Welcome Session
Session A
Buffet Lunch and Keynote
Session B
Session C
Session D



Session E
Session F
Session G
Session H
Session I



Session J
Session K



Registration & Coffee


Welcome Session


Peace Education in Rwanda (A1 Panel)

Understanding Rwanda’s Challenges to Peace Education: The Role of Class and Ethnicity

Benedict Ngala (Montgomery College)

Gender and Power in Rwanda: A Critical Analysis of the Girls Get Equal Campaign

Kudakwashe Makundo (University of Anglia)

Can the Subaltern [T]each

Sarah Schmidt (Kent State University) and Sylvestre Nzahabwanayo (University of Rwanda)

Peace Building in the Classroom (A2 Workshop)

Ikram Toumi (Kent State University)

Cultural diversity is a significant source of conflict. People often perceive the "other's" cultural differences as a “threat” to their own social group. Intercultural communication is the study of the interactions between individuals/groups from different cultures. It focuses on developing awareness of how cultural differences affect how people interact and perceive each other leading to cultural understanding and acceptance, preventing conflicts from escalating to violence, and generating long term, fundamental peace.

This workshop will help educators include intercultural communication practices in their practice. The workshop will be divided into three parts; (1) understand cultural differences and identify problematic practices such as ethnocentrism. (2) Recognize the importance of “intercultural communication” and how it can foster peacebuilding. And, (3) provide the participants with practical tips to include intercultural communication teaching in their courses.


Buffet Lunch and Keynote


Peace Education in Rwanda (B1 Panel)

The Role of Natural Law in Promoting Peace Education in Rwanda

Denis Bikesha, University of Rwanda

Competition or Coordination Challenges: Reflections on Peace Education in Rwanda

Heli Phabyarimana (University of Rwanda)

The Path of Peace

Jacqueline Uwimana (Umuseke)

Promoting Peace through Social and Emotional Learning Competencies (B2 Workshop)

Davison Mupinga (Kent State University), Leon Mugabo (University of Rwanda), Melanie Kirin (Kent State University), and Emily Mupinga (Kent State University)

Social emotional learning (SEL) “is a methodology that helps students of all ages to better comprehend their emotions, to feel those emotions fully, and demonstrate empathy for others” (CASEL, para #3). In a blog on social, emotional learning and peace, Dr. Parada (nd) notes that social and emotional competencies, especially, self-awareness, self-management and social awareness, amongst others, lead to the development of peaceful societies.

Students who acquire SEL competencies are often self-aware, productive, can make positive, responsible decisions and can build positive relationships with others. This hands-on presentation will: 1. Briefly describe the benefits of SEL competencies & the different approaches to teaching SEL competencies; 2. Describe hands-on exercises/activities teachers or community leaders can use with students to develop self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and making responsible decisions; and 3. Share online resources dedicated to SEL competencies.




Inclusion of Peace Education in Curriculum (C1 Panel)

Formal Inclusion of Civic Studies in Childhood Education Curriculum in Restoring Peace

Nnamdi Anero (Ignatius Ajuru University of Education)

History Teachers’ Readiness for the Reintroduction of History in the School Curriculum in Osun and Oyo State in Nigeria

Matthew Oni (University of Ibadan)

Let’s Begin from the Very Beginning: Including a Social Justice-Based Anti-Bias Curriculum in the early Childhood Years

Anushi I Seneviratne (Santa Ana College/Cal Poly Pomona)

Analyzing Peace Education in the National Curriculum of Ghana

Timothy Amaglo-Mensah (University of Glasgow)

Ethical Dilemmas: Peace Education and Field Courses in Conflict-Affected Settings (C2 Panel)

Agnieszka Paczyńska, Susan Hirsch, Patricia Maulden, Leslie Dwyer

More educational institutions today place emphasis on incorporating field-based courses into the peace and conflict studies curriculum. By taking students out of the traditional classroom setting, such courses offer unique opportunities for student learning. In the growing field of peace and conflict studies, such field-based courses provide students with innovative ways to link theory to practice, as they create an environment where students experience the complexity of conflicts first hand and explore possibilities for conflict resolution.

At the same time, such field-based courses present a number of challenges in terms of course-design; development of partnerships with community-based organizations in contexts where courses will take place; student and instructor preparation, ethical dilemmas students and instructors may face in the field, as well as methods of evaluation and assessment.

