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February 26, 2001

Reconciliation Symposium

Sarah Richards works in Theory-Practice Learning, Faith in the City and the
Reconciliation Symposium and workshops; Karen Poremski is coordinator
of the symposium and visiting assistant professor of English.

The questions raised during January’s Reconciliation Symposium continue to float through campus: Can we overcome conflicts based on differences of race or sexuality? What can scholars of different disciplines—science and religion, for example—learn from each other’s work? How can we, as a campus, find a way to coexist with nature even as we expand our lab, classroom and office space?

While the symposium took an important step in bringing campus discussion to bear on these questions, it is important not to let its legacy live in words and ideas alone. A series of follow-up workshops continues what began last month and aims to lead to our next steps of action. The goal of the committee members who created these workshops was to ensure that the symposium would have a lasting impact on Emory, reflected in its teaching, research and service.

Upcoming workshop topics will include everything from planning a curriculum to nurturing our green spaces; formats range from structured discussions to field trips to service projects. Here are just a few of those coming up:

• On Monday, Feb. 26, “Designing Reconciliation into the Curriculum” will take place from 4–6:30 p.m. in 362 Dobbs Center. This workshop will feature Charles Villa-Vicencio, professor at the University of Cape Town and former director of publications for the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Villa-Vicencio will speak about his experiences in designing a master’s program in reconciliation. He will help participants understand the process of establishing such a program and the curricular issues it raises.

• The second offering of Johnnetta Cole’s “Stories of Racial Reconciliation” will take place on March 7 from 4–6:30 p.m. in the Harris Hall parlor. This workshop will bring together a diverse group of people to hear and tell their own stories of race and reconciliation.

• “Emory and Atlanta: Challenges and Opportunities for Creating University-Community Partnerships” will take place at noon on March 7 in Cox Hall. In addition to presenting the services and programs of the Office of University-Community Partnerships, the workshop will give faculty the opportunity to learn about its mini-grants program for teaching and research assistance.

• On March 22, “Justice as a Starting Point for Reconciliation”
will take place from 4–6:30 p.m. in the multipurpose room on the ground floor of Hopkins Hall. The workshop will be led by Andrea Carmen, executive director of the International Indian Treaty Council in Palmer, Alaska. The goal of this workshop is to foster an understanding of the indigenous worldview and its value in situations of conflict resolution. Discussion will focus specifically on the fundamental starting points for reconciliation with Native Americans.

• On March 22 and 23, 100 staff, faculty and students will expand their environmental knowledge and brainstorm plans of action for the University’s future. Consultants from Second Nature, a nonprofit group from Boston, will help deepen the community’s awareness of current issues, learn how other institutions are minimizing their impact on the environment, and develop ways in which Emory can restore environmental quality. A special application is required for this workshop; contact the Office of University Conferences for more details.

To register or find out more about any workshop, send e-mail to or call 404-727-0427. For a complete listing of workshop offerings, visit


Back to Emory Report Feb. 26, 2001