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Restorative Justice Initiative To Host Justice Education Week Events

Penn State’s Restorative Justice Initiative has announced a full slate of events to recognize Justice Education Week from April 23 to April 29.

On Saturday, April 23, the organization will kick things off by hosting a Restorative Circles training from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Restorative Circles consists of a practice that builds and restores relationships through equal opportunity and sharing. It’s typically used to mediate conflicts and give everyone a chance for their voice to be heard.

Saturday’s training leads into an actual Restorative Circle session on Sunday, April 24. The topic is Criminal Justice in America, and it will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Both sessions Restorative Circles events will be in the Krause Innovation Studio in the Chambers Building.

On Monday, April 25, Dr. Bettina Love will speak to students via Zoom about her book, “We Want To Do More Than Just Survive.” Love is currently a professor at the University of Georgia and has spent countless hours researching and advocating for items that intersect with education reform, anti-racism, carceral studies, abolition, and Black joy.

From 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 26, the Restorative Justice Initiative will host the Centre County Pardon Project in Chambers 112. The project serves to walk people through pardons on their criminal records. Pennsylvania is one of the leading forces in pardon reform, and this project plays a role in that.

On Wednesday, April 27, students will have the opportunity to watch seminal Ken Burns documentary “College Behind Bars”, including a follow-up panel discussion about the film. The film will screen from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in Chambers 112.

Another guest speaker will virtually come to Penn State on Thursday, April 28. Activist and educator Tierra Williams, who helps lead State College’s 3/20 Coalition, will speak about the life of Black students and teachers in white spaces. The event will once again run from 6 to 7:30 p.m. in Chambers 112.

Finally, the Restorative Justice Initiative will run a re-entry simulation on Friday, April 29. Participants will take on the roles of those who were just released from prison. They will then participate in a simulation that takes them through the first month after getting released into day-to-day life. They will be asked to reflect on their experience and have a discussion about it.

More details about each event, as well as registration information, can be found in this release.

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About the Author

Owen Abbey

Owen Abbey was a Secondary Education major before he graduated from the wonderful institution known as Penn State. When he was not writing for the blog, he enjoyed rooting for the Baltimore Orioles and Ravens, supporting Penn State basketball and softball, dreaming of all of the ways he would win the TV show "Survivor," and yes mom, actually doing school work. All of this work prepared him to teach his own class of students, which was always his true passion. He still can be found on Twitter @theowenabbey and can be reached for questions and comments at [email protected]

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