June 25, 2015 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

By Nicole Bullock

Five King’s faculty traveled to the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, from June 15-19 2015 to attend the 7th Annual Summer Institute for Faculty in Peace Studies Program Development. Social Justice and Peace (SJPS) faculty Dr. Allyson Larkin, Dr. Megan Shore, Dr. Tom Malleson, and the Coordinator of SJPS program Dr. Thomas Tieku as well as Political Science professor Dr. Jaquetta Newman attended the program. The program themed "Teaching Peace in the 21st Century" was hosted by the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and the United States Institute of Peace (USIP).                                              
During their time at the Institute, the King’s faculty were able to reflect on ways to strengthen the Social Justice and Peace Studies program at King's, develop new dimensions and explore the pedagogical, administrative and communicative challenges of developing a social justice and peace studies courses and programs in the 21st century.  

The program allowed King’s faculty to collaborate and share experiences with faculty from 17 other universities from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, Middle East and of course the United States on pathways to build a rigorous SJPS program. The King’s faculty were able to draw on the expertise of key thinkers in the field of peace studies for insights on how to take the SJPS program at King's to a new level.

“At the Kroc Institute, we were able to sustain conversations and to really dig deeply into the strengths and challenges facing our program.  It was an opportunity to get to know my colleagues on another level, and to work with some remarkable experts in the field of peace and justice studies," says Dr. Allyson Larkin.

The annual University of Notre Dame event brings together teams of academics who intend to launch a peace studies program at their college or university, strengthen or develop a new dimension to a peace studies program, or move an established peace studies program to the next level of design and rigor. The program is led by Dr. George A. Lopez, an internationally recognized authority on peace studies program development.

"The chance to spend a week at the leading peace studies program in North America, Notre Dame's Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, provided us an amazing opportunity to think about ways to develop the peace studies aspect of our program. What a privilege it was to work with the leading thinkers, practitioners and activists in the field of peace studies. We got to think about ways in which we can really strengthen the connection between social justice and peace in our program. It was a true privilege to work with my great colleagues and envision what an even greater program Social Justice and Peace Studies can be,” says Dr. Megan Shore.

The faculty gained valuable knowledge which will contribute to the ongoing development of the best possible Social Justice and Peace program for King’s students.  Coordinator of SJPS program Dr. Thomas Tieku captured this succinctly when he said “Kroc reaffirmed my belief that although SJPS at King’s is in a good spot, it has enormous room to grow and together with my dedicated colleagues we are determined to get the program and our wonderful students to the next level.”