By: David J. Smith, April 13, 2015

Independence Community College  (ICC) in Independence, KS recently established a certificate in conflict resolution.  In an email dated April 10, Konye Ori, associate professor of communications,  the program coordinator,  wrote “Independence Community College is set to begin its conflict resolution program in the fall of 2015…. We (will) have experts, dignitaries, and field agents lecture (and)  engage with our students.”  The program will be the cornerstone of ICC’s  Dwight D. Eisenhower Institute for Diplomacy and Conflict Resolution.

The program, as noted on the college website, is  “specifically designed for students and mid-career professionals to train them in conflict analysis and resolution theory, research, and practical techniques relevant to their focused area of study or work.”  To complete the certificate, students must complete 5 courses for a total of 15 credit hours. Courses include Conflict Analysis and Resolution; Conflict and Peacebuilding;  Conflict, Identity, and Culture; and 6 hours of conflict resolution electives.

In October 2014, Ori attended the 2nd Annual National Community College Peacebuilding Seminar sponsored by Northern Virginia Community College and held in Alexandria, VA. There, he met with conflict resolution and peacebuilding professionals and organizations. Upon his return to Kansas, I was invited to visit Independence Community College in February 2015  to help promote the college’s effort and raise the profile of peacebuilding and conflict resolution work.

ICC’s program joins the ranks of more than 40 U.S. and Canadian community colleges offering programs and initiatives that focus on a range of peacebuilding themes.

For more information on the ICC program, contact Konye Ori at kori@indycc.edu.