Social Justice Week 2014!

Please join us for

By Kate Claffey

Elizabethtown College’s
Social Justice Week
September 19-25, 2014


All events are open to entire Elizabethtown College community and we strongly encourage all students, faculty, and staff to attend. Please contact Dr. Rita Shah for additional information, questions, or concerns.
Friday, September 19-Saturday, September 20:
Camping along the Appalachian Trial
2:00 pm
Meet in front of Leffler Chapel


Led by Jean-Paul Benowitz, students will leave campus around 2 pm Friday afternoon and travel to both the Michaeux and Pine Grove State Forests, where they will camp overnight. As part of the camping trip, students will learn about the history of the Appalachian trail and the conservation efforts along the trial while also helping with some of the conservation activities at the various locations they visit. Similar to the Etown Walks, the goal is to help students understand how the environment is connected to their daily lives, even if they do not always see it. Please contact Jean-Paul Benowitz for additional information or to register to attend.


Sunday, September 21:
Etown Walks I and II
11:00 am and 2:00 pm
Meet at the BSC Terrace
The kick off day, also International Peace Day, will begin the week by discussing environmental issues at Elizabethtown College. The goal of this day is to help students understand that environmental issues are not abstract, but impact their daily lives, even when they do not always see the impact. This event will encompass two environmental walks around the Etown campus. One will be led by David Bowne and one by President Carl Strikwerda (with Jean-Paul Benowitz as back-up). The event will also include 2-3 booths around campus that provide self-guided versions of the tours for students who unable to attend the walks. Please contact Dr. David Kenley for additional information.
Monday, September 22:
Promised Land
7:00-10:00 pm
Gibble Auditorium
As part of Social Justice Week, with an emphasis on environmental justice, the 2012 film “Promised Land,” directed by Gus Van Sant, will be shown. Starring Matt Damon and Hal Holbrook, the screenplay is written by Damon and based on a story by Dave Eggers. The film follows the resource extraction process, hydraulic fracturing, and two corporate salespeople who visit a rural town in an attempt to buy drilling rights from the local residents. The discussant will be Dr. David R. Bowne, assistant professor of biology. Please contact Jean-Paul Benowitz for additional information.
Tuesday, September 23:
Social Justice Book Club
6:00-7:30 pm
High Library Winter’s Alcove

The book club will discuss issues of environmental justice in a smaller setting so as to have an in-depth and nuanced conversation. The book chosen, New perspectives on environmental justice: Gender, sexuality, and activism, includes essays on the role women played in the environmental justice movement and the intersection of gender, sexuality, and environmental issues. Please contact Dr. Shannon Haley-Mize for more information or to obtain a copy of the book.


Wednesday, September 24:
Environmental Policy Discussion
11:00 am-12:00 pm
Musser Auditorium, Leffler Chapel and Performing Arts Center
The goal of the panel is to discuss environmental issues from a policy perspective. Specifically, the panel will include a 30 minute moderated discussion of how policy decisions and environmental activism can help, but also potentially hurt, each other’s goals and a 30-minute Q&A with the audience. Please contact Jonathan Rudy for more information. Panelists include:
Dr. Tom Murray, Professor of Biology and Director of the Environmental Science Program at Elizabethtown College. Dr. Murray’s primary research interests are in aquatic ecology and the restoration of impaired aquatic systems. He and his students are currently involved in a stream temperature research project with faculty and students at eleven other colleges and universities in the US and Canada as part of the EREN (Ecological Research as Education Network). That project investigates the impact of riparian buffers on stream temperature, a topic of particular interest in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. In addition, he and his students are engaged in the Conewago Collaborative Initiative, a multi-agency, long-term effort to restore the Conewago Creek. In that project, Dr. Murray’s students have been working on the US Fish and Wildlife restoration project at Hershey Meadows, 15 acres of new wetland and restored stream corridor located just outside Elizabethtown.
Joanne Kilgour, Esq., Director of the Sierra Club Pennsylvania Chapter in the organization’s Harrisburg office. Before joining the Sierra Club, Joanne held the position of Legal Director at the Center for Coalfield Justice in Washington, PA, working on matters related to underground mining and natural gas extraction. Joanne received her undergraduate education at Carnegie Mellon University and her legal education at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, where she earned a certificate in Environmental Law, Science, and Policy and was awarded the Thornburgh Prize for Legal Service.
John Quigley, principal of John H Quigley LLC. He is a national leader on sustainable shale gas development and has advocated this position nationally and internationally on television, radio, and newspapers. He was a participant on CERA’s 2012 conference panel on hydraulic fracturing that was sponsored by Shell Oil; and keynoted the 2012 Howard Baker Forum Technology Workshop on shale gas in Washington, DC. His clients/consultancies include state/national/international NGO’s, foundations, state/foreign governments, and private industry.
Thursday, September 25:
Environmental Justice Debate
3:30-5:00 pm
The culmination of the Social Justice week is a debate between individuals on each side of Environmental Justice. The goal is to discuss the various sides of the issues of poverty and disparate impacts of environmental decisions across groups. Please contact Dr. Rita Shah for more information. The debaters include:
Matthew Haar, Esq., litigation attorney and partner in the Harrisburg office of Saul Ewing LLP and member of the firm’s Oil and Gas practice. He has experience litigating matters related to exploration, production and transportation of oil and natural gas, as well as disputes related to ownership of mineral rights, condemnation of rights of way for gas pipelines, personal injury and property damage. He routinely represents clients in Pennsylvania state and federal courts as well as before Pennsylvania State Administrative Agencies.
Donald A. Brown, Scholar In Residence, Sustainability Ethics and Law; Professor, Widener University School of Law in Harrisburg, PA. He is also currently a part-time Professor, Nanjing University of Science Information and Technology, Nanjing China where he lectures on climate change ethics. He taught courses on International Environmental Law, Human Rights Law, and Comparative Law and is a contributing author to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), 5th Assessment Report. Previously he was Associate Professor of Environmental Ethics, Science, and Law at the Pennsylvania State University where he taught interdisciplinary courses on climate change and sustainable development. Prior to that, he was an environmental lawyer for the states of Pennsylvania and New Jersey and Program Manager for United Nations Organizations at the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of International Environmental Policy. In this position he represented US EPA negotiating sustainability issues at the United Nations including climate change, international water issues, biodiversity, and Agenda 21. Mr. Brown has written extensively on climate change and sustainability issues and lectured on these matters in 35 countries. His newest book has just been published in November 2012 by Rutledge, Earthscan, Navigating the Perfect Moral Storm, Climate Ethics. He manages an award winning blog, a publication that examines ethical issues that arise in climate change policy formation. He has written over 140 books, book chapters, and articles on climate change ethics.
Dr. Kyle C. Kopko, Etown class of 2005; Assistant Professor of Political Science; Director of the Pre-Law Program at Elizabethtown College. Dr. Kopko holds a Ph.D. in political science with a concentration in constitutional law from The Ohio State University, and a B.A. in political science from Elizabethtown College. His research has been featured in Election Law Journal, Judicature, Presidential Studies Quarterly, and Political Behavior. He regularly teaches courses on constitutional law, judicial process, and American politics.