The panel will explore questions such as: how do we ensure that we are working ethically with partners when we do field-based peace education? What does collaborative peace education look like? How do we co-create peace education with community-based organizations and/or respond to their needs, including for peace education itself?How can field-based peace education courses themselves contribute to bridging divides across multiple lines of difference at the local, regional and global levels? The panel will look to engage the audience in joint exploration of these questions.

Plural Agonism in Art: Alternatives to Conflict Resolution via Transformation (C3 Workshop)

Björn Arjun Das (Goethe University Frankfurt)

Aesthetics, or the way we see the world, has quite long been staved off as secondary or irrelevant to politics and peace conflict. However, with burgeoning research on the field increasing, the potential of aesthetics for centering as well as decentering our own perspectives, conflict resolution can gain an important dimension.

This crucial dimension – yet often overlooked by traditional peace conflict studies –departs from the point of asking: “Why do we see, what we see?” By posing this question in an interactive workshop format, the participants are asked to discuss what they perceive and reflect on where they assume these perspectival differences and towards other participants and themselves come from.


Community-Library Inter-Action (CLIA): A Process to Advance Peaceful and Sustainable Communities (D1 Workshop)

Clara Chu, Zoraida Mendiwelso-Bendek, and Peggy Nzomo (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Across the world, local communities are experiencing civic unrest, conflict, disconnectedness, among other challenges, which calls for communities to understand, reflect and act on commonly identified issues, and to develop community capacity building processes to advance community knowledge, intercultural understanding, empowerment and solutions.

Community-Library Inter-Action (CLIA), a project of the "Libraries for Peace" Initiative by the Mortenson Center for International Library Programs, responds to this need by supporting libraries to facilitate local dialogue and community action. CLIA is a process where libraries play a meaningful role in supporting community capacity building for social transformation. CLIA enables librarians to create space for community dialogue, and offer resources and support for deliberate community action for social change.

The CLIA workshop uses interactive methods for participants to: 1. Explore implementation of CLIA, enabling any type of library or other organization to strengthen its role in working WITH, not just FOR, communities; 2. Realign their thinking from being service providers and problem solvers to community connectors with the capacity to support shared goals and actions through the strengthening of community identity; and 3. Identify challenges and opportunities of CLIA in practice. Librarians, stakeholders and peace and change makers are invited to attend this workshop and learn to use the methodology to play a key role in developing peaceful and sustainable communities.

Peace Education and Conflict (D2 Panel)

Civil Society and Peace Education: A Case Study of the War in Sierra Leone

Edmond Kposowa (Future In Our Hands Sierra Leone)—(FIOSL)

The Role of Education in a Post-Conflict Region: The Case of the Great Lake Region

Mike Salumu Mukandirwa (Independent Researcher)

Wildlife as a Double-Edged Resource: Peace and Conflict

Joseph Serugo Ssalongo (Umoja Wildlife Conservancies of Uganda)—(UWCU)

Peace Education and Empowering Communities (D3 Panel)

Strengthening Women’s Community Leadership through Convergence Activities

Paul Bulambo (Association d’actions de Paix et de Développement Communautaire)—(APADEC)

Peace Education as a Bridge in Cultural Differences of Sexual/Reproductive Health Between Refugee Women and the European Healthcare System

Nena Mocnik (GRITIM—UPF Barcelona)

Stories in Conversation: Storytelling as Informal Peace Education and a Tool for Transformational Learning

Camille Tinnin, Sophia Lucente, and Isaac Halaszi (Kent State University)



Reconciliation in Post-Genocide Rwanda: The Intergenerational Dialogue in Perspective (E1 Panel)

Aggée Shyaka Mugabe and John Gasana Gasasira (University of Rwanda) and Landon Hancock (Kent State University)

This panel scrutinizes reconciliation aspects and realms, which are directly linked to intergenerational dialogue in post-genocide Rwanda and the way it relates to peacebuilding. The paper looks into existing approaches to promote dialogue around sensitive issues, such as genocide and its aftermath reconstruction process.

Such approaches include, but are not limited to community-based and young-people led peace education endeavors, peace and reconciliation spaces, trainings and other capacity building initiatives oriented towards achieving peace in post-genocide Rwanda. The interaction between parents/guardians and their dependents, particularly young people, is at the heart of this research.

Exploring Marginalized Identities Through Experiential Peace Education (E2 Panel)

Molly Merryman, Caraline Feairheller, and Isobel Day (Kent State University)

This panel explores three innovative models of experiential peace education, all of which explore ways of involving students in active learning about diversity, with a particular focus on marginalized sexualities and public engagement.

