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THE HWS JUSTICE LEAGUE

Jeremy Wattles, CCESL, Alejandra Molina, Intercultural Affairs, Solome
Rose, CCL, Adam Maurer, Sustainability, Sarah Meyer, FLI

Who We Are

by Jeremy Wattles

The Justice League began as a conversation with my friend Jamie Landi '08, former sustainability manager, in the fall of 2012. I had gone through some old notes from a conference at Skidmore College in 2010, where guest speaker Angela Park spoke powerfully about strategic partnerships for social justice, service, diversity, and sustainability advocates, and asked myself whether some offices here on campus might develop such an initiative. After many weeks of meeting with Jamie and other colleagues from the Finger Lakes Institute, Office of Intercultural Affairs, and the Centennial Center for Leadership, we couldn’t figure out a name for ourselves.

Eventually, someone suggested the Justice League and it’s stuck ever since. We meet every other month to share ideas for programming and identify ways we can work together. Why? Not only to cut down on the number of campus events that sometimes struggle to for attendance, but because the 21st Century will be defined by huge demographic changes/increases in diversity, competition for increasingly limited natural resources, and communities reckoning with increasing inequality and dwindling social mobility. These conditions form a coherent, interconnected set of problems; only by addressing them as such will we be able to affect meaningful change. This moment in time offers both a tremendous opportunity for that change, as well as an honest confrontation with destructive social trends. College campuses, which often have fragmented, peripheral offices and initiatives focused on these three strands of service, sustainability, and social justice/diversity, are microcosms of these large scale national and global problems. We seek to identify shared values and action areas for the sake of greater reach, efficiency, and power, with the ultimate goal of moving conversations that have existed on the periphery to the center. Some examples of programs we have collaborated on thus far include: Earth Week, Food Week, and The Grateful Plate. Next year we will work on our third iteration of Food Week, as well as a possible 10th anniversary commemoration of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath.

 

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Hobart and William Smith Colleges
Geneva, NY 14456
(315) 781-3000

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