4th Annual National Community College Peacebuilding Seminar Set for October 21-24, 2016

By: David J. Smith, February 5, 2016

The 4th Annual National Community College Peacebuilding Seminar will be held October 21-24, 2016 at Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA), Alexandria, Virginia. Registration information will be provided in March.  Check back to this site for more information.

Since 2013, an seminar has been held for community college faculty and staff looking to build capacity for teaching about conflict resolution, peace studies, human rights, peacebuilding, and related issues in community colleges.   To date, over 90 faculty from 35 community colleges have participated in the seminar.


The 2014 seminar visiting the U.S. Institute of Peace

For more information on past seminars read this NOVA blog and watch this video from Montgomery College (where the first seminar was held).

For more information, contact David J. Smith at davidjsmith@fulbrightmail.org.

Plans Underway for Global Climate Seminar at Northern Virginia Community College, April 21-23, 2016: Registration Closes March 4

By: David J. Smith, February 4, 2016

Plans are underway for Global Climate Change and Environmental Challenges: Approaches to Teaching in Community Colleges to be held April 21-23, 2016 at Northern Virginia imagesCommunity College (NOVA) in Alexandria, VA.  This unique and timely program will consider strategies that can be used in engaging students in considering the urgent challenges we face relative to climate change and other environmental challenges. Registration is open now and ends March 4.

The three-day seminar is part of the series of faculty professional development programs offered through NOVA’s Institute for Public Service.   Previously programs have been held on global peacebuilding (2014, 2015) and global health (2015).  Nearly 100 faculty from community colleges around the U.S. have attended these programs.

The agenda for the April program is being planned, but confirmed for the program include:

  • Edward Maibach, MPH, PhD (Director, Center for Climate Change Communication, George Mason University)
  • Virginia Burkett, PhD (Associate director, Climate and Land Use Change, U.S. Geological Survey)
  • Judy Braus (Executive director, North American Association for Environmental Education)
  • Karin Russ, MS, RN (University of Maryland School of Nursing)
  • Randall Amster, JD, PhD (Director, Program on Justice and Peace, Georgetown University)

Site visits are scheduled for:

Registration, travel, and lodging information can be found here.

If you have questions about the program contact Linda Campos at lcampos@nvcc.edu or David  J. Smith at davidjsmith@fulbrightmail.org.

Global Education Award for Outstanding Voluntary Service Leadership

At a ceremony at the Bank of America Headquarters on January 13, 2016 I received the inaugural Global Education Award for Outstanding Voluntary Service Leadership by the World Affairs Council of Washington, DC.  To learn about the other winners, go here.


Receiving the World Affairs Council (WAC) award.  I am here with my son Lorenzo Choudhary-Smith.  He had participated in WAC’s WorldQuest program while in high school.


Peace and War & Community Colleges

By: David J. Smith, February 1, 2016

This article appeared in the 2016 Winter edition of the CCID Newsletterimgres

By David J. Smith, JD, MS

Educational Consultant and Peacebuilding Trainer; President, Forage Center for Peacebuilding and Humanitarian Education, Inc.


The effects of torture, the Islamic State, nonviolent responses to Ferguson, the international refugee crisis, how U.S. foreign assistance is spent, global peacebuilding. Reading this list one might conclude that it’s part of a program for policymakers and think-tank wonks. But the audience for this program was not policy professionals but community college educators. The 3rd Annual National Community College Peacebuilding Seminar “Teaching About Global Conflict and Peacebuilding” was held October 23-26, 2015 at the Alexandria campus of Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) and sponsored by the NOVA Institute for Public Service. Today, community colleges enroll students from all economic and social backgrounds, ages, as well as increasingly veterans and internationals. But they are often unable to connect with experts and resources examining issues of global conflict, violence, social change, and peacebuilding: all critical issues today. The seminar is designed to build capacity in teaching complex global issues in the classroom.

USIP visit, 10.23.15

Community college seminar visit to USIP, October 23, 2015

The seminar is an opportunity for community college educators to learn from policymakers, scholars, and practitioners about global conflict and responses to violence. Over the past three years 90 educators from 35 community colleges have attended including the Maricopa County Community Colleges, Miami-Dade College, Valencia College, Harper College, Southeastern Community College, Harrisburg Area Community College, Richland College, Tulsa Community College, and Northern Virginia Community College. Rob Katz, an associate professor of humanities and music at Tulsa Community College (TCC) and co-founder of TCC’s peace studies and conflict resolution program attended the 2015 program. In reflecting on the seminar he notes:

Meeting other community college professionals engaged in peacebuilding is both encouraging and necessary. Forming a network of peers who are dedicated to these principles and informing students about ways of thinking about their communities, states, and the world that is an alternative to the unproductive and often violent consequences of conflict is inspiring and allows me to bring new ideas and approaches to my colleagues at TCC and to our students who so desperately need these perspectives. 

