by Grace Wright and Hannah Bernstein
Hi there! We’re Hannah and Grace, this term’s PeaceTech Living-Learning Community (LLC) peer leaders. We are very excited for what we have planned this Fall and to share reflections from our community with you throughout the term.
With the Fall 2019 PeaceTech cohort, we will be exploring some exciting topics, including sustainable development, advocacy, artificial intelligence, robotics, and the intersection of gender, technology & peace. Students in the community will hear from their peers and guest speakers on these topics, including local artists, advocates, and innovators. Throughout the term, the PeaceTech community will engage with opportunities in the local community to explore real-world applications of what they are learning about in our meetings. As a group, we will be attending events in Kitchener-Waterloo exploring topics such as big data, social entrepreneurship, drones, and much more. We hope that through these experiences students will become better equipped to engage in conversations about the intersection of peacebuilding and technology, integrate insights from these events into their area of study, and get excited about how they can use these experiences and knowledge to advance peace in their communities and beyond. Charity Nonkes, an upper year Peace & Conflict Studies student in this term’s PeaceTech community, shared:
"The Peacetech Living-Learning Community will allow me to explore a new area of peace that I have not learned about as much. I am looking forward to understanding the intersections of peace and technology - especially since these connections are critical in our world today. Doing this with a group of engineers, peace students, and others is truly exciting and speaks to the power of collaboration."
This week has been a very exciting week in the PeaceTech world, because it is Peace Week, celebrating the International Day of Peace on Saturday, September 21st. This date also coincides with the Kindred Credit Union Centre for Peace Advancement’s 5th anniversary celebration, Catalyzing Collaboration. The celebration included news highlights of the Centre for Peace Advancement’s achievements, speeches from Kindred Credit Union and founding members of the Centre, as well as an opportunity to explore and hear from members of the Centre's Epp Peace Incubator.
We had a number of Grebelites and PeaceTech LLC members attend, including Cole Fehr, a first year Mechatronics student who said that it was “amazing to see so many dedicated individuals. Strides are being made with regards to conflict resolution within the Centre of Peace Advancement. Peace rules!”
Earlier this week, many PeaceTech members also attended the HeForShe Get Free Tour Campus Rally. This year, the University of Waterloo was the first stop on the Canadian University Get Free Tour hosted by UN Women. Special guests included Elizabeth Nyamayaro from UN Women and actor Edgar Ramirez, HeForShe goodwill ambassador.
Check out this video from the event.
Stay tuned for more updates on the exciting development of this community!