June 9: Rockaway Beach Clean Up With 4Ocean

On Sunday, June 9th, Peace Boat members joined the Ocean and Climate Youth Ambassadors in taking part in the World Oceans Day beach clean up hosted by 4Ocean at Rockaway Beach. 4Ocean was co-founded by Andrew Cooper and Alex Schulze after they personally experienced the severity of ocean pollution in Bali, Indonesia. From this experience, Cooper and Schulze decided to develop an organization that could use simple fishing techniques, such as a boat and nets, to clean up garbage on beaches. 4Ocean has removed more than 4,600,000 pounds of trash from the ocean and coastlines, operating in multiple countries and employing nearly 150 people. Along with the Rockaway beach clean up, 4Ocean came onboard Peace Boat June 7 and 8 to take part in celebrating World Oceans Day. Here, the organization was able to share the work they continue to do with UN and Peace Boat partners.

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4Ocean volunteers sort beach garbage at Rockaway Beach

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All the garbage 4Ocean volunteers collected from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

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4Ocean displays upcoming Peace Boat Ecoship plans

This post was written by Gabrielle Clark and published by Arleigh Rodgers (Intern from Peace Boat US).

June 8: Peace Boat Celebrates World Oceans Day Aboard Ocean Dream Ship

On June 8, Peace Boat welcomed performers, film directors, interactive exhibitions, educational and cultural workshops, and keynote speakers onto its ship, the Ocean Dream, for United Nations World Oceans Day. The event took place on a day dedicated to celebrating the world’s oceans and raising awareness of their global benefits.

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Peace Boat is an NGO that holds Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations (UN) and whose dedication to peace, sustainability, and global education is exhibited through its ship’s Global Voyages — three-month-long excursions to 20 countries around the world. The Ocean Dream is currently on its 101st voyage, where it departed from Yokohama, Japan, on April 20th.

This year’s World Oceans Day focused on the theme “Gender and the Oceans.” Women filmmakers, speakers, and performers on board highlighted the specific impact climate change has on women around the globe. The day-long, informative celebration also welcomed organizations such as the Fabien Cousteau Ocean Learning Center, 4Ocean, and PangeaSeed.

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Among the distinguished attendees were the Ocean and Climate Youth Ambassadors, a collective of young men and women from eight different Small Island Developing States. Their three-week stay on Peace Boat took them to Malta, Spain, Morocco, and the Madeira Islands, where they brought their fight against climate change and ocean degradation to the citizens and governments of the countries they visited.

Nathalia Iawen, an Ambassador from Seychelles, spoke about the direct impact youth activists have had in Seychelles’s community.

“I met a lot of 10-, 11-, 15-year-olds who were very passionate about what they do,” Iawen said. “They actually … had a project where they went to the beach and they were looking for microplastics. … They showed that through a video … to teach their schools about microplastics and how it’s everywhere. It’s not just in the water.”

Seychelles operates on a Blue Economy concept, which prioritizes the sustainable use of ocean resources for economic growth. The country has taken steps to limit its plastic waste, including a full ban of single-use plastic bags, cups, cutlery, and styrofoam boxes and a partial ban on plastic straws. Iawen said she believes a collective effort from youth activists, like the one in Seychelles, can ignite positive change.

“I told them to never let age or race, language or religion stop them from voicing out their opinion about what you believe in,” Iawen said. “If we all work together, we can make a difference, but it’s going to take a lot of us to make a difference,” she said.

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Peace Boat also hosted Ocean Talk Sessions, 30-minute-long panel talks about participating speakers’ efforts to protect the world’s oceans. The concluding Ocean Talk Session featured Fabien Cousteau from the Fabien Cousteau Ocean Learning Center and Liz Magee, Business and Operations Manager at Northeastern University at the Marine Science Center. In the panel, Cousteau said a better understanding of the world’s oceans is necessary for positive change.

“The human-ocean connection is an integral part of what we need to understand,” Cousteau said. “Everyone absolutely needs to have the fundamental understanding and connection with our ocean worlds.”

