The College of New Rochelle Creates Blueprint to Re-Focus Human Rights Curriculum
- Conference Offers Examples of How to Integrate Fundamental Issues
Into Core Curriculum -
NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y., Oct. 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The College of New Rochelle's (CNR) School of Arts & Sciences will host a one-day conference on October 12, 2001, entitled, "Initiating Human Rights Education Across the Undergraduate Curriculum." At a time when academic institutions are searching for ways to infuse curricula with themes of human rights, CNR's International Studies Program and the Modern Languages Department have invited regional educators to examine its newly expanded human rights curriculum that prepares college students to understand an increasingly interwoven global community. The shock of recent events underscores the urgency and necessity for such a new and dramatic academic approach to liberal arts education. At the conference a panel of leading educators will demonstrate how CNR is mainstreaming human rights themes into its core curriculum. Headlining the event, which is free and open to the public, is a keynote address by Dr. J. Paul Martin, Executive Director of Columbia University's Center for the Study of Human Rights, entitled "Teaching Human Rights after the WTC (World Trade Center)." According to Dr. Anne McKernan, Associate Professor of History at CNR, "To many students, the concept of human rights is confined to far away images of refugee camps and civil wars, when in reality, the subject is often much closer at hand. As communications and economic cooperation bring world communities ever closer, we feel that the most important contribution that we can make as educators is to instill a more complete understanding of the global environment among students." Funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, CNR initially developed 7 diverse undergraduate courses tied together by the central theme of human rights. The courses were drawn from broad fields, such as languages, developmental psychology, and narrow subjects such as international law and organizations, and global perspectives on women's rights. During this academic year the curriculum will expand to a total of 14 courses. Among the professors and courses that will be discussed on October 12 will be: -- Human Rights in the Twentieth Century, Dr. A. McKernan: Are human rights universal, or are they a western cultural construct imposed on the global community? This course invites students to integrate and synthesize their knowledge applying it to timely issues affecting the global community: ethnic cleansing, child labor, war crimes, nation- building and women's equality. -- Francophone Africa in Films: Cultures & Human Rights, Dr. A. Beauzethier: An introduction to some cultures of French-speaking Africa through African films. This course will also focus on cultural standards and practices that implement or deny the principles of human rights. -- Developmental Psychology, Dr. A. Ferrari: This course presents analysis of human development from conception to death, with emphasis on biological, social and cultural influences. Special attention will be given to human rights as they apply to the developmental stages of our life spans. Students will learn what human rights are and will be able to identify when such rights are being denied. -- Global Perspectives on Women's Rights, Dr. J. Gordon: Course will focus on selected issues relating to women's human rights in different regions of the world. Students will learn about the scope of women's rights, ways in which these rights are ignored or violated, and some of the strategies proposed and/or implemented to further the rights of women globally. Attention will also be given to media coverage of women's rights issues and the impact of the media in highlighting women's human rights topics. -- Spanish Caribbean Literature, Dr. M. Perez: Columbus's dreams of gold dust . . . the cut off hands of Amerindians . . . the fractured coral reefs of Puerto Rico . . . the song of rebel students and the coqui frog . . . the subversiveness of "La cucaracha" discovering the mask of conquest. The course will focus on border zones of conquest, dislocation, separation, and fragmentation. -- Seminar: Ellison and Morrison, Dr. N. Fitch: The course investigates representational fiction and nonfiction of these American writers and thinkers. Ellison and Morrison confront centuries-long human rights issues of African-Americans that include racism, colorism, classism and sexism. -- International Law and Organizations, Dr. D. McCarthy: In an age of rapid globalization, part of the globalizing process is the extension of the idea of "human rights" around the world. This idea forms part of an international drive toward democratization and human emancipation. However, human rights discourse faces some difficult questions. Four that we will examine in this course are: 1) What is the source of human rights? 2) Are human rights universal? 3) How can human rights be exercised? 4) How can international organizations protect these rights? In addition, the Spring 2002 semester's courses will include: Environmental Justice; Testimonial Narratives in Latin America; Children's and Family Rights: a Global Perspective; Justice; Multinationals, Ethical Issues and Human Rights; French-speaking Caribbean: Culture and Human Rights; Human Rights, a 20th Century Global Issue. It is hoped that other academic institutions will find inspiration in these courses to develop their own strategy to address human rights. The October 12, Program includes: -- 9:30 a.m.-10:00 a.m. - Keynote Address -- 10:15 a.m.-11:30 a.m. - Human Rights in the Social Sciences Curriculum, Panel Discussion -- Dr. A. McKernan, Associate Professor of History -- Dr. D. McCarthy, Associate Professor of Political Science -- Dr. A. Ferrari, Assistant Professor of Psychology -- Dr. J. Gordon, Associate Professor of Social Work -- 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m. - Responses to Campus-Based Human Rights Education, CNR Student Panel. -- 1:15 p.m.-2:15 p.m. - Human Rights Through Literature and Culture Studies, Panel Discussion -- Dr. A. Beauzethier, Associate Professor of French -- Dr. N. Fitch, Associate Professor of English -- Dr. M. Perez, Associate Professor of Spanish -- 2:15 p.m.-3:00 p.m. - An Approach to Human Rights Education Abroad, Student Panel from the International Human Rights Exchange -- 3:00 p.m. - 3:15 p.m. Closing Remarks About CNR The first Catholic college for women in New York State, The College of New Rochelle was founded in 1904 by the Ursuline Order. Today, it comprises the all-women School of Arts & Sciences, and three schools which admit women and men: the School of New Resources (for adult learners), the School of Nursing and the Graduate School. The main campus of the College is located in lower Westchester County, 16 miles north of New York City. The College maintains six other campus locations in New York City. MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT - Click Here http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X18821585
SOURCE The College of New Rochelle
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