Workshop updates form

Leave us your contact details to receive updates and workshop dates.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Leadership for Social & Systems Change: Facilitating Cultural Change

Facilitating Cultural Change (FCC) is an advanced 5 day in-person institute for practitioners of cultural, systemic, and transformational social change. If you are seeking a practical set of tools to support your ability to make that change, FCC is for you.

What is Facilitating Cultural Change and Why Should I Do It?

Facilitating Cultural Change (FCC) is an advanced 5 day in-person institute for practitioners of cultural, systemic, and transformational change towards the common good.

If you are seeking a practical set of tools to support your ability to make that change, FCC is for you.

FCC will equip you with a framework and skills to make lasting change towards your broader goals. FCC will give you access to expert practitioners, rigorous materials, a cohort of new colleagues and relationships, and the opportunity to reflect on your own experiences in new ways.

When you leave FCC, you will be able to apply new skills and tools to a broad and diverse range of organizations, institutions, networks, and social movements. FCC will help you to become a more confident, more effective, and more self-aware leader grounded in your deeper purpose and path.

Who Should Attend FCC?

  • You are a person who has a role (formally or informally) in facilitating change within organizations or educational institutions about diversity, inclusion, equity. and justice.
  • You are invested in deepening your sense of connection to yourself and the lived experience of others.
  • You are a leader in an organization or community navigating relationships, strategies, and communication regarding change-making.
    You want to learn models and skills to broaden and deepen your systemic impact, and/or…
  • You are a user of the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) who wants to deepen your practice utilizing the Intercultural Development Continuum (IDC) as a model to support facilitation and training towards racial equity and systemic change.

Over the course of five days, you will learn, practice, and reflect through facilitator-led content, experiential exercise, small group work, and more..

What included in the FCC Experience?

  • A pre-institute webinar providing an overview of the FCC experience and and introduction to key concepts.
  • Assessment utilizing the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) & a pre-FCC questionnaire.
  • 1:1 meeting with one of the FCC facilitators to review your IDI profile and receive support to set individualized concrete goals for your FCC experience.
    Suggested readings and podcasts to prepare for FCC.
  • 5 workshop days of in-person content, practice, facilitation, reflection, coaching, leadership development, and relationship building.
  • The FCC Participant Guide – over 100 pages of resources, tools, and templates to support application of the FCC learning.
  • 2 small group coaching sessions following the FCC Institute to support ongoing application of the material, including real-time problem-solving.

What Are the Details? Where? When? How?

The next Facilitating Cultural Change will take place June 10-14, 2024. 

Monday-Thursday (6/10-6/13/2024) we will meet in person 9:00 am – 4:30 pm
Friday (6/14/2024) 9:00 am – 2:00 pm

We will be in a multi modal, mobility accessible classroom with flexible seating options and abundant natural light in a downtown St. Paul location.

  • Facilitating Cultural Change will provide breakfast, lunch, snacks, and recommendations for dinner, accommodating participant’s dietary needs as much as possible.
  • We will provide a list of nearby hotels and ground transportation information.
  • Please contact us if you need additional assistance planning travel or lodging.

A Note about Pace and Learning Styles:

The agenda of the FCC Institute is full and fast paced.  Within the context of the agenda, we will do our best to accommodate various learning styles by using a mix of facilitation methodologies including lecture (utilizing powerpoint for visual learners), small and large group discussion, experiential and kinetic activities, spaces for reflection, and frequent Q&A sessions. As facilitators of cultural change, experimenting with different learning and facilitation styles, and managing a sense of discomfort with the learning process, is a necessary skill. While FCC is an excellent place to practice this skill, we recognize that the learning pace and style of FCC might not be optimal for everyone.  We encourage attendees to participate as fully as possible to get the most out of our work together, while taking care of your own needs.

The FCC Curriculum includes:

  • Grounding in a developmental model to support DEI learning and systems change
  • Applying a trauma informed lens to individual and organizational change
  • Engaging in constructive cross cultural conflict
  • Understand and managing individual and organizational change
  • Practicing leadership and facilitation skills
  • Countering micro-aggressions
  • Engaging and shifting dynamics of power
  • Transforming theory into practice through equity focused Action Learning
  • Strategies to build movements to bring social justice work to scale

If you have questions about the FCC learning environment and how it may suit you, please reach out to Athena at or Liz at

How Much Does it cost?

