HCC Event Gives Peace Studies a Chance


HCC Event Gives Peace Studies a Chance

Media Contact: Matthew Fischer

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. (March 14, 2018) — A noted international peacemaker will keynote an interdisciplinary conference on building bridges that foster and facilitate understanding and cooperation that transcend national borders.

Dr. Amada Benavides de Perez, president of the Bogata, Colombia-headquartered Schools of Peace, will be the featured speaker at the 2018 Peace Building Institutes at Connecticut Community Colleges. The event, which includes lectures, workshops and a panel discussion, will take place April 3-5 at Housatonic, Gateway and Norwalk Community Colleges (see accompanying schedule).

The events are sponsored in cooperation with the Interdisciplinary Peace, Collaboration and Conflict (IPCC) Certificate program at Gateway Community College. The initiative promotes knowledge and skills to help students build and sustain a culture of non-violence in their communities.

Director of the Fundacion Escuelas de Paz in Bogata, Dr. Benavides de Perez is also an officer in the Geneva, Switzerland-based High Commission on Human Rights and a member of the Advisory Board Global Campaign on Peace Education, the Hague Appeal for Peace.

At HCC, Dr. Benavides de Perez will conduct an April 5 discussion and workshop on “Creating Curriculum and Training Teachers K-University in Peace-Building” for faculty, staff and community educators. The event, scheduled for 2-3:30 p.m., is sponsored by the Center for Teaching. For particulars contact .

Carol Brutza, a humanities and social-science professor at Gateway Community College in New Haven, helped to organize both the school’s Interdisciplinary Peace, Collaboration and Conflict (IPCC) Certificate and the 2018 Peace Building Institutes programs. The 15-credit IPCC curriculum spans academic departments including humanities, philosophy, anthropology and human services.

“We’ve been involved in the peace-education business for quite a while — about seven years,” Brutza explains. Many students involved in the certificate program are majoring in human services, anthropology and social work, she adds.

The April event “is part of a larger network of peace-education groups around the world sponsoring conferences and hosting institutes” such as next month’s community-college event, Brutza adds.

Keynoter Benavides de Perez has been an active observer and participant in her native Colombia’s protracted civil war, as well as an advocate for peace education in her native country and the United States. “Amada has been very influential in building up a whole peace curriculum in [kindergarten] through 12 schools around the country and at the university level,” Brutza explains.

See accompanying article for event schedule. All events are free and open to the public. For additional information contact Carol Brutza at or phone 203-285-2109.

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