MA in Urban Studies Open House

Are you interested in learning more about impacting urban communities? Plan to attend Eastern University’s MA in Urban Studies Open House! Date: Saturday, February 21st from 10AM-12PM Location: Eastern University Falls Center Event will include a program presentation, panel discussion, and time to network with faculty, students and alum. Register at this link. Questions: contact 215-769-3121              

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Trauma Informed Practice in Philadelphia

Mastery Charter schools in Philadelphia are now training teachers and implementing trauma-informed practice, which purposes to address the root causes of negative behaviors such as toxic stress, neglect and abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder, and changing family structure. Partnering with Multiplying Connections, a Philadelphia nonprofit, much of Mastery’s professional development this year has been focused on trauma-informed techniques. These techniques have been particularly useful for staff in charge of discipline and school climate or culture. John Widmer, Mastery’s director of culture, reports that while they have continued to implement consequences for improper behavior, the consequences are no longer one-size-fits-all and support is offered in...

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“To Repair the World” – Part 8 – A blog by Jay and Stan

Jay and Stan are two guys who dream about changing the world. Together, they are reading Paul Farmer’s book – To Repair the World. Paul has a great reputation as someone who changes the world. This week, Jay (an Eastern graduate and sustainable development student) and Stan (his professor and friend) are talking about the 8th chapter of the book. Jay and Stan read a chapter and then ask each other questions about Paul Farmer’s ideas for repairing the world. (For their discussion of chapters 1-7, please visit their previous blogs on the A Rocha USA site. You will have to scroll to find Parts 1-7). JAY TO STAN: “Farmer describes the Haiti Earthquake as an ‘acute-on-chronic problem’ (page 101). What do you see as some of the chronic problems...

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Summer Jobs Help to Reduce Violence Among Youth by Corrinn Cobb

A brief published in the Science journal reports public summer jobs programming for high school students in Chicago’s most troubled neighborhoods has helped to reduce violent crime arrests by nearly 43 percent. The study comes out of the University of Chicago’s Crime Lab, which uses breakthroughs in science to help government agencies and non-profit organizations develop new, innovative approaches to reducing crime and violence. Statistics show that in acts of violence throughout the United States, majority of those crimes involve youth – who are more than two times as likely as adults to be both victims and perpetrators of violence.  The purpose of the study was to examine the widely held discourse among sociologists – such as William Julius Wilson –...

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Avoiding Another Garner by Corrinn Cobb

In an op-ed piece in Newsweek, University of Chicago Law School professor, Richard Epstein, argues that professionalization of police force would control police abuse.  While most criminologists agree that “today’s police departments are more professional than ever before,” Epstein believes that more can be done to make them better, more efficient, and to help reduce police abuse and brutality. Epstein outlines several steps to reforming police departments across the nation.  A first suggestion is to require police officers to wear cameras.  This would help to reduce the level of uncertainty when attempting to decipher and understand police/citizen confrontations.  Epstein also believes that this will help to keep police officer’s behavior in check as...

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Millennials and Church by Corrinn Cobb

This week’s blog is in response to Relevant Magazine’s article, “The Unexpected Things Millennials Want in Church.” The article caught my eye as I am always interested in what supposed ‘experts’ and surveys have to say about my generation.  Most of the time, we are bashed as being self-centered, entitled, materialistic and narcissist, forever attached to technology and social media.  But some how, we remain the most ‘civically engaged’ generation as compared to Baby Boomers and Gen X’ers.  Ironic, to say the least. I appreciated that this article – while pretty surface level – challenged a few assumptions about Millennials, especially when it comes to church.  Some key findings of the Barna Group’s survey of folks ages 14 to 30...

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Immigration Reform… Finally by Corrinn Cobb

On November 20th, President Barack Obama announced he would grant temporary legal status to almost 5 million undocumented citizens. You can listen to the speech via Time.com. The action began with extending temporary status to who came to the US as children but did not qualify for deferred deportations in 2012. To support his reasoning, Present Obama called upon Americans to be both open to the process as well as to remember our values as a nation.  At one point, he quoted from scripture: “Scripture tells us that we shall not oppress a stranger, for we know the heart of a stranger—we were strangers once, too,” Obama added, quoting Exodus. “My fellow Americans, we are and always will be a nation of immigrants. We were strangers once, too.” It is not yet...

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