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Challenges to the Status Quo: A System Unraveling?

  • What’s it like to view a Nobel Peace Prize medal in person? Lewis & Clark students found out when guest speaker Ira Helfand, a nuclear disarmament activist, brought his 2017 medal to the symposium.
    Hanna Merzbach BA ’20

Spring Symposium: International Affairs

In April, Lewis & Clark hosted its 57th International Affairs Symposium, titled Challenges to the Status Quo: A System Unraveling? It was designed to explore the forces that are defying widely accepted norms and institutions worldwide.

This year’s event was cochaired by international affairs majors Nejra Gradan BA ’19 and Emina Ema Ibisevicć BA ’19, both Davis United World College Scholars from Bosnia and Herzegovina. They were supported by a steering committee of 12 students from a multitude of countries and representing a variety of academic disciplines.

The symposium revolved around six panel debates, with topics ranging from populist disruption to the merits and limitations of nuclear disarmament. The sessions were moderated by Lewis & Clark professors.

Although the debate topics are meant to be controversial, the committee aims to inspire constructive and productive conversations, both during the debate and across campus. “We don’t want to simply give people answers,” says Gradan. “We want them to use what they know about the topic and what they heard to create their own opinion.”

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