Amy AlbertNovember 10, 20224min
Housemates Charissa Lee Yi Zhen ’23 and Robyn Wong Min Xuan ’23 met during International Student Orientation and became close friends living in the Womanist House together Spring 2021. Now they have one more thing in common – they are the student recipients of the social justice award named for Peter Morgenstern-Clarren ’03, a social justice activist. However, their journeys to activism took different paths­—one developed their passion long before they came to Wesleyan and the other discovered it while on campus. Wong explained that while she learned leadership in high school, “Coming to the U.S. and specifically Wesleyan awakened…

Olivia DrakeJune 2, 20227min
Last fall, while working as the lead production assistant for WesWorks, a performance featuring Wesleyan facilities staff, Erin Byrne '24 became acquainted with Victor Ignacio Rosario— a custodian at Wesleyan who is contracted through SMG. Rosario, who primarily works in Exley Science Center and the Science Library, allowed Byrne to job-shadow him and in return, Byrne gained a deep appreciation for his day-to-day responsibilities. "Victor is a vital and enthusiastic member of the Wesleyan community," Byrne said. "Especially during the pandemic, keeping communal spaces on campus clean constantly was difficult and necessary, and Victor helped me realize just how much…

Steve ScarpaAugust 13, 20214min
Assistant Professor of Government Alyx Mark’s aspiring law students arrived at her new service-learning class with a typical set of assumptions about how American courts work: Lawyers do most of the talking, decisions by the Supreme Court are followed to a tee by lower courts, and people who have legal problems tend to resolve them. However, most individuals' interactions with the law come through small civil actions—lawsuits, traffic court, and evictions, for example. For many people who live in low-income neighborhoods, not only is finding legal assistance difficult, but when they do access the law, often representing themselves in court,…

Olivia DrakeJanuary 15, 20211min
This month, Wesleyan is launching two new MOOCs (massive open online courses) on the Coursera platform. Enrollment for both classes is free of charge. Take Action: From Protest to Policy launches on Jan. 17 and is taught by Mary Alice Haddad, John E. Andrus Professor of Government, and Sarah Ryan, attorney and associate professor of the practice in oral communication. Jeffrey Goetz, associate director, Center for Pedagogical Innovation, also assisted with creating the course. (more…)

Christian CamerotaJune 12, 20202min
The recent death of George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man killed while being forcibly detained by police, has ignited the United States and brought issues of inequality and violence against black people to the forefront of the national consciousness. Alison Williams ’81, vice president for equity and inclusion/Title IX officer, and Wesleyan President Michael Roth '78 hosted a panel discussion on Thursday, June 11, titled “Toward an Anti-Racist Community,” featuring six alumni of color who discussed how to move beyond the pain and trauma of the current cultural moment toward constructive action. “What I hope is that this will be…

Randi Alexandra PlakeFebruary 16, 20202min
Aletta Brady ’15 saw the power in collective storytelling to launch social justice campaigns such as Black Lives Matters and the #MeToo movements. Knowing that these movements were successful because of the power of words, Brady connected the idea of storytelling to the climate crisis, launching a climate-justice organization that was recently recognized by the J.M. Kaplan Fund. The J.M. Kaplan Fund awarded Brady's Our Climate Voices the J.M.K. Innovation Prize for its use of digital storytelling as a new model in the environmental field. The prize is awarded biennially to 10 nonprofit and mission-driven for-profit organizations tackling America’s most…

Olivia DrakeSeptember 18, 20153min
Three experts and a Wesleyan student led a panel discussion on “After Charleston: Next Steps for the Movement for Social Justice” Sept. 17 in Memorial Chapel. The event was sponsored by the Allbritton Center for Public Life's Right Now! series. The talk featured Clemmie Harris, visiting assistant professor of African American studies; Tedra James ’18; activist and filmmaker Bree Newsome and Connecticut Bishop John Selders. (more…)

Olivia DrakeSeptember 9, 20153min
Three experts and a Wesleyan student will lead a panel discussion on “After Charleston: Next Steps for the Movement for Social Justice” at 8 p.m. Sept. 17 in Memorial Chapel. The event is sponsored by the Allbritton Center for Public Life. The talk will feature Clemmie Harris, visiting assistant professor of African American studies; Tedra James ’18; activist and filmmaker Bree Newsome and Connecticut Bishop John Selders. "The idea is to spur conversation with the audience about the killings in Charleston, reactions to killings, debate over the Confederate flag, and protests in Ferguson,” said Rob Rosenthal, director of the Allbritton Center for…

Olivia DrakeFebruary 1, 20136min
For more than a decade Wesleyan has celebrated the life of Martin Luther King, Jr. The celebration has taken various forms including prominent keynote speakers such as Johnetta Cole and Sonia Sanchez to a campus-based program where members of the faculty, staff and students read portions of King's "I Have a Dream" speech. Learn more about Shakti Butler and Wesleyan's annual celebration online here.

Olivia DrakeApril 17, 20125min
Education reform, conflict resolution and confronting racial segregation are among the topics to be discussed at the fourth annual Social Justice Leadership Conference (SJLC) on April 21. SJLC is a collaborative effort which provides a space for students, student groups, community members, alumni, faculty, and staff to discuss social justice and to learn and refine leadership skills. SJLC seeks to empower its participants to create change by applying the skills and knowledge acquired during the conference. Students, student groups, alumni, community members, faculty and staff facilitate sessions in their area of interest or expertise. Sessions focus on leadership skills that…