Top CJP News of 2018

This year’s top news stories from EMU’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding honor treasured professors and alumni, celebrate impactful work, and connect us to the challenging issues of the day.

The EMU News site is one of the most-visited pages on the EMU website, with readers coming from all the countries in the world but Tonga and French Polynesia (so if you know of someone who lives there, encourage them to check us out!). We can thank many of our CJP alumni and friends for that global reach!

To read the top news stories from our general EMU news feed, click here.

Also take a moment to enjoy our Top Photos of 2018, curated by photography and videography manager Andrew Strack.

To stay in touch with what’s going on campus and with our alumni around the world, subscribe to our weekly news digest.

Top Facebook Post

Seeing Ram Bhagat and his son Shyamuu drumming is best enjoyed live, but a February 2 video post featuring their interactive performance during SPI Community Day was enjoyed 8,504 times [we’re sharing the Youtube link instead of the Facebook link so everyone can enjoy the video]. Social media posts are measured in “impressions,” or the total number of times users saw the post, so this means, among other possibilities, that at least 8,504 people saw the video – or at least the video was enjoyed multiple times by the same people, as definitely happened in our marketing and communication office. 

Editor’s Pick: Iraqi academics gather for conflict analysis training

On a regular basis, EMU’s editorial staff cover from afar events they wish to be at in person. This was one such event, a gathering of Iraqi academics to learn and practice conflict analysis skills in preparation for their own curriculum development. The article shared the group’s multidisciplinary and multicultural collaboration towards what they hope will be a peacebuilding curriculum for Iraqi university students. We hope to share more inspiring news about this CJP-facilitated effort in the future!

All-Time Greatest Hit: Mark Loving on ‘Loving’

By far the most viewed article of the last three years (10,000 plus hits) is this 2016 profile of then-sophomore Mark Loving, who graciously shared about the legacy of his great-grandparents, Richard and Mildred Loving. The Virginia couple went to the U.S. Supreme Court to defend their right to marry and live together; their story is dramatized in the fall 2016 release “Loving.” The article averages more than 30 and as many as 50 views each day. Readership spikes around June 12, known as “Loving Day” in the United States, to commemorate the 1967 ruling by the Supreme Court to disband all anti-miscegenation laws. Mark is now a senior and set to graduate this spring.

Top Reads

1. MJ’s Scholarship Fund Grows

In the 12 months after the world lost United Nations peacebuilder M.J. Sharp ’05 in the Democratic Republic of Congo, friends and family raised enough money to present the first award from the MJ Sharp Peace and Justice Endowed Scholarship. Congolese peacebuilder David Nyiringabo Mazimpaka began studies at CJP in August. (989 views)

2. Leymah Gbowee’s Honorary Doctorate

The Nobel Prize Laureate and 2011 CJP graduate was honored with EMU’s first honorary doctorate. Her commencement speech, titled “Urgently Needed! Defenders of Peace and Justice,” was later selected as one of The Nation’s top 10 addresses. (894 views)

3. CJP invites Congress to SPI

CJP graciously opened its doors and extended a warm welcome to leaders of Congress to learn more about circle processes after a senator used a talking stick in negotiations. “Ultimately, it would benefit our nation to have all members of Congress engage in circle processes,” said SPI director Bill Goldberg. The invitation stands, says executive director Daryl Byler. (882 views)

4. From Hollywood to the KKK: Horizons Luncheon speakers draw interest

The 2018 SPI Horizons Luncheon featured a unique lineup of fascinating speakers, including civil rights attorney Ari Wilkenfeld, who represents several high profile sexual harassment cases; Daryl Davis, race relations and KKK expert; CJP’s Peacebuilder of the Year Annette Lantz-Simmons; and Tiffany Fitzhenry, a media activist. (722 views)

CJP post-graduation ceremony, May 6, 2018.

5. CJP’s 2018 graduates

The smiles are always luminous and the love basically jumps off the screen in this annual coverage of the CJP post-graduation gathering in Martin Chapel (or maybe the 2018 grads had a huge fan club?!). This was also the #2 Facebook post with 7,393 impressions.

If you’re out there in the world and in need of a few feel-good moments, find a Flickr photo album from this spring event: Even if you just know faculty and staff, the smiles will remind you that you are loved and supported by your always-growing CJP family! (621 views)

6. Alumni help guide church name change process

As communities across the United States confront Civil War legacies, Barbara Robbins MA ’11 and The Reverend James Isaacs MA ’10 helped one church congregation in Virginia through a long, difficult process of analyzing their history and the meaning of their name: R.E. Lee Memorial Episcopal Church, named after the general of the Confederacy. The church is now Grace Episcopal Church. (571 views)

7. Historic Use of RJ in North Carolina

YoungJi Jang MA ’18 participated in her practicum at the Restorative Justice Clinic (RJC) at Campbell Law School in Raleigh, North Carolina, and experienced history being made. RJC and Jang were involved in facilitated dialogue in a high-profile felony case involving a shooting that injured a child but ended in restitution for the victim and her family and community service – but also forgiveness, “tears of happiness” and hugs. (480 views)

8. Mosaic Theater Company of D.C. performs at EMU

A preview of the Mosaic Theater Company of D.C.’s weekend performances made the top articles of 2018. The performances, free to the public, were subsidized by a generous donation from benefactors the late James and Marian Payne. Donations supported scholarship funds for EMU theater students and for female peacebuilders from the Middle East to attend graduate school in conflict transformation. (460 views)


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