Poverty Education Center
Poverty Education Center Blog

Poverty Education Center Blog

  • March PEC Update

    Posted by Paul DeWater on 3/10/2014 09:13:54 AM

    The PEC's roster of events continued to grow! As part of SU's International Week celebration in January, the PEC sponsored several campus gatherings. A packed room attended "From Harm to Home," in which refugees from Myanmar and other countries shared stories of leaving their homes, surviving as a displaced person, and adjusting to life in the United States. In another I-Week event, Professors Audrey Hudgins and Serena Cosgrove discussed how education abroad can help the poor, offering their advice on how students can make their international experiences meaningful for social justice. The PEC was a co-organizer for a sell-out concert by the Filipino-American pop star AJ Rafael. The concert was held to show solidarity with people in the Philippines, and proceeds went to benefit the School of the SEA (Sea and Earth Advocates), a leading environmental education organization whose facilities were devastated by Typhoon Haiyan. Other PEC productions included a presentation on gender and conflict in the Great Lakes region of Africa by a leading scholar of African development, and a panel on careers in international development featuring speakers from PATH, USAID, and the Seattle International Foundation. To learn about the PEC's events, please visit the Poverty Education Center Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/povertyeducationcenter.

    New Civil Rights Program in Development

    Posted by Paul DeWater on 3/10/2014 09:12:25 AM
    Washington State is failing. Its education system received an "F" in educating students about the American civil rights movement, according to a 2012 report by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Now the state's universities and colleges are mobilizing to address this problem. In January, Professors Emily Lieb and Ben Curtis attended a conference at Whitman College in Walla Walla on how higher educational institutions can partner with K-12 schools to improve teaching about the civil rights movement. Matteo Ricci College's Poverty Education Center will be collaborating with the University of Washington, Seattle Pacific University, and Seattle Central Community College on a new program to send undergraduates into middle school and high school classrooms to give lessons on civil rights history. Adapting a model pioneered by Whitman, Matteo Ricci students in the Bachelor of Arts in Humanities for Teaching degree will be trained in essential content for civil rights history, and will then share their knowledge and teaching experience with students in local schools. This innovative program, with its promising partnership between multiple universities and schools, is currently being developed, and is scheduled for launch next year. 

    Compassion, poverty, and education

    Posted by Benjamin Curtis on 3/2/2014 02:02:26 PM

    I've long thought that compassion and empathy were key for truly understanding poverty. If you have no compassion for people who are poor, then it's unlikely that you will care about their problems, or about the problem of poverty in the world. The big question is, how to inculcate that compassion in people who don't already feel it? How can poverty education encourage empathy, and thereby spur both understanding and action about poverty?

    Those questions need big answers. Nicholas Kristof offers a few thoughts on them a propos of a recent column on low-income Americans that elicited some uncompassionate responses from his readers.

    "There is an income gap in America, but just as important is a compassion gap. Plenty of successful people see a picture of a needy child and their first impulse is not to help but to reproach.

    To break cycles of poverty, we have the tools to improve high school graduation rates, reduce teen pregnancies and increase employment. What we lack is the will to do so."

    Read the whole article



    Jesuit Universities Engaging Poverty: Perspectives from Seattle and Managua

     On May 11th, the Poverty Education Center hosted "Jesuit Universities Engaging Poverty: Perspectives from Seattle and Managua." The event brought together students, faculty, staff, and community members to hear from Seattle University and la Universidad Centroamericana about how they were engaging poverty in their communities. 

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