Peace, Love and California Community Colleges

By David J. Smith, November 19, 2015


The past three days I have been visiting colleges in the San Francisco Bay Area as well as talking with leaders at the Community College League of California Conference.


Today, I spoke to about 20 attendees at a pre-conference session sponsored by California Colleges for International Education (CCIE).   Rosalind Raby is the executive director, and she invited me to talk with leaders about my work in peacebuilding.  I have long appreciated the work of CCIE in promoting global education with 2-year schools in California, as well as promoting the peacebuilding efforts I have been involved in.  The morning consisted of a number of presentations on study abroad, working with international students, and my talk where I emphasized the need to raise awareness of global issues with community college students, offer means for students to engage with each other, and promote ‘soft skills’ that will assist them personally and professionally.

The conference that followed was aptly titled “Peace, Love and California Community Colleges.”

In addition, I had the chance to visit the College of Alameda (COA) and Solano Community College (SCC).  At COA I was hosted by the Center for Community Change and Urban Leadership. There, I shared with students approaches to considering peace notions and ways to frame conflict.   At SCC, I was part of the college’s 10th Annual Peace Week, and was hosted by the Umoja program, designed to assist minority students. I spoke with both faculty and students on peacebuilding and conflict resolution approaches. This was my third visit to Solano.

My presentation at the College of Alameda was recorded by Peralta Community Colleges. It is here.


Published by David J. Smith

I am a career coach, consultant, and head of a not for profit - the Forage Center - that offers humanitarian education training. I also teach at George Mason University and Drexel University. A one time lawyer, I spent many years teaching in a community college where I was a Fulbright U.S. Scholar teaching in Estonia. I'm the author of Peace Jobs: A Student's Guide to Starting a Career Working for Peace (IAP 2016). I've been married to my best friend for over 31 years and we have two well adjusted adult children who teach me something new everyday. I live in Rockville, Maryland.

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