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Magee, diving safety officer at Northeastern University, was one of the first female aquanauts on Cousteau’s Mission 31, a 31 day research expedition in Cousteau’s underwater laboratory, Aquarius. In the panel, she spoke about being one of the first women to work on Aquarius, as well as of the inequalities women divers face in a male-dominated profession.

“We have bigger hurdles to overcome just because we are females, specifically in a realm that is dominated by males,” she said. “And so we try harder, we do harder, we’ll put in that effort, and we’ll get there, and we’ll show everybody.”

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A performance from the Honiya Yosakoi Dance Troupe was the afternoon’s concluding event, and the day was wrapped up by a final call to action with a group photo.

This post was created and published by Arleigh Rodgers (Intern from Peace Boat US).

June 7th Special Event: Global Youth Perspectives

On June 7th, in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Partnerships, the international NGO Peace Boat hosted a special event to create a platform for youth to share their voices regarding local initiatives for the Sustainable Development Goals. The event began with an introduction from Emilie McGlone, Director of Peace Boat US and facilitator of the event. A representative from the UN Office for Partnerships also spoke, introducing the 2030 agenda and the importance of youth engagement and partnerships with organizations like Peace Boat.

A large part of the panel was made up of the Ocean and Climate Youth Ambassadors, a delegation of eight young leaders from small island states in the Pacific Ocean, Indian Ocean and Caribbean. The Ocean and Climate Youth shared their stories from their island communities on the frontlines of climate change and ocean degradation, as well as their actions for oceans and climate. Khadija Stewart, one of the Ocean and Climate Youth from Trinidad and Tobego, shared how she uses her online blog to raise awareness and mobilize action regarding the serious problem of oil spills in her country.

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After hearing from all of the youth, CEO and founder of the Sustainable Ocean Alliance, Daniela Fernandez spoke about how she founded SOA at the age of nineteen to create a global platform where young people are included in the conversation. She explained how SOA is able to help helps young people amplify their ideas by giving them access to the resources they need. Fabien Cousteau was also a part of the panel, sharing insightful words about the importance of protecting our oceans.

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Along with the Ocean and Climate Youth Ambassadors and other panel members, Peace Boat was excited to have Tre Packard, the director and founder of PangeaSeed. Mr. Packard founded this internationally engaged non-profit organization back in 2009, where their collaboration with Peace Boat first began. Through PangeaSeed, local artists are given the opportunity to develop and create public murals to raise environmental awareness in communities all over the world.

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Through the Peace Boat World Oceans Day event, Mr. Packard described how PangeaSeed was able to share its story about its dedication to “utilize art and activism as key tools to campaign for precedential environmental issues and better ocean stewardship.” Currently, the organization is based out of Hawaii, but it continues to maintain a strong international presence. In closing remarks, Tre Packard expressed his excitement and gratitude for the two-day long event saying, “The collaboration and love for the oceans came full circle with World Oceans Day 2019 in New York City.”

This post was created and published by Arleigh Rodgers (Intern from Peace Boat US).

United Nations World Oceans Day June 7 Celebration

The 2019 United Nations World Oceans Day Celebratory Event was presented by The Office of Legal Affairs, Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, and Oceanic Global.

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2019 United Nations World Oceans Day, June 7, at the United Nations

The event began with opening remarks from João Miguel Ferreira de Serpa Soares, the Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and United Nations Legal Council, who noted the importance of the oceans that “connect and sustain us,” as well as this year’s theme, “Gender and the Ocean.” Moderator Lea d’Auriol, founder and executive director of Oceanic Global, then introduced Åsa Regnér, the UN Women Deputy Executive Director.

Ms. Regnér highlighted the various dimensions of gender equality and the importance of the Sustainable Development Goals, especially goals five and fourteen, gender equality and life below water respectively. She noted the importance of including societies, such as women and those suffering from poverty, in decisions around issues that directly affect their everyday lives — for example, giving people from small island nations a voice in decisions about combating rising sea levels. We need to “engage dynamic audiences around ocean conservation,” Ms. Regnér concluded, in order to make effective and positive change.      

