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We understand that sometimes prospective students can become cynical about what a college campus will really be like when it comes to interacting with other students and connecting with one's own cultural community.
The truth is that Dartmouth really does attract faculty and students from many different backgrounds who end up living, working and learning together on a residential campus in a great college town where life in the classroom overlaps with life outside of the classroom.
The result? At Dartmouth, you will find a community where you can connect with others who share your cultural background and interests, but you will also get to know others whose backgrounds and interests are completely different from your own. Sometimes, this experience will feel comforting. At other times, it might feel challenging. No matter what, there will be people and resources here to help support students and strengthen connections.
There are over 40 student-run organizations with ties to a specific cultural community at Dartmouth. These include student groups that celebrate cultural heritage, that advocate political positions, that perform and explore certain arts traditions, and that publish or produce media from a particular cultural perspective. Many of these groups are connected to and supported by an advisor from the Office of Pluralism and Leadership (OPAL), while others operate more independently.
Interested students can choose to live in one of the 14 residential affinity programs, many of which promote awareness and appreciation of a specific cultural or ethnic tradition. In these small learning-based communities, students make a commitment to engage with one another around the theme of the program and to participate in events throughout the academic term.
Throughout the year student groups, OPAL, and the the Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity (IDE) sponsor events that celebrate the rich cultural diversity at Dartmouth and that welcome many visitors to Dartmouth's campus. One of the College's signature annual events, Dartmouth's Native American Pow Wow, attracts over 1,500 people from all over the country who share traditions from many tribes and reinforce the importance of Dartmouth's founding mission.