UCSB’s Peace Leadership Program, the latest campus student organization created to promote harmony, rainbows and sunshine, held its inaugural meeting last week.
The club’s first meeting attracted a large group of students with the common goal of fostering a peaceful world. Aside from simply talking about peace, members of the club also have the opportunity to take free leadership training courses as they discuss issues ranging from world poverty to the environment. The group, which meets every Tuesday at South Hall 1431 beginning at 8 p.m., is affiliated with the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.
According to program president Maggie Hott, a fourth-year global studies major, the new club offers students a venue to take initiative on important topics.
“The new group on campus aims to give students the opportunity to learn a diverse set of practical skills,” Hott said. “A lot of people want to make a difference, but they just don’t know how to take action and no one’s ever really taught us.”
Member Michelle Nam, a fourth-year English and global studies major, said developing leadership skills will not only benefit her in the program, but help with her future career as well.
“I joined the Peace Leadership Program because I’m hoping to put the knowledge that I’ve gained from my global studies classes in a tangible, somewhat real life context,” Nam said.
According to Peace Leadership Director Paul Chappell, he was prompted to create the program at UCSB to provide students with innovative training in pursuit of peace.
“If we want peace in the world, we need to step up our game and get good training,” Chappell said.
Moreover, Hott said the group teaches students a diverse set of practical skills.
“I want to learn how to do things more than just rallying or lobbying,” Hott said. “I want to take action.”
Nam also echoed Hott’s sentiment.
“I’m excited to learn concrete skills and strategies to promote peace and somehow make this world a little bit more harmonious and balanced through my everyday actions,” Nam said.