Human Rights and Conflict Resolution Symposium

Two-Day Event to be Held at Both FDU Campuses in October

Teaneck and Madison, NJ (September 21, 2006) — For two days in October, Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Office of Global Learning will sponsor a major symposium on human rights and conflict resolution.

More than 50 leading human rights practitioners and academics from several universities will come together on October 17 and 18. “Through keynote addresses, plenary lectures and multiple workshops, this symposium will deepen knowledge and inspire activism concerning the most compelling issues of our times,” said Elise Salem, associate provost for global learning.

Topics to be addressed include human rights and the war on terrorism, child soldiers, the realities of torture, religious values and human rights, peacemaking strategies for Israel/Palestine, genocide in Darfur, international and local aspects of sex trafficking, the truth and reconciliation process, health issues and human rights, obstacles to political asylum among many others. Student representatives from campus organizations will lead four workshops.

“The protection of human rights and the resolution of violent conflict are urgent concerns in today’s world,” said Joseph Chuman, the symposium organizer and a faculty member at FDU. “Recognizing these concerns, Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Office of Global Learning is sponsoring this symposium. This is the first time Fairleigh Dickinson has hosted an event of this magnitude on this topic,” he said.

Keynote addresses will feature Kenneth Roth, Executive Director, Human Rights Watch on “Human Rights,” and Ibrahim Agboola Gambari, Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, United Nations on “Conflict Resolution.”

Reed Brody, Advocacy Director, Human Rights Watch, will address the war on terrorism and its consequences for human rights, while Kenneth Cain, author and former U.N. Peacekeeper in Somalia, Cambodia, Rwanda and Liberia will focus on “Peacekeeping Without Illusions: My Role as a U.N. Peacekeeper.” Former child slave Simon Deng, a spokesperson on Darfur genocide, will share his experiences and expertise. He has served as an adviser to President George W. Bush.

Attendees will be able to select workshop presentations that range from Carol Prendergast, director of operations, Bellevue/New York University Survivors of Torture Clinic, on “The Realities of Torture, Personal and Political” to Michael Santoro, professor of international business at Rutgers University on “China, Censorship and Internet Freedom.” Ed Barocas, legal director, ACLU of New Jersey, will lead a workshop on “The War on Terrorism and the Erosion of American Freedoms.”

Keyla Rodriquez, victims specialist, Victims Service, FBI, Newark, N.J., Office and Carol Smolenski, executive director, ECPAT-USA head a session on international sex trafficking globally and in our backyard while Anna Kushner, Freedom to Write Program, PEN American Center; Pierre Mujomba, award-winning Congolese playwright, focuses on the persecution of writers.

The Symposium opens Tuesday, October 17 at FDU’s College at Florham, Madison, NJ. The second day of presentations and discussions, on Wednesday, October 18, will be held on FDU’s Metropolitan Campus, Teaneck, NJ.

On Tuesday at the College at Florham, the Symposium begins with registration from 12:30 p.m.-1 p.m. in the Great Hall of the Mansion. The activities will conclude with dinner at 7:15 p.m. On Wednesday at the Metropolitan Campus, registration will be from 9:30 a.m.-10 a.m. in the Lobby of Dickinson Hall on the Hackensack side of the campus. The final session will conclude at 6 p.m. The complete conference packet will be available at registration.

The symposium is free of charge to all high school and college students and faculty members from the region. The general community is invited to participate and can register for either day for a fee of $30, or can attend both days for $50. Meals will be provided.

A brochure outlining all sessions is available on line or via regular mail. Because seating is limited for plenary sessions, those interested in attending should register.

For more information on this symposium, or to register, call 201-692-7360 or visit

Fairleigh Dickinson University

Gretchen Johnson

Office of Public Relations
Fairleigh Dickinson University
1000 River Road
Mailstop H-DH3-15
Teaneck, NJ 07666
(201) 692-7032

285 Madison Avenue
Mailstop M-MS0-01
Madison, NJ 07940
(973) 443-8661

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This release authored with FDU Pagetoaster.