Posted in: Uncategorized

Announcing: Social Justice Week!

Please join us for

By Kate Claffey

Elizabethtown College’s
Social Justice Week

October 22-26, 2012


All events are open to entire Elizabethtown College community and we strongly encourage all students, faculty, and staff to attend. Please contact Angela Wilt or Dr. Rita Shah for additional information, questions, or concerns.
Monday, October 22:
UgandaSpeaks Panel
6:30-9:30 pm
A follow-up presentation to last semester’s Kony2012 discussion, this panel will look at the issue from the Ugandan perspective and discuss the methods of achieving social justice. This panel will consist of a roughly 45-minute documentary followed by an open question and answer period.


Tuesday, October 23:
Gun Violence Discussion
3:30-5:00 pm
Hoover 110
A student panel discussing the recent span of gun violence, how to address it, and the role gun control should play, if any, in reducing gun-related violence.
Slam Poetry
9:00-11:00 pm
Blue Bean Coffee Shop
An open forum for students, faculty, and staff to discuss issues of social justice by showing their creative side. This is an opportunity for you to use spoken word, music, short plays, etc. to showcase the issues you believe are captured under the idea of social justice.


Wednesday, October 24:
Human Trafficking Awareness and Response
11:00 am-12:00 pm
Musser Auditorium, Leffler Chapel and Performance Center
The College’s Education Department hosts Kathleen Davis, director of National Training & Technical Assistance at Polaris Project, an organization that combats human trafficking. She presents “Human Trafficking Awareness and Response” as it relates to Pennsylvania.
Model UN: Addressing Syria
5:00-6:30 pm
Hoover 110
Elizabethtown College’s Model UN club will perform a simulation of the United Nation’s Security Council as they discuss how to address the human rights crisis taking place in Syria. The panel will discuss the issue for approximately 1 hour followed by a 30 minute question and answer session open to the audience.


Thursday, October 25:
Social Justice Debate with Maia Cucchiara and Matthew Woessner
3:30-5:00 pm
With individuals representing both sides of the social justice issue, this panel hopes to open up dialogue as to the definitions of social justice, it’s worth, and whether or not educational institutions should play a role in social justice activities. The first 45-minutes will be a moderated debate between both sides, with the final 45-minutes serving as a question and answer session open to the audience.

Friday, October 26:
Social Justice in Action
5:00-7:00 pm
Hoover 110
This panel will wrap-up the week by discussing social justice within various fields of study, the extent to which individuals are willing to go to achieve social justice, and where the boundaries of social justice lie. The panel will include a 90-minute moderated discussion followed by a 30 minute question and answer session open to the audience.

Posted in: Musings

Knock Knock

One of my frustrations with both academic research and media reporting on crime and criminal justice issues is that we often ignore the voices of those directly impacted by the system. Not just the voices of those incarcerated, but also those who endure life as one related to an incarcerated individual. There are a few books written from the point of view of prisoners (Life without Parole comes to mind), a few on the impact of parental incarceration on children (fortunately this is a growing research area), and little to nothing from the point of view of parolees. It is frustrating because it makes it easy to forget that we are dealing with people, and easy to forget that the policies created impact millions of lives on a daily basis.

It also frustrating because, as a teacher, I try to give my students as complete a picture as possible. It is incredibly easy to discuss the administrative aspects of the criminal justice system, or of running a prison, but that is only half of the story. The other half involves discussing how our court systems are perceived by the accused, how prison life impacts an individual, the challenges one faces after leaving prison, and yes, the impact of parental incarceration on children. So, I am constantly in search of other forms of media, beyond written pieces, to help convey these issues to my student. Periodically, I find a gem that perfectly captures the issues at hand. This is one such clip:

Posted in: Musings