The seminar draws an interdisciplinary group of faculty coming from the social sciences, humanities, as well as career and technical education. Besides faculty, representatives from groups supporting community college efforts including NAFSA, the Alliance for Peacebuilding, the American Red Cross, and various nongovernmental organizations have attended the seminar, as well as a number of international educators.

During the 2015 seminar, faculty attended briefings at the U.S. Institute of Peace, the U.S. Diplomacy Center of the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. These organizations are eager to work with community colleges to advance international education and global awareness. In addition, experts from the Institute for Economics and Peace, the U.S. Committee on Refugees and Immigrants, the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, and Saferworld shared about their work. Faculty viewed two films: Circus Without Borders, which examines the efforts to bring hope through circus to communities in arctic Canada and Guinea, and Beneath the Blindfold, which takes an intimate look at those recovering from torture.The next peacebuilding seminar will be held in October 2016. On April 21-23, 2016 the Institute for Public Service will host a program for faculty on environment issues: “Global Climate Change and Environmental Challenges: Approaches to Teaching in Community Colleges.” If you are interested in attending the 2016 environmental or peacebuilding seminars or interested in the work of the Institute for Public Service, contact Linda Campos at lcampus@nvcc.edu. If you are interested in the how community colleges are promoting peacebuilding, contact David J. Smith at davidjsmith@fulbrightmail.org.

Call for Papers: Peace Journalism Magazine

By David J. Smith, January 28, 2016

A great opportunity for students, faculty, and practitioners.

Call for Papers—The Peace Journalist magazine

The Peace Journalist magazine is seeking submissions for our April, 2016 edition. The Peace Journalist is a semi-annual publication (print and .pdf) of the Center for Global Peace Journalism at Park University in Parkville, Missouri. The Peace Journalist is dedicated to disseminating news and information for and about teachers, students, and practitioners of peace and conflict sensitive journalism.

Submissions are welcome from all. For the next edition of The Peace Journalist, we are seeking short submissions (300-550 words) detailing peace journalism projects, classes, proposals, academic works in the field, etc. We also welcome longer submissions (800-1200 words) about peace or conflict sensitive journalism projects or program.

Please submit your article via email to steve.youngblood@park.edu. Also send a 2-3 sentence biography of the author, as well as a small head and shoulders photo of the author. In addition, please submit photos and graphics that could accompany your article.s, as well as academic works from the field. The Peace Journalist will not run general articles about peace initiatives or projects, but rather seeks only articles with a strong peace media/peace journalism/conflict sensitive journalism angle.

The submission deadline is March 7. However, given the limited space available in this issue, it’s advisable to submit your article early.

To see a .pdf of the October, 2015 edition, go to:


Thank you in advance for your interest in the Peace Journalist.



Call for Applications: ICNC Curriculum Fellowships on Civil Resistance

By David J. Smith, January 27, 2016
This is a great opportunity, especially for community colleges, from the  International Center on Nonviolent Conflict. 
ICNC is launching the third edition of its popular Curriculum Fellowship program to support and advance both classroom-based and online teaching on civil resistance.

We strongly encourage you to closely review eligibility requirements and other important details about this fellowship here. Please note that incomplete submissions will not be considered, and plagiarism will disqualify an applicant.

We acknowledge the benefits of both traditional classroom-based teaching and online learning. Therefore, this year we are offering Curriculum Fellowships to support both formats. We strongly encourage applications from academic faculty and educators from countries or regions with restrictive spaces or conflict-torn places where greater knowledge and understanding of nonviolent resistance practices would benefit young people and society in general.

In 2016, up to eight curriculum fellowships, each in the amount of$1,300, will be offered on open, merit and competitive bases to university and college faculty and instructors to develop:

1.    a curriculum unit on civil resistance that will be incorporated into the existing classroom-based, elective or mandatory, semester-long course at the applicant’s home university. For more see Classroom-Based Course
2.    an online seminar on civil resistance that will be offered to students and interested participants from applicant’s university, town, district, country or the region. The online seminar would be given through ICNC’s Moodle platform. For more see Online Seminar

Teaching for 2016/2017 ICNC Curriculum Fellowships is expected to take place either in late spring, summer, fall 2016 or spring 2017.

The application deadline is February 14, 2015.

First Annual Conference for the Southern California Network for Peacebuilding, 1/29/16

By: David J. Smith, January 25, 2016
I received this notice from Paula Garb at UC-Irvine.  If you are in the SoCal area you may want to attend.
Friday, January 29th –  at UC Irvine Student Center
3:00PM-5:00PM First Annual Conference of The Southern California Network for Peacebuilding (SCNP) at UCI Student Center, Pacific Ballroom C 
Fostering the collaboration of peace education and practice, SCNP coordinates knowledge and resource sharing to enhance the efforts of all programs in peace education and practice.  The conference gives us an opportunity to meet and share information with each other and international and national guests of UCI’s Peace and Justice Week.  For the full schedule of other events during Peace and Justice Week at UCI, please go to peaceweek.weebly.com