The first presentation addresses the concerning trend of legislators have attempted to restrict what teachers can discuss in the classroom and how anti-LGBTQ policy proposals would impact students and educators. The presentation will share strategies and resources on how educators can navigate the nuances of public policy and work to transform the classroom into a supportive environment that encourages participation from all students.

The next presentation emphasizes the importance of peace museums globally in the advancement of equity for marginalized communities and provides strategies for finding and using online museum materials in the classroom. It will focus on the Smithsonian’s African American Museum, the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, and the UK’s Queer Britain museum to explore various marginalized identities and strategies for incorporating museum visits into pedagogy.

The third presentation explores ways that teachers can involve students in community-based oral history interviews to expand understandings and contribute to local populations. This presentation will focus on students as researchers, and will address ethics and resources, as well as presenting examples of work. This panel will allow time for meaningful discussions/interactions and will provide attendees with resources and materials.




Never Again Rwanda’s Societal Healing and Participatory Governance Program: Results from Schooling and Non-Schooling Youth Peace Dialogues (F1 Panel)

Therese Seibert (Keene State College) and Joseph Nkurunziza (Never Again Rwanda)

Rwanda’s 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi resulted in over one million deaths. Given that this genocide was notably intimate and systematic, profound trauma lingers among those who experienced it. Transgenerational trauma also affects Rwanda’s youth thus challenging progress toward authentic and sustainable peace.

In response, Never Again Rwanda (NAR), a national peace-building organization, created its Societal Healing and Participatory Governance Program (SHPGP) whereby schooling and non-schooling youth participated in healing spaces with a trained psychotherapist to address trauma and work toward building sustainable peace in their communities.

Results of paired t-tests using data from pre and post-tests reveal a statistically significant decline among participants in post-traumatic stress and low self-esteem along with statistically significant increases in psychological resilience and readiness for social interaction, personal sharing, trauma expression, and daily life. Cohn’s D statistics document that the effect sizes are large. Hence, NAR’s SHPGP offers a model for promoting recovery and peace building among youth living in post-genocide and post-conflict societies.

Teaching Peace Amidst Conflict and Postcolonialism: A Roundtable Discussion with Education for Global Peace (F2 Panel)

Chris Davey (Strassler Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies, Clark University), Michael Minch (Utah Valley University—retired), Mercedes Somosierra (Argentinian lawyer and Peace Educator), Rajib Timalsina (Tribhuvan University), Cris Toffolo (Northeastern University in Chicago), Maria Paula Unigarro Alba (Beghof Foundation), and Regina Mutiru (National Cohesion and Integration Commission—NCIC—Kenya)

MerceEducation for Global Peace (EGP) promotes research and pedagogy in peace education. In our forthcoming edited volume Teaching Peace amidst Conflict and Postcolonialism (Cambridge Scholars Press, 2023) we examine countries experiencing conflict and postcolonial struggles, where peace education is applied. An effective program of peace education responds to these dynamics meeting global, urgent problems and opening up new opportunities for peacebuilding.

In this roundtable discussion featuring editors and authors from the book, we address the fundamental question of can peace be taught, especially where the scars of war and legacies of colonialism are entrenched in society? Drawing on four of our ten case study chapters: Colombia, Nepal, Northern Ireland, and Uruguay, including a discussant on Kenyan peace education, the roundtable will discuss a variety of policies, cultures, actors, and pedagogies.

Storytelling for Peace (F3 Workshop)

Apochi Owoicho (University of Sussex)

Stories help us to relate with the world around us, understand people and build meaningful connections. Through stories, we share passions, fears, sadness, hardships, and joys, and we find common ground with other people so that we can connect and communicate with them. We live in a world with endless possibilities and tools with which we can tell stories and we all can contribute to the peacebuilding process using available resources.

In Africa, stories are used to pass down wisdom, teach, inspire and build communities of shared values and identities. The Storytelling for Peace workshop is designed to equip participants with the understanding of storytelling, the power of storytelling to create change and useful storytelling tools available to everyone to tell stories.


Peace Pedagogies: Education as the Art of Becoming Human (G1 Panel)

Jo Westbrook and Angie Kotler (Sussex University) and Jean de Dieu Dusingize, HT (Umubano Academy)

This panel argues that education succeeds when children feel safe and secure – with one another, their teachers, and the context in which they learn. Such peacefulness is not a default way in which schools operate. The opposite is often the case, where pursuit of ‘excellence’ or ‘quality’ is paramount, attained through performative competitiveness. However, we argue that excellence, inclusion, equity and peace (building) can not only co-exist but mutually constitute a conducive environment in which all learners can achieve their full potential.

