Friday, March 11, 2011

Hofstra Happenings: Center for Civic Engagement Presents Day of Dialogue VIII: Public Issues in a Global World

For the eighth time since 2004, Hofstra’s Center for Civic Engagement presented an entire day of discussion with students, faculty, staff and special guests addressing key public policy issues and challenges.  Day of Dialogue VIII: Public Issues in a Global World addressed timely topics, such as immigration, the economy and the proposed Muslim cultural center near the former World Trade Center site.

One of the main themes of the day, immigration, was addressed in three separate sessions.  Freelance journalist Froylán Enciso Higuera led a morning discussion titled Drug Wars in Mexico.  In the evening, Hofstra’s WRHU-88.7 FM conducted a special town hall meeting and panel titled From the Border Wall to the Classroom, Arizona to Patchogue: Immigration as a Human Rights Issue, hosted by Mario Murillo, associate professor in Hofstra’s Department of Radio, Television, Film. On the final event of the day, Who Killed Marcelo Lucero? was performed by Teatro Experimental Yerbabruja. The play was based on the 2008 murder of an Ecuadorian immigrant in Patchogue, New York.

In addition to the topic of immigration, Day of Dialogue VIII included a wealth of other newsworthy discussions. Park 51: A Mosque at Ground Zero? featured Hofstra professor and Religion Dispatches associate editor Hussein Rashid, Fordham University professor Father Patrick Ryan, and Rabbi Leonard Schoolman of the Quest Center for Spiritual Inquiry, Park Avenue Christian Church.  Also that day, former members of the military led the panel Telling in Living Color: Gay Veterans of Color Talk About Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.

“We introduced Day of Dialogue in 2004 as a response to faculty and students’ desire to bring serious issues to the forefront in an open dialogue environment,” said Cynthia Bogard, Hofstra professor and director for the Center for Civic Engagement.  “This year, we felt that immigration should be addressed, and we decided to use journalism, a town hall meeting format and performance as ways to get citizens to think seriously about this issue.”


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