Judith Swan, International Consultant on the Law of the Sea and Fisheries and Law and Initiator of World Oceans Day, spoke next, asking the question: How do we reap the benefits from the ocean and protect it at the same time? Ms. Swan spoke of the challenge of gender-based solutions and proposed that women need to be empowered, especially in areas like the maritime community.

Moderator Mariasole Bianco, Professor of Environmental Communication and Dissemination at the Università degli Studi di Genova and Founder and President of Worldrise, introduced a performance on Gender and the Ocean in Pacific Mythology. Hinano Teavai-Murphy, Associate Director of the University of California Berkeley’s Gump Research Station and Founder of Te Pu Atitia, and Eparama Qerewaqa, Project Officer at the Alliance for Future Generations and one of the Climate Youth Ambassadors onboard Peace Boat, shared stories of mythology from their home nations in the Pacific, highlighting how for generations the ocean has been what gives people life.

Next, Kudzi Victorino Dykman, President of Ocean Revolution and Bitonga Divers shared stories from her childhood growing up on an island in the middle of Inhambane Bay in Mozambique. Ms. Dykman’s spoke about her inspiring journey to become the first female East African PADI scuba instructor and the first woman president of the marine conservation group Bitonga Divers.

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Ms. Dykman speaking at the UN events.

Anne de Carbuccia, founder of One Planet One Future, and Jorge Manuel Gomez Poot, director at Elementum, spoke next. They shared a short video from their project of conservation and empowering women and youth in Mexico. Aunofo Havea, Sea Captain and Founder of Tonga Voyaging Society, continued with messages about the importance of igniting pathways for women and youth by sharing her journey.

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The women part of the ocean conservation efforts in Mexico spoke at the UN through a pre-filmed video, as they were denied entry into the United States to speak in-person at the event.

Shannon Service, ocean journalist and filmmaker, introduced a short video from her new film Ghostfleet, which shows the harsh realities of forced labor at sea. Human trafficking surviver Tun Lin then spoke about his personal experience of working as a slave on a fishing boat for 11 years after being sold into slavery by one of his own friends. His words left a powerful impact on the audience.

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Ms. Service’s film Ghostfleet premiered on the day of the UN event.

Angelique Pouponneau, CEO of Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust and Co-Founder of SIDS Youth AIMS Hub, shared her experience growing up in Seychelles and the action she took as a young woman to empower youth through programs such as Blue Economy Internships.

The closing keynote speech by Sylvia Earle showed hope for our future as long as we change our ways. Dr. Earle pointed out how gender differences and the values of women around the world can be helpful in creating solutions to restore balance in the oceans.

It’s clear the event’s focus was on the importance of gender equality in ocean-related activities, policy making and management of the oceans — and the impressive and diverse group of speakers made these topics a strong call to action.

This post was created and published by Arleigh Rodgers (Intern from Peace Boat US).

Peace Boat founder, Yoshioka Tatsuya, speaks at the Explorers Club on June 6

To kick off World Oceans Day weekend, the founder of Peace Boat, Yoshioka Tatsuya, gave an inspirational speech at the Explorer’s Club on Thursday, June 6. The Club was established in New York in 1904, and since then members of the club have been responsible for many famous firsts. Some of these achievements include: First to the North Pole, first to the South Pole, and first to the summit of Mount Everest. Due to the Explorer’s Club’s dedication to scientific research of the natural environment, Peace Boat has been a long-time supporter and partner of all their work. Mr. Tatsuya discussed with the Explorers Club members how Peace Boat is actively trying to continue their own environmental exploration on the planet’s most environmentally sustainable cruise ship. The Peace Boat founder reassured that the new Ecoship would be ready to set sail by 2020, reducing carbon emissions by 40 percent!

exploers club june 6Founder of Peace Boat, Mr. Tatsuya, presenting Peace Boat’s Ecoship

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#SaveOurOcean is a hashtag to use on social media to raise awareness about climate change and ocean degradation.

