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Shippensburg University to celebrate annual ‘Day of Human Understanding’

27 February 2013 No Comment

SHIPPENSBURG — Shippensburg University will celebrate its annual Day of Human Understanding March 5 with workshops and special events that reflect on diversity, inclusion and cultural competence. The programs are free and open to the public.

Alice O’Connor, professor of history at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and director of the UCSB Washington Center program in Washington, D.C., will present the keynote address at 3:30 p.m. in Old Main Chapel. Her talk is “America’s Forgotten War: The Politics of Fighting Poverty From The Great Society to The New Gilded Age.”

She will discuss the period when ending poverty was an official policy goal, and describe initiatives launched during this time that raised issues on equity and social justice that remain today.

A silent auction will raise funds for the Safe Harbour Homeless Shelter in Carlisle. Items will be on display 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Ceddia Union Building hallway outside the cafeteria.

The film, “Who Killed Chea Vichea?” will be shown at 6:30 p.m. in Grove Hall Forum. A discussion with producer Rich Garella on “Life and Death in a Fledgling Democracy,” will follow.

The day begins with a program at 8 a.m. in CUB 119 with, “Embracing Diversity in the 21st Century: A Panel Discussion on Immigration and Community Organizing.”

Panel members include Jessica Miller, parent coordinator for Title I and Title III at Chambersburg Area School District; Pete Lagiovane, mayor of Chambersburg; Diana Martes, executive director of the Chambersburg Hispanic American Center; Lilly Rodas, Americorps volunteer at the Chambersburg Hispanic American Center; and José Ricardo-Osorio, associate professor and chair of the modern languages department.

Breakout sessions will begin at 9:30 a.m. and continue through 3:15 p.m. The sessions, all in the CUB, are:

- 9:30 to 10:45 a.m.: “Homelessness.” A discussion of homelessness in Cumberland and Franklin counties.

- 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.: “Exploring Class Values and Initiating Cross-class Dialogue.” An exploration of class values and strategies for effective cross-class dialogue.

- 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.: “Human Trafficking — Exploitation for Slave Labor and Sex.” A review of issues and discussion on how consumers can use their purchasing power to influence elimination of forced labor and examination of dynamics that influence the severity and prevalence of labor and sex trafficking.

- 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.: “Experiential Learning on Poverty and Social Justice in Our Neighborhoods and Communities.” Presenters will review poverty in southcentral Pennsylvania and its impact on area residents.

- 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.: “Race: The Power of an Illusion In The 21st Century: ‘The House We Live In Part I,’” followed from 12:30 to 1:45 p.m. by Part II, introduced with the video, “The House We Live In.” The two-part sessions will focus on how institutions shape and create race.

- 12:30 to 1:45 p.m.: “Breaking the Cycle of White Privilege in the Field of Accounting.” A review of the demographic trends in accounting, and the educational and employment opportunities available to minorities.

- 12:30 to 1:45 p.m.: “Children in Poverty: The Case Of Gros — Mangles, Haiti.” Blandine Mitaut, assistant professor of modern languages, and Agnes Ragone, professor of modern languages, will use their personal experiences to look at poverty in the rural community of Gros-Mangles, on the island of La Gonâve, and center on the issues faced by children in this remote area.

- 2 to 3:15 p.m.: “Conversations on Disability.” A panel of speakers who each have disabilities, including university students and participants in People Involved Equally (a student group that works with adults with disabilities who live in the community).

- 2 to 3:15 p.m.: “Poverty Looks Like Me.” An exploration of the causes and consequences of poverty and an exercise that provides a glimpse into what it means to be poor in the U.S.

- 2 to 3:15 p.m.: “Dehumanization and the Path to Genocide.” An exploration on how perpetrators of genocide willingly challenge human identity, and why people often “stand by” and allow this human rights tragedy to occur.

- 2 to 3:15 p.m.: “Minefield of Diversity: What will it take to get to the other side?” Multicultural Student Affairs leaders will highlight the impact of culture both in and out of the classroom.

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