We illustrate this through vignettes from different country contexts; firstly, from the Second Chance accelerated learning programs for Out Of School Children in Ethiopia, with artistic representation of learning at its heart; its south-to-south transfer to Liberia where the very act of attending class is perceived by parents as peacebuilding, and Umubano Academy in Rwanda, built on partnership, community and teacher education for peace.

Using Adult Crossover Picture Books to Promote Critical Thought and Discussion on the Big Questions of Life (G2 Workshop)

Lauren Vogel, Debbie Rozner, and Dolores Elder (Kent State University)

Among life’s most basic but consequential questions are, “Who am I?” and “Who do others say I am?”. Wolf Erlbruch’s crossover picture book "Die Grosse Frage/The Big Question" (2005) explores answers to these questions from a wide range of outside perspectives. Our workshop will demonstrate how we use this high quality, authentic crossover picturebook in our English language classrooms to not only promote discussion skills but to enhance critical thinking, deep self-reflection, and critical self-awareness.

As educators of students from around the globe, we recognize the importance of promoting skills that enable all students to effectively and empathically participate in our ever-changing, diverse, and interconnected world. We believe that through the sophistication and complexity of real-world circumstances offered by crossover picturebooks, we are promoting the foundations of peace through awareness of self and empathy for others.

Our workshop will offer guidance on the use of "The Big Question" for promoting literacy and language skills including vocabulary development, pronunciation and grammar. Participants will take part in an activity which ties critical thought and literacy development into a personal and introspective reflection about how they understand themselves through the eyes of others.

Social-Emotional Learning for Youth Waging Peace (SEL4YWP) (G3 Workshop)

Dani (Unesco MGIEP)

This workshop will explore the Social and Emotional Learning framework while exploring the Digital Pedagogy framework. Attendees will create a contextual and relevant plan of implementation while utilizing and integrating social-emotional learning (SEL) and digital pedagogy frameworks for preventing violent extremism (PVE).

It is based on the experience of the UNESCO MGIEP in implementing its capacity-building initiative – the Social Emotional Learning for Youth Waging Peace course. After the workshop, the participants are expected to be able to understand and implement SEL and digital pedagogy frameworks for PVE in their specific contexts and needs.

Three main points of SEL that will be explored are self, others and systems. Three main points of digital pedagogy will be discussed: circumstances/contexts, resources, and implementations, including security, safety and variability. The workshop delivery method is critical and participatory, in which practice and self-discovery will be the main agenda of the workshop.




Peace Pedagogies (H1 Panel)

Teaching Future Mathematics Teachers: What Does Peace Have to Do With It?

Joanne Caniglia (Kent State University) and Jean Francois Manuraho (University of Rwanda)

The Mundia Innovative Peace Education Methodology

Munukayumbwa Mundia (Makerere University Rotary Peace Center)

Education for Positive Peace: Strategies to Empower Teachers

Emilie Munyakaz (A Partner in Education) and Jean de Dieu (Umubano Academy)

The Place of Peace Clubs in Peace Education

Maximilla Wandera (Peace (Amani) Clubs of Kenya)




Whole School Approaches to Peace (I1 Panel)

Comparative Study of Social Factors, School Environmental Safety, and Public Secondary Education Attendance in Kenya, Nigeria, and Uganda

Matthew Oni (University of Ibadan)

Socio-Emotional Learning and Digital Pedagogy-Based Peace Education: An Exploration and Reflection


Peer Mediation in School: Do Young People Support Peer Mediation?

Colins Imoh (University of Bradford)

PeaceJam (I2 Workshop)

Wisdom Addo (West Africa Centre for Peace Foundation, Africa PeaceJam)

This workshop will provide information on the PeaceJam programming across the globe with examples from its standards-based curriculum that explores the adolescent stories of the 14 Nobel Peace Laureates and the strategies they used to overcome problems in their lives and their communities. Through this age-appropriate curriculum, youth explore their own identities and reexamine the choices they make including their role models and the peer groups to which they belong.

