Peace and Conflict Studies

Please participate in Bridge: Honouring the Lives of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and Two Spirit Peoplean annual installation for 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence at the University of Waterloo.

  • Opening Ceremony on Friday, October 27 at 10:00 AM
  • Closing Ceremony on Friday, November 10 at 10:00 AM

Both ceremonies will take place at the Ceremonial Fire Grounds and the bridge between Environment 3 and United College and will be followed by a catered Soup Lunch and Creative Reflection.

All are invited to stay for a Soup Lunch hosted by the Shatitsirótha' Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre (WISC) and supported by the Department of Communication Arts after the Opening and Closing Ceremonies from 12:30 to 1:30 PM. Al McDonald is returning as the Ceremonial Fire Keeper. 

Working with Shatitsirótha' Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre (WISC), the Office of Indigenous Relations (ORI), the Sexual Violence Prevention Response Office (SVPRO), and 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, Dr. Sorouja Moll initiated Bridge in 2015 to create a space for all University community members to learn about the crisis as they reflect upon their responsibilities and share in speaking the names of the lives taken to honour and remember as the red fabric is tied to the bridge between Environment 3 and United College.

For the Opening Ceremony, we are requesting volunteers to read the names — please contact Sorouja Moll

The gesture to name, remember, and honour the 5000+ missing and murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and Two Spirit People across the many nations in Canada is an active engagement in learning about the depth of the crisis in Canada while resisting and (en)countering the existing silence that continues to shroud it. Originally installed in Montreal in 2009, as The Writing Names Project, Moll's research-creation initiative is a counter-memorial and is part of a meaningful and sustained collaborative intercultural praxis between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities. 

Watch the Bridge: Honouring the Lives of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and Two Spirit People 2019 video.

In celebration of Peace Week 2023, the PACS Department invites you to share your thoughts in response to a set of questions displayed in Grebel’s Upper Atrium. Questions will be displayed from September 21st to September 28th, 2023, inviting participants to visually and creatively represent their responses. Be part of our shared exploration of justice and peace by adding your voice.

Are you invested in supporting the social justice activities, programs, services, and advocacy groups here at the University of Waterloo? Would you like to see these initiatives and advocacies come to life through art, music, poetry, and other expressions? Come out to the Urgency of Social Justice event to support and experience the struggles and victories of social justice and advocacy groups at the University of Waterloo, and to have fun witnessing the various short speeches and performances by students, faculty, staff, and advocates. There will also be displays, information stations, research presentations, choir, and much more! This event is being hosted with the goal of sparking conversations about social issues including, but are not limited to; anti-racism, decolonization, gender and sexuality, class and economic inequality, truth and reconciliations, and human rights.

Abi presenting
The 2022 winner, Abi, presented her speech to the audience.

The annual C. Henry Smith Peace Oratorical Contest, established in 1974 by the directors of the C. Henry Smith Trust, offers PACS students an opportunity to discuss peacebuilding and social justice issues on campus. The intercollegiate competition is administered by the Peace and Justice Ministries of the Mennonite Central Committee (MCC). Undergraduate students from every Mennonite and Brethren in Christ college in North America, including Canada, are eligible to participate. 

Henry Smith was an American Mennonite historian and professor at Mennonite colleges and the University of Chicago. Overall, he taught history for nearly 50 years at the collegiate level. He is well-known for his numerous books on Mennonite history and his particular attention to the peace commitments of the Mennonite tradition.  

On March 8, 2023, at 7 PM in the Grebel Gallery in the Kindred Center for Peace for Advancement (CPA), PACS is organizing a speech performance and is inviting you to participate. The contest winners will be rewarded with cash prizes of $400 for first place, $300 for second place, and $200 for third place. For more information, reach out to the PACS Academic Advisor.

To learn more about the contest and meet previous PACS or Grebel resident participants, visit this link here.

Application deadline - February 28, 2023 

On Monday, Sept. 26, we’re proud to present Jani Lauzon, director and playwright, and Kaitlyn Riordan, playwright, whose co-created play 1939 is currently running at the Stratford Festival.