Based on an understanding that differences enrich our lives and that conflicts provide opportunities for growth, peace studies proposes ways of being in the world that incorporate the skills of listening and dialogue, mediation and negotiation, the ideas of rights balanced with responsibilities, questions of justice, and philosophies of nonviolence. As the 21st century finds us living in a world where violence has become banal, where armed political and economic conflicts divide the world again into fiefdoms of ethnicity or privilege, so, too, exist alternatives by which we can live. Peace thought is the study of alternatives to violent conflict.
In this interdisciplinary program, students explore those alternatives through the study of conflict, violence, and nonviolence in the lives of individuals, communities, and the shared world. Students consider peace and conflict theories as they apply to historical and contemporary conflicts around the world. Additionally, they practice reflection and critical thinking and render service to communities as engaged citizens in the practice of peace.
“Professors are there for me and push me, but they are also there to talk to me if I’m having problems, and they’ll help me improve. Their goal is to make you succeed. It’s a good place to learn how to go off on your own.”