Youth also develop leadership and problem-solving skills while engaging in service-learning activities and projects that address local needs with practical case study from Ghana, Liberia, Nigeria, and South Africa. The workshop will be interactive and showcase how the program is designed to meet the unique developmental and social needs of adolescent youth, and the challenges of adults that work with them, by fostering positive identity development, healthy peer relations, social responsibility, rule of law, democratic attitude, the promotion of acceptance and cultural diversity, avoidance of risky behaviors, communication skills, and tools for setting goals and overcoming challenges.



Peace Structures Towards Peacebuilding (J1 Panel)

Policy, Practice, and Peace Infrastructures: (Re)building Higher Education in Conflict Contexts

Ane Johnson (Rowan University)

The Role of Libraries and Library & Information Sciences (LIS) Professionals in Peace Education

Peggy Nzomo (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

Cultivating a Culture of Peace: Opportunities and Challenges for Youth Participation in Education for Peacebuilding and Prevention of Conflict in Universities and Colleges in Zambia

Gloria Hingoma (Zambian Peace, Conflict Resolution and Development Initiative)

Where and How? A Systematic Review of the Contributions to Peacebuilding

Adaobiagu Obiagu (University of Nigeria)

Mobile Arts for Peace (MAP) for Peace Education, Mental Health and Policy (J2 Panel)

Mobile Arts for Peace (MAP) Overview

Ananda Breed (University of Lincoln)

The Book of Life, Archiving Life

Gakire Katese Odile (Woman Cultural Center)—(WCC)

Visualising Peace

Tom Martin (Photographer), Eric Kabera (Rwandan Filmmaker), and Chaste Uwihoreye (Uyisenga Ni Imanzi)—(UNM)

Mobile Arts for Peace (MAP): Exploring Arts-Methods for Peace Education

Kirrily Pells (University College London), Ananda Breed (University of Lincoln), and MAP Youth Researchers




Environmental Education as More-Than-Human Peace Education (K1 Panel)

Elaine (Lan Yin) Hsiao (Kent State University), Walter Odokorwot (Umoja Wildlife Conservancies of Uganda), Rebeca Sandoval (Biodiversity Alliance), Fiston Ishimwe (Africanparks/Akagera National Park), and Ellen O’Connell (Farm Sanctuary)

Human-wildlife conflicts are said to exist when wildlife poses “a direct threat to the safety, livelihood and wellbeing of people. Retaliation against the species blamed often ensues, leading to conflict between groups of people about what should be done to resolve the situation” (IUCN SSC HWCTF, 2020). In principle, human-wildlife conflicts can also occur when humans pose a threat to other species and their safety, rights and wellbeing (e.g.,animal rights violations).

These types of disputes represent more-than-human conflict and the potential for more-than-human conflict resolution. Common approaches to human-wildlife conflict management can include barrier mechanisms to separate humans from other species, financial mechanisms to incentivize co-existence, and environmental education to raise awareness about the benefits of wildlife and how to better manage potential threats posed by wildlife (Hsiao, 2022).

While environmental education is a prominent aspect of human-wildlife conflict management, it is rarely ever framed as a form of peace education. This means there are opportunities for peace education to consider how its pedagogy and approaches may be shaped to enhance nonviolent relations between humans and other species, as well as how environmental education could incorporate goals of social justice and peaceful change that are foundational to peace education. This session proposes to reconsider environmental education as a form of more-than-human peace education and inquires how it could better embrace peace education to improve the ways we build positive peace between all species.

Using Text Clusters of High-Quality and Award-Winning Literature to Develop and Teach a Curriculum on Peace Education (K2 Workshop)

William Bintz (Kent State University)

This workshop 1) introduces the concept of text clusters, 2) shares a text cluster consisting of high-quality and award-winning literature on the topic of peace education, and 3) demonstrates instructional strategies that teachers can use in the classroom with this text cluster. Text clusters extend the notion of text sets.

A text set is a collection of books (12-15) that are interrelated in some way, e.g. theme, topic, idea, problem, etc. A text cluster is also a collection of books (12-15) that are interrelated in some way, but, unlike text sets, is organized around the notion of Way-In and Stay-In books. A Way-In texts are designed and used to generate student interest in a topic when no interest in that topic currently exists. Stay-In books are designed and used to maintain and extend student interest in a topic first introduced by a Way-In book and include a variety of different genres, fiction, historical fiction, nonfiction and informational, poetry, dramatic plays, etc.

