Institute for Peace and Justice Education
Regional Summer Academy on Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding
In August, IPJE coordinated a third summer program for university students on conflict resolution in collaboration with the Institute on Diplomacy and Conflict Transformation. The Summer Academy on Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding, which ran from August 16 to 25, was made possible by a generous grant from the Swiss Fund for Development and Cooperation and support from the Mennonite Central Committee and LAU. The Academy brought together thirty students to an intensive residential program at the LAU Byblos campus. The students, who came from Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Palestine, Egypt and Kuwait, were selected from over eighty applicants based on their demonstrated commitment to community service and peacebuilding. The faculty of the Academy comprised both academics and conflict resolution and peacebuilding practitioners, which provided an appropriate balance of theory and practice.
During the ten days, the participants learned to analyze conflicts, developed skills in reflective listening, dialogue, consensus building and negotiation, and experienced first-hand what it is like to live and work with ‘the other.’ In small groups, participants put to use these skills as they developed proposals for potential community projects, which were presented to a local NGO representative.