.

Intended Audience

Sweetland Peer Writing Consultants, students interested in international relations, tutoring, and cross-cultural communication.

Class Format

This course meets for 1 hour per week, with outside conversation group meetings scheduled outside of class.

Chat Cafe Facilitator Experiences

Costa, Chat Cafe Facilitator, 2016-17
Prachi, Chat Cafe Facilitator, 2016-18
Carina, Chat Cafe Facilitator, 2017-18
Sarah, Chat Cafe Facilitator, 2016 (and current Production Assistant at Michigan Public Radio)