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Peace Boat’s plans for the world’s greenest cruise ship, the Ecoship

This post was written by Gabrielle Clark and published by Arleigh Rodgers (Intern from Peace Boat US).

Introducing Our 2019 “Youth for the SDGs” Scholars

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Congratulations to the seven exceptional young scholars that have been awarded our “Youth for the SDGs” Scholarship to join our 100th Global Voyage.  We will be sailing from Ushuaia, Argentina to Valparaiso, Chile, passing through the Patagonia fjords from February 18th to the 28th. Our scholars are joining us from all over the world, including youth from Saint Martin island to New York City to Chile. As the Peace Boat sails from port to port, our scholars will bring their intensive, specialized knowledge of their field in sustainability to the conversations taking place on the boat. The scholars will have the unique opportunity to engage with other academics and activists from around the world, taking part in informative workshops while marveling at the Andes Mountains, glaciers and the green plains of Patagonia.

patagonia picture 9Experiencing the glaciers and mountains in the Southern hemisphere, the scholars will be reminded of the vastness of the ocean and of the land we inhabit. Over these ten days, participants will immerse themselves in the application of the UN Sustainable Development Goals through leading workshops, participating in cross-cultural dialogues, improving their leadership skills, and aiding in the advancement of responsible tourism and peace worldwide.

screen shot 2019-01-10 at 3.32.57 pmThis South American program will empower the scholars to specifically delve into the SDG13 for Climate Action and SDG14 for Life Below Water. We hope this program will enable the young scholars to take what they learn on the Peace Boat and bring it into their communities, empowering other youth to raise their voices for a more sustainable world. Our 100th Anniversary Voyage also celebrates our cooperation with local partners such as the environmental organization CODEFF – National Committee to Protect the Flora and Fauna of Chile to promote the campaign to declare Patagonia as a World Heritage Site recognized by UNESCO. For more information on Peace Boat and CODEFF, please visit their website here : www.codeff.cl

Learn more about our 2019 Youth for SDGs scholars and their program coordinator below.

14257483_10157567867030294_777450253933390469_o (1)Emilie McGlone has been working with Peace Boat since 2004 and currently is the United Nations liaison and Director of the New York-based office of Peace Boat US, a non-profit organization working to promote peace, sustainable development and respect for the environment through educational programs organized onboard the Peace Boat, a chartered passenger ship that travels the world on peace voyages. Peace Boat holds Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations and works in partnership with UN representatives, Nobel Peace Laureates and community leaders from around the world to create opportunities for international cooperation focused on environmental sustainability, cultural awareness and peace education. Emilie works to foster youth education and develops specific programs to learn about important global issues onboard the Peace Boat. Founded in 1983 and nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2008, Peace Boat has sailed on over 100 global voyages, carrying more than 60,000 people to more than 100 countries. Peace Boat has recently launched a new initiative to build an Ecoship to sail around the world, showcasing green technology and design, while inspiring positive change to radically reduce our carbon footprint. Peace Boat is a committed campaigner for the UN Sustainable Development Goals, sailing with the Global Goals Logo on the hull of the ship. Peace Boat’s Ecoship Project will build the world’s most sustainable passenger ship. A flagship for the SDGs, Ecoship seeks to address ocean acidification with reduced carbon emissions and significantly reduce marine pollution.

