(Posted September 12, 2005)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- A variety of Juniata College student clubs have organized a series of events, titled "Salaam: Peace" designed to honor the anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001 and offer cross-cultural events to Juniata and its surrounding community.

All the events are free and open to the public.

The first event is a concert at 9 p.m., Friday, Sept. 9 in the ballroom in Ellis Hall, featuring Fatima El Haj Hassane, an oud musician. The oud is a Middle Eastern string instrument, sometimes called the Middle Eastern lute.

The student clubs will sponsor a Candlelight Vigil at 9 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 11 on the lawn in front of the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts (Oller Hall). The vigil will offer prayers for peace led by students and ministers of various faiths. In addition, speakers will offer personal reflections on Sept. 11 during this event.

Finally, the college will host a panel discussion, "Islam: Religious and Cultural Understanding" at 7:30 p.m., Tuesday,, Sept. 13 in Neff Auditorium in the von Liebig Center for Science. The panelists for the discussion will include, an imam from the Islamic Learning Center in Altoona, Souzan Kurdli, an international student from Syria, and Belle Tuten, professor of history at Juniata. Tuten teaches several courses at Juniata on the history of Islam.

"We were inspired by some recommendations that were in the report published by the 9-11 Commission that called for more cross-cultural understanding between the West and the Islamic world," says Ryan Richards, a senior from Coupeville, Wash. and an officer in PAX-O, one of the clubs sponsoring the event. "Juniata's students are interesting in opening discussion and increasing our knowledge of the wider world beyond our campus."

The events of "Salaam: Peace" are sponsored by the following Juniata student clubs: PAX-O, the peace and conflict studies club; the Muslim Student Association; the Campus Ministry Board; Americans for an Informed Democracy; Hillel, the Jewish students organization; Brethren Student Fellowship; and the Catholic Council.

Contact April Feagley at feaglea@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3131 for more information.