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Education University of Groningen Summer Schools

Developing Across Differences: Culturally Adaptive Coaching & Mentoring

For more effective leadership across differences
12 cac

Culture matters for leaders — of all sorts — to more effectively support and offer appropriate guidance to those they interact with. Coaching and mentoring models can have been proven to foster effective leadership. Applying a culturally-adaptive approach to coaching and mentoring makes them all the more powerful.

In this course — designed for those who are already coaches as well as those who simply want to use coaching and mentoring methods in their work — you’ll learn what these models are and how they can help you and those you work with build greater trust, create more authentic connections, and generate more productive outcomes.

*By request, this course has been extended to be a 2-day workshop so that participants have more practice and feedback time on the techniques shared.*

Why should you attend?

No matter what your title, if you lead in a professional or organizational setting, this course will demonstrate the importance of cultural self-awareness and reflexivity — and provide you with practical tools for use in your everyday 1-1 interactions with those you coach and/or mentor, whether formally or informally.

●  Join this course to explore the ”Why, What, and How” of applying culturally-adaptive coaching and mentoring. It will help you and those you interact with to bring better versions of themselves to all that they do.

●  Gain practical culturally-adaptive skills and techniques — such as using silence, statements, and stories — in order to help your stakeholders to gain clarity, discover their own solutions, and better collaborate across differences.

In addition to mentoring and coaching expertise, Dr. Nagesh Rao has led sustainable campus-wide intercultural competence development and diversity and inclusion programs/systems in higher education around the world.

Practical information
Dates & location

8 - 9 July 2024

Academy Building (Broerstraat 5) or Harmonie Building (Oude Kijk in Het Jatstraat 26)



May be appropriate for some MA students; contact the organisers for consultation about eligibility


€ 995
(includes course and materials, optional evening programming)

Academic coordinators

Dr. Nagesh Rao

ic or info
Level requirements

The DAD is for multipliers who help individuals, organizations and societies better recognize, appreciate and use differences as a way of better communicating, working and thriving together.

These are (in-house and external) trainers, educators, consultants, coaches, researchers, scholars, facilitators, HR staff, advanced-level (MA+) students, and professional development specialists with 5+ years of experience/study in the greater Differences field. Contact the organisers at ic or info for consultation about appropriateness and eligibility.

It is expected that the participants have a sufficient command of the English language to actively participate in the discussions and to present their own work in English.

Participant profile

This course is for you if you are:

● A workplace leader/consultant who interacts with individuals and/or groups from diverse backgrounds who seeks to acquire and/or improve your 1-to-1 communication abilities by using culturally-adaptive skills.

● A coach or mentor (all levels including exploring coaching/mentoring as an option) who seeks to acquire and/or improve your practice by using culturally-adaptive skills.

● A workplace leader/consultant wishing to understand how to incorporate culturally-adaptive coaching and mentorship practices within an organisation.

Learning outcomes

In this course, you will learn how to help yourself and those you work with so that you/they can better:

  • Understand what coaching and mentoring are (and are not), how these can be used to support people in their development, and why they need to be adapted to accommodate culturally diverse clients/stakeholders.

  • Explore the roles of coaching and mentorship within leadership as a part of developing your own more effective practices.

  • Practice culturally adaptive skills for more productive 1-1 interactions. These include using silence, statements, and stories for clients/internal stakeholders to gain clarity, discover their own solutions, and develop across differences.

  • Help clients/internal stakeholders learn the process of incorporating culturally-adaptive coaching and mentorship practices within an organisation.


12 hours of in-class learning and active participation using experiential methods.

Upon successful completion of the programme, the Summer School offers a Certificate of Attendance that mentions the workload of 12 hours (28 hours corresponds to 1 ECTS). Students can apply for recognition of these credits to the relevant authorities in their home institutions, therefore the final decision on awarding credits is at the discretion of their home institutions. We will be happy to provide any necessary information that might be requested in addition to the certificate of attendance.

Course schedule

Sunday, 7 July
15.00-18.00 Optional networking event

Monday, 8 July - Tuesday, 9 July

Learning approach 

This course will combine input, storytelling, interactive activities, and discussion to engage everyone in the exploration of coaching across differences.

Introduction to lecturer

Nagesh Rao, PhD
Currently based in the US, Dr. Nagesh Rao is an accomplished DEI trainer, coach, consultant and professor who uses intercultural competence, cultural humility, storytelling and intercultural listening to develop leaders in healthcare/medicine, education and business.

In Nagesh’s three+ decades of teaching, consulting and training, he has worked with clients in Fortune 500 corporations, top medical schools and hospitals, educational institutes and community-based non-profit organizations in Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas.

In 2017, Dr. Rao was named special advisor on inclusion and faculty affairs and asked to design and implement Ohio University (US) Medical School’s Office of Inclusion. He has visiting lecturer appointments at numerous universities including the University of Groningen (Netherlands).

Faculty statement: “I am inspired by Anais Nin’s quote, ‘We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.’’”

Application procedure
Deadline for application

Registration closes on 1 July 2024.

Date of selection
Within 72 hours following registration, you will be contacted directly by the organisers about your application.

Participants submit payment and details about their interest at the link below (click the "Apply now!" button). They will be contacted directly by the organisers about their experience and the suitability of the course.

Please note that as all courses are subject to meeting minimum enrolments, the DAD team will confirm on or before 17 May 2024 that your course is taking place. We strongly advise you not to book non-refundable travel until you have received this confirmation. In all cases, refunds for courses are not available except in the case of course cancellation by the DAD organisers. In the case that your preferred course is cancelled, you are welcomed to enroll in an alternative course or request a refund. You will be notified on or before 17 May 2024 if the DAD course is cancelled. This policy is different from that of other University of Groningen Summer School and Language Centre courses. Full details are available on the Developing Across Differences (DAD) Learning Lab & Community Week Terms and Conditions page.

Last modified:08 May 2024 11.51 a.m.