Your $3,000 investment includes:

  • An individual IDI profile
  • One-to-one IDI profile report and goal setting
  • 5 full day workshops
  • 2 small group coaching sessions
  • FCC Participant Guide with practical tools

Payment plans and a limited number of scholarships are available. If you need to discuss scholarship or payment plans, contact Beth at

*FCC registration is limited to 40 participants.

Who Are Your facilitators?

  • Beth Zemsky

    Beth Zemsky holding award at podium

    I bring over 35 years of experience, commitment and passion to my partnerships with organizations working towards social change and structural transformation including foundations, non-profits, educational, health, faith-based, and social change organizations. A few career highlights include serving as staff at OutFront MN, founding Director of the GLBT Programs Office at the University of Minnesota, co-chair of the Board of Directors of the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, Supervisor of the University of Minnesota Diversity Institute, Coordinator of Leadership… Read More

  • Athena Adkins

    “Who do we Choose to Be? This is the question that drives Athena and her work. Throughout her 20+ year career in the non-profit and philanthropic sector, her effort to leverage her experience and expertise and align her personal values with mission-driven organizations has led her to engage in deep, meaningful work at the intersection of organizational development and capacity building—where those ideas intersect with authentic leadership, intercultural organizational development, healing from trauma, and emotional intelligence. Essentially, she is a… Read More

  • Liz Loeb

    Liz Loeb (she/her) is a civil rights attorney, community organizer, and non-profit director who brings 25 years of high-level experience leading organizations in movements for social change. As a white, queer, Jewish woman, Liz knows that who we are shapes the work that we do. Liz believes in our shared interdependence, and seeks to address challenging issues with humor, compassion, and courage. A graduate of Brown University, Liz holds a law degree from NYU School of Law and has completed a Ph.D. in… Read More

FCC Community of Practice

FCC Community of Practice groups meet for ten (10) monthly sessions via Zoom for two (2) hours over the course of a year. In addition, 3 quarterly workshops sessions will be offered to bring all the FCC Community of Practice groups together for further advanced learning regarding leadership for social and systems change.

These intentionally small (10 people or less) groups will have a trained facilitator who has been part of the FCC faculty. The facilitator will serve like an “orchestra conductor” – knowing when to push for deeper discussion, encouraging multiple perspectives, and making sure everyone is heard – all while ensuring the group stays focused on its goals and timelines.

Below are some comments shared by participants in FCC CoP in 2022…

“I highly recommend FCC CoP! It was a great experience. I learned a lot. The CoP provided the opportunity for practitioners to share knowledge and concerns, ask questions and provide support in a safe space.”

“The FCC CoP is a unique space where the shared wisdom, expertise and support is incredibly powerful.”

“My experience in the FCC CoP allowed me to learn from other practitioners across sectors and geographies, expanding my professional network and my professional growth. It was an incredibly valuable experience!”

“My FCC CoP helped me dig deeper into my own skills, assumptions, and practice of facilitating cultural change in a supportive and inspiring peer group.”

All applications will be reviewed to determine your placement within a FCC Community of Practice group that best suits your needs and goals.

Price – $1,750 includes ten (10) monthly sessions via Zoom for two (2) hours over the course of a year. In addition, 3 quarterly workshops sessions


Origins of FCC

In the late 1990’s, the Diversity Institute at the University of Minnesota conducted a student immersion leadership program, facilitated by Nehrwr Abdul-Wahid, called “Diversity Explorations.” Beth Zemsky soon joined the facilitation team. Together Nehrwr and Beth expanded the curriculum and the audience to include University of Minnesota students, faculty, staff, and community members who wished to build their leadership skills around diversity and inclusion. Nehrwr and Beth conducted Diversity Explorations workshops annually at the University of Minnesota, and later in community settings through the early 2000’s when Phyllis Braxton and julius erolin (both of whom had been participants in earlier Diversity Exploration workshops) joined the team. Nehrwr, Beth, julius, and Phyllis brought their over 50 years of collective experience in working for diversity, inclusion and equity, and their commitment to learn from each other and workshop participants, to create a new design for training leaders committed to intercultural competence and social justice. Facilitating Cultural Change was born out of this collaboration. The current design of Facilitating Cultural Change owes much to the creativity, passion, commitment, compassion, wisdom, and intellectual rigor of this team.

Want to know more about these workshops?

Listen to Beth and colleague Phyllis discuss the January 2018 FCC workshop…

Listen to the episode

Workshop updates form

Leave us your contact details to receive updates and workshop dates.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.