A text cluster on Peace Education will be presented. In this text cluster, the Way-In text will be The Enemy: A Book About Peace Education (Cali & Bloch), a book that has been internationally recognized as high-quality with much power and potential to generate interest in peace education. Several Stay-In texts will also be presented. In addition, several research-based instructional strategies that teachers can use in the classroom will be demonstrated using the text cluster. The demonstrations will actively engage participants so that they experience the strategies rather than me just talking about them. Lastly, participants will write and share reflections on the workshop. Participant reflections will be used to help all participants hear new voices, start new conversations, and generate new inquiry questions about innovative approaches to teach peace education.





Interdisciplinary Approaches to Peace Education

Barbara Wien (American University)

This Peace Education workshop will prepare learners with the attitudes, knowledge, skills, capacities, and best practices for fostering peaceable classrooms, homes, and school environments, with broader implications for our communities and nations. The workshop will explore the characteristics and traits of peaceful cultures and societies, and how to spread such conditions. We will challenge dominant narratives about human nature, interpersonal conflicts, violence and war.

Peace Education models and promotes behaviors and values where: 1) people address conflicts nonviolently, 2) where human rights are universally upheld, and 3) where social justice, ecological balance, and intercultural respect have become a reality. Indeed, data shows that graduates of Peace Education programs and schools contribute to more inclusive societies where all people are accepted. They are more likely to protect the environment, help those in need, and work for peace. The approach of the workshop will be interdisciplinary, drawing early childhood development theories, history, gender studies, biology, anthropology, archeology, sociology, psychology, the fine arts, and peace research, among other intellectual traditions.

Since 1981, Barbara has worked to end human rights abuses, violence, war, and ecological destruction. She protected civilians from the death squads in conflict zones as co-director of Peace Brigades International (20223-2008) and worked to establish 280 programs in the study of peace and conflict resolution on campuses around the world while Academic Director at the World Policy Institute (1981-1986).

She is a public scholar and peace practitioner with extensive knowledge of gender violence, peacebuilding, nonviolent social movements, and the political economy of war. She has been recognized for her leadership and “moral courage” four times by foundations and academic societies: The 2022 Mohanji International Foundation Award for “Visionary Leadership in Nurturing the Next Generation of Peacemakers”, the 2018 "Peace Educator of the Year", the 2018 and 2019 “Professor with the Greatest Impact”, and the 2015 and 2017 “My Favorite Professor” award. For five years, she served as Chair of the Board for Eyewitness Palestine / Interfaith Peacebuilders to end the Israel Occupation.


Cultural Practices to Rebuild Social Cohesion Following Violent Conflict

Mainlehwon Ebenezer Vonhm (Researcher, Trainer, and Educator)

This workshop begins by addressing the impact of violent conflict on the lives of survivors (i.e., victims and victimizers) in a post-conflict environment. Next, it exposes participants to peacebuilding theories and practices to rebuild social cohesion (i.e., sense of living together) after violent conflict, highlighting their gaps.

Then, participants will examine peace education interventions and approaches in light of the current peacebuilding theories and practices to rebuild social cohesion after violent conflict and identify their limitations. Last, participants will explore cultural practices and processes to rebuild social cohesion after violent conflict and consider their implications for peace education in non-Western post-conflict contexts.

Mainlehwon Ebenezer Vonhm is a researcher, trainer, and an educator in peace education, peacebuilding, and conflict resolution studies. He was born in Liberia, endured personal humiliation and torture during the heinous Liberian Civil War, and later fled Liberia to live as a refugee in several West African countries before relocating to the United States in 1997. He enrolled at Florida State University and as a student in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks, organized a campus seminar to mitigate tensions between Christian and Muslim students, didactically using his own experiences as a victim of terror.

In recognition of his efforts, he received the Southern Poverty Law Center's Rosa Parks Tolerance Award in 2002. In 2004, he earned a Master of Arts degree in International Peace and Conflict Resolution from American University in Washington, DC. A year later, he returned to Liberia with the World Bank to work on peacebuilding community development projects. In 2008, he established the Center for Peace Education (CPE;, a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to helping children and youth affected by war, born in conflict-affected societies, and growing up in post-conflict settings acquire the knowledge and tools to peacefully coexist.

For his dedication to peacebuilding, he received a Peacemaker Award from American University’s Peacebuilding and Development Institute in 2005. He earned his MPhil Degree in Education Research from the Faculty of Education at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom and his PhD in Education from the George Mason University College of Education and Human Development with a concentration in peacebuilding and conflict resolution that focuses on cultural practices in non-Western cultures to rebuild social cohesion after violent conflict.