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Sara Van Eerde holds a Masters degree from the NYU Silver School of Social Work. During her undergraduate career at Muhlenberg College, Sara pursued a Psychology major and a self- designed Gender and Sexuality Studies major. Her focus took a global perspective when she researched machismo in Costa Rica, youth activism and climate change in Germany, and art therapy interventions at an orphanage while living in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Sara is currently living in New York City and works for Global Kids, where she teaches environmental justice through a program called the “Human Rights Activist Project,” leads a “LGBTQ+ and Allies” support group,  and is piloting a new mental health program at a high school in Queens. In her spare time, Sara loves adventurous activities such as flying through the air on aerial silks, rock climbing, hiking, and performing musical improv. Sara is deeply inspired by the work that Peace Boat does and is honored to share her passion and love for the ocean with them.

michaelMichael Valdivieso obtained a BA in international relations and political science (magna cum laude) at Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador (2016), and an MSC in Conflict Studies (Merit) from the London School of Economics in the UK (2018). He has participated in the National Model United Nations  New York from 2013 until 2018 both as delegate and as staff member. Michael previously served as a Public Information intern at UNHCR-Ecuador. He founded an international relations student association at his university in 2014, called Student Committee for International Affairs, where he served as president. He was the editor in chief of “A Different View,” an academic blog published by IAPSS, ending his 18-month mandate in September 2016. Additionally, as of December 2015, he serves as youth representative at a political think tank organized by Participación Ciudadana, one of the largest NGOs in Ecuador. Currently, he is one of the founders of Momentum Novum, a social business based in Germany that promotes sustainable development through advisory, education, and information services.

mareekaMareeka Dookie, born in Trinidad and Tobago and raised on the beautiful sunny island of Sint Maarten/Saint Martin is a creative young professional. She loves to travel, learn about different cultures, learn new languages, and gain worldly experiences. She prides herself on being a life long learner.  As an elementary school teacher, she enjoys working with children as they begin to unlock their knowledge and understanding of their inner powers and their ability to make positive and lasting impacts in the world. She holds a Bachelors of Arts in Spanish and a Masters of Teaching from Sacred Heart University in CT, USA. Currently Mareeka is focusing on recovery efforts in the lives of children on the island after the devastation of hurricane Irma on September 6th, 2017. She is working as a Programme Administrative Officer with UNICEF- Nederland  in Sint Maarten. She is beyond grateful for the opportunity to embark on the Peace Boat’s 100th Voyage focusing on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in Patagonia!

silviaSilvia Cantu Bautista is a junior at Middlebury College, majoring in Political Science with a minor in History. She speaks Spanish, English, and Portuguese. Born and raised in Mexico, she has previously lived in Victoria, Canada, where she spent two years of high school at UWC Pearson College. While at UWC, she took a course on Marine Science and conducted research on ocean acidification. She is passionate about Environmental policy and conservation, particularly concerning marine ecosystems. She is a PADI certified Advanced Scuba Diver and an avid photographer interested in climate change photojournalism. She hopes to become an advocate for climate justice and sustainability involved in the drafting and implementation of local and international environmental policy and adaptation plans. She is beyond excited to join PeaceBoat’s 100th voyage from Ushuaia to Valparaiso!

donovaneDonovane Tremor is a 27 year old professional photographer. He grew up as an island child, spending his life between the small island of St. Martin and Guadeloupe. He discovered his passion for photography at a young age, but pursued a Management and Marketing degree in Montreal and Guadeloupe. After graduation, he decided to follow his passion for photography, developing his specialization in landscape and architecture photography.  Most of his professional work focuses on the tourist economy between St. Martin, St. Barts and Anguilla.  He is enthusiastic about travel, specifically when he has the chance to discover new cultures from around the world. He is always ready for a new adventure!

