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Organizers of 3rd annual Justice Festival set their sights on social change

Samantha Morrill

Morehead State University faculty, staff and students invite the Rowan County community to share in discussions about social issues at an annual gathering. The Caudill College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences is holding its third Justice Festival at the Adron Doran University Center this week. The theme this year is “Community Organization and Social Justice,” and the keynote speaker is Henry Cunningham, Director of Community Engagement at the University of Louisville.

Organizers said the Justice Festival is an event highlighting social issues including gender inequality, climate change, race issues and affordable housing. The event will have music, art, lectures, workshops and panel discussions, all with the aim of sparking discussion about these issues.

Sylvia Henneberg, interim Dean of the Caudill College, said the event will provide plenty of opportunities for attendees to learn and enrich their lives.

“Of course, the ultimate goal of all these interactions is social change, but we’re hoping that it can enrich our classrooms, our conversations, our friendships. Every so often I think we need fresh conversations during which we can then replenish our thoughts and take a little bit of a critical view on what it is we spend our days with every day,” said Henneberg.

The festival is free and open to the public. It is an all-day experience, but Henneberg encouraged people to come by for however long they can. She said sessions throughout the day will include something for everyone.

“We also have something completely different, the idea of equity and justice in the mathematics classroom, and we are of course, also going to explore gender and transgender realities and dynamics. So, it’s really a very, very, wide plethora of events and I think everybody will find something that will interest them,” said Henneberg.

A new component to the festival this is year is student presentations. Henneberg said students, under the guidance of mentors, will bring a fresh perspective to the day’s events.

The festival will take place in the ADUC ballroom from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on October 11. Sessions are planned throughout the day.