campus news and events

International Education Week at Colby-Sawyer College Celebrates Africa's Culture, Politics and Social Issues

NEW LONDON, N.H., Nov. 2, 2012 – Colby-Sawyer College will host its annual International Education Week November 12- 15, celebrating Africa's culture, politics and social issues through presentations, films and performances.

The events are free and open to the public.

On Monday, Nov. 12, Colby-Sawyer student and Ghanaian native Enoch Holu '13 will kick off International Education Week with his Wesson Honors research presentation, “Modern Day Effects of the Slave Trade on Ghana.” Introduced by Assistant Professor of Social Sciences and Education Eric Boyer, the presentation will take place at 12:30 in Gordon Hall at the Sawyer Fine Arts Center.

The focus on Ghana continues into the evening with a screening in Gordon Hall of Jarreth Merz's film “An African Election” (2011), which chronicles the West African country's 2008 presidential elections. Providing an insider's view of the political, social and economic forces at work, the documentary captures the complexity of a third-world democracy struggling to legitimize itself in the eyes of its first-world contemporaries. A discussion will follow.

Colby-Sawyer's African students will host a poster session on Tuesday, Nov. 13, from 12 to 1:30 p.m. in the Sawyer Center lobby, with each sharing his or her regional experience to highlight Africa's cultural diversity.

On Tuesday evening, the film “Sweet Crude” (2007) will be screened in Gordon Hall at 7 p.m. The film documents the effects of sweet crude oil in Nigeria's Niger Delta and delves into the environmental degradation and disparity between immense wealth and abject poverty resultant from the oil's prevalence. A discussion will follow.

On Wednesday, Nov. 14, from 11:30 2 p.m., the Global Nomads Group (GNG) will present their philosophy. An international non-governmental organization, GNG aims to foster dialogue and understanding among the youth of the world. Their current project, “Million Bones,” calls on North American students to combat the humanitarian crises of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Students will be encouraged to participate in the “Million Bones Challenge” by contributing to the collection of 1,000,000 papier-mâché bones, with which the GNG will cover the National Mall in Washington, D.C.

An African student celebration will also take place on Wednesday between 5 and 8 p.m. in the Sawyer Center lobby. The festivities will include a fashion show of traditional attire, traditional food, corn-row braiding, traditional dances from various regions, and vibrant music.

A study abroad information session will be held on Thursday, Nov. 15, between 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. in the Sawyer Center lobby.

The focus on Africa will climax Thursday with workshops and a performance by the West African drumming virtuoso Sayon Camara, all held in the Sawyer Center lobby. Camara will conduct a workshop between 4 and 4:30 p.m. for Windy Hill students. From 5:30 to 7 p.m., Colby-Sawyer students, faculty, and staff are invited learn about and embrace traditional Guinean music. Finally, at 8 p.m., Camara will present a full performance of drumming and music, to which the public is invited.

“Africa My Africa,” a photography exhibition through which students, faculty and staff share their connections to Africa, will be on display in the Sawyer Center throughout the week.

International Education Week is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education and part of a national effort to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn and exchange experiences in the United States. Colby-Sawyer's events were organized by the Office of International and Diversity Programs.

  • David Hart '13

Colby-Sawyer College is a comprehensive college that integrates the liberal arts and sciences with professional preparation. Founded in 1837, Colby-Sawyer is located in the scenic Lake Sunapee Region of central New Hampshire.

Colby-Sawyer College, 541 Main Street, New London, N.H. 03257 (603) 526-3000