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Carol McDonnell Schmidt is a geographer working at CODEFF, the oldest environmental nonprofit organization in Chile. She works specifically with biodiversity, in the IBA (Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas) program, trying to assess the status of birds for a more specific approach at protection initiatives within the context of climate change. Birds are a very important indicator of the health status of an ecosystem, and ecosystem conservation is the goal of her organization.  CODEFF continues to collaborate with Peace Boat to raise awareness about important environmental issues affecting the region and to promote the campaign to declare Patagonia as a World Heritage Site recognized by UNESCO.  Carol will share her knowledge about the important work that CODEFF is doing to make a positive difference for Climate Action and Ocean Conservation throughout Chile.

hansierHansier Rodriguez is a Dominican-American young man. He spent the first 12 years of his life in his native country, the Dominican Republic, before moving to the United States, where he eventually became a citizen. He is currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in Public & Nonprofit Administration with a second concentration in International Affairs at Rutgers University in Newark, New Jersey. Hansier considers himself a change agent and a social justice activist as well as a global citizenship advocate. One of his long-term goals is to become a polyglot. His leadership model is inspired by the following quote, “the most powerful thing a leader can do is to empower others.” Hansier is enthusiastic, resilient, and a resourceful collaborator. His greatest attributes are his integrity and maturity, both of which are surpassed by his desire to succeed and live to his fullest potential. He prides himself on being organized, having an outgoing personality that’s full of energy, and maintaining a positive attitude, all while staying self-reflective. He hopes to continue to innovate his community through the rest of his college and professional career with his determination and perseverance. 

This post was created and published by Maddie Clevenstine and Maria Jdid (interns for Peace Boat US).

Introducing Our Hollins University January 2019 Interns

 

maria headshotMaria Jdid is an International Studies major on the premedical track at Hollins University in Roanoke, VA. She is from Syria and is passionate about the intersection between politics and medicine. Maria believes that an International Studies major is preliminary for an aspiring surgeon who wants to serve communities dealing with issues of equity. Maria has been heavily involved in Model United Nations and Model Arab League and will be serving as Co-President in the upcoming spring semester. In 2018, she was a staff member for American Model United Nations in Chicago, IL. In her free time, Maria likes to draw anatomical structures and read news articles. This January, Maria
is thrilled to be focusing her efforts within the
Peace Boat on the Sustainable Development Goals.

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Harika Bommana is from Hyderabad, India. She is majoring in Communications and English with a concentration in creative writing at Hollins University in Roanoke, Virginia. Harika is passionate about activism and hopes to one day help raise awareness about issues regarding LGBTQ community, sexual assault, education and many more. She is looking forward to interacting with people from different backgrounds and cultures. In her free time, she likes to read and visit museums. She is excited to intern at Peace Boat and hopes to learn more about sustainability, human rights and peace.

maryMary Elisabeth Cochran is from Virginia Beach, VA and is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in International Studies and Spanish at Hollins University. Growing up with a father in the US Navy and in a city with a strong US Navy and NATO presence has greatly influenced how she has seen the world around her and created passion for international policy. After going to Hollins, she joined the Model Arab League team and has recently debated as a delegate on the Environmental Council. By working with Peace Boat, she hopes to gain a stronger understanding of NGO operations and the intricacies of environmental and social policy work, while focusing on peace and education.

picture1Shivani Karn is an international student from Nepal, currently studying Communication and International Studies at Hollins University in Virginia. She will be graduating in May 2020. Shivani has grown up in Nepal, Japan and India, along with recently spending a semester in South Africa as an exchange student. Shivani hopes to become a human rights lawyer with the UNHCR someday and wants to pursue Law after completing her undergraduate studies. Shivani is passionate about reading and will pick up any book on a political and historical topic. Shivani also enjoys traveling and being exposed to new cultures, and will grab any opportunity available to visit other countries.

 

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Maddie Clevenstine is a junior Gender and Women’s Studies major with a double minor in English and Art History at Hollins University. At Hollins, Maddie works as a tutor in the Writing Center, is the Head Editor of the University’s oldest literary magazine Cargoes and worked as a Student Success Leader her sophomore year. She is passionate about women’s health, education, and liberation. She is particularly passionate about the lives of LGBT+ women and wishes to spend her life working towards both the theory and praxis of liberation for all marginalized people. She is excited and honored to be interning at Peace Boat and can’t wait to learn more about how she can contribute to the goal of global peace. She believes everyone has the ability to impact positive global change.

 

This post was created and published by Maria Jdid