On Thursday, November 10th I was a panelist for an alumni panel at American University. I was joined Maryanne Yerkes who is a Democracy Officer at USAID. We spoke about our respective careers, how they are related to the field of human rights, how our American University experience helped prepare us professionally, and any advice or tips for students interested in pursuing similar professions.
I felt that the work I do at ICNC and Maryanne’s work at USAID had a lot of similar components, which turned the conversation into an interesting look at nonviolent civil resistance as a method to demand and win rights, freedom, and democratic self-rule.
Posted in Presentations
Tagged alumni, American University, blogging, civil resistance, human rights, human rights week, maryanne yerkes, nonviolence, people power, professional development, USAID
Today I gave a Prezi presentation and facilitated a discussion on peace pedagogy for a group of City Year Corps Leaders. City Year is an education focused, nonprofit organization that unites young people of all backgrounds for a year of full-time service to keep students in school and on track to graduation. My presentation focused on the work I have been doing within the field of peace education, looking holistically at how one can teach peace, no matter the subject or age level, in order to cultivate peaceable classrooms and communities. My presentation was part of a larger program American University organized for City Year and involved presentations by several other American University professors. Continue reading to learn more…
Link to Peace Pedagogy course website
The Fall 2011 semester at American University began on August 31st. This semester I am teaching two different courses: Education for International Development (EDU285), which meets on Wednesdays from 2:35pm – 5:15pm and Peace Pedagogy (EDU596), which meets right after from 5:30pm – 8:00pm. This is the first time that I have taught two courses in one semester, let alone back to back on the same day, so I would be lying if I said I wasn’t feeling a bit overwhelmed taking on this course load on top of my full time job. That being said, the first few weeks have been going well. I have great groups of students, interesting subject matter, and a “manageable” schedule. There are also some new teaching tools and methods that I am trying out this semester and I am looking forward to seeing how they pan out.
Posted in Education/Training
Tagged American University, circle processes, conflict resolution, course portfolio, education for international development, evaluation, international development, nonviolence, peace, peace education, peace pedagogy, reflective listening, self-assessment, training
From July 17th – 24th, I attended, along with approximately 45 other participants from around the world, the National Peace Academy’s Peacebuilding Peacelearning Intensive, held on the Champlain College campus in Burlington, VT. The goal of the intensive was to “nurture your holistic development as a peacebuilder by engaging in deep reflection and critical inquiry into your own worldviews, values, principles, and assumptions…In supporting the development of peace systems we [NPA] will engage you in a reflective and integrative planning process that will culminate in the development of your own unique, ‘Peacebuilding Plan Proposal.'”
This was a truly transformative experience and one of the best workshops/community gatherings in which I have ever participated. The diversity of people that were in attendance, the quality of presentations, the power of the reflective processes, and the community that was built around our visions for peace was something that furthered my commitment to the beloved community of peacebuilders and peacelearners across the globe. Continue reading to learn about my experience over the five days.
Posted in Digital Strategy, Events
Tagged American University, Amy Seidl, appreciative inquiry, Arthur Romano, Bill Mckibbin, Burlington, Champlain College, Dale Snauwaert, Dave Ragland, dialogue, Dot Maver, National Peace Academy, nonviolence, Pat Mische, peace, Peacebuilding Peacelearning Intensive, ppi, reflection, Tiffany Hunter, Tony Jenkins, twitter, Vermont, world cafe
Even with a whopping 58 students in the class, the spring semester has flown by. Since we like to elicit a lot of participation from the student, facilitate a lot of group activities, get the students moving around, and playing around with different learn space set ups, an increased class size, in a room with auditorium style fixed seating, made for some teaching and facilitation challenges. But my dad and I made the necessary adjustments and, as far as I can say, had a good time working, yet again, with another group of AU students.
As we’ve done in the past, we ended the semester with students working in teams to design a education/training program that seeks to address one of many development challenges facing the finctional country of Afrinia. The teams then present their program to the rest of the class, specifically addressing questions related to the major themes and concepts covered during the semester. We did a little something different this year, however, with the presentations – we asked each team to put together a pecha-kucha presentation.
Today I participated in the Global Day of Action on Military Spending – a global effort to draw attention to the amount of money countries spend on defense, war, and their military vs. other issues and human needs like clean water, basic sanitation, primary schooling for all, eradication of HIV/AIDS and other major diseases, etc – all of which can be accomplished by spending just a small fraction of what the world spends on war-making. My good friend, mentor, and fellow peace educator, Barbara Wien, invited me to facilitate a session on peace education and nonviolence during a teach-in event that was held during the day of action on American University’s campus. The goal for our session was for attendees to not just be aware about how much money is spent on war-making and the nefarious interests that profit from it, but to actually start thinking about alternative approaches, specific actions, and examples of how people, communities, and government’s can create security, fight for human rights, and advance social justice, without violence and war. Continue reading to learn more about the day and the issue.
Posted in Presentations
Tagged activism, American University, barbara wien, ben cohen, budget, eugene jarecki, gdams, global day of action on military spending, mdgs, military spending, pentagon, teach-in, true majority
The spring 2011 semester at American University has begin and my dad and I continue to teach EDU285 – Education for International Development. This semester marks the fourth time we’ve taught this course and we are continuing to find new ways to make the class better – introducing appropriate amounts of content, incorporating a diverse set of activities and exercises, and utilizing new online tools to enhance student learning. This semester there are three main changes from previous semesters: (1) a Twitter feed (@AUedu285) to follow stories related to education and international development, (2) a website redesign, and (3) more guest speakers.
Posted in Digital Strategy, Education/Training
Tagged American University, AUedu285, blog, edu285, general education, international development, online learning, richard cambridge, twitter, website, wordpress