(Posted March 30, 2009)

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Educators and experts who advocate for educational equity will gather at Juniata College Friday, April 3, and Saturday, April 4, to participate in the Pennsylvania National Association for Multicultural Education conference.

"This is a unique opportunity to have some of the most prominent experts in multicultural education right here in our own backyard," says Rosalie Rodriguez, special assistant to the president for diversity and inclusion. "The conference allows us to hear the foremost research and trends in multicultural education."

The theme of the conference is "Sustaining Justice," with the goal of creating a learning environment of acceptance, understanding and community building. The conferences will feature numerous lectures, workshops and discussion panels, all led by diversity experts from across the United States.

The conference is aimed at multicultural educators and pre-service teachers. Teachers can earn Act 48 credits for attending the conference. For more information on the events, go to http://www.juniata.edu/services/diversity/MainEvents.html, or call Rosalie Rodriguez at (814) 641-3125.

The opening address for the conference will be given by Sabrina Sojourner, a multicultural educator, at 4 p.m., Friday, April 3 in Neff Lecture Hall in the von Liebig Center for Science. Sojourner is a former director of diversity programs for the National Organization for Women and a former representative to the U.S. House of Representatives from Washington, D.C. She visited Juniata previously as the speaker for the Martin Luther King Jr. Convocation in January 2008.

The keynote address for the conference will be delivered at 1 p.m., Saturday, April 4, in the ballroom of Ellis Hall by Victor Lewis, director of diversity leadership and coordinator of curriculum development for Speak Out, a diversity training company based in Oakland, Calif. He previously worked as a lead trainer for the Oakland Men's Project. The talk is free and open to the public.

As part of the conference, Juniata Presents, the college's performance series, will stage "Platanos and Collard Greens," a romantic comedy focused on an interracial couple and the reactions to their relationship from family and friends. The play starts at 7:30 p.m., Friday, April 3 in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts.

Most of the workshops and seminars throughout both days will be in the William J. von Liebig Center for Science. On Saturday, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., visitors can browse vendor booths set up in the lobby of the von Liebig building. Vendors will include potters, artists, an herbal store, and an African market.
NAME hosts a national conference each year featuring nationally renowned speakers, workshops, symposiums and paper presentations on topics directly relevant to multicultural education, diversity and equity.

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