Editorial:College to prepare students with lifetime advocacy plans

By Mallory Terrence
February 5, 2009

Justice Matters is more than the name of Cabrini’s new curriculum; it is the way Cabrini students think. Rather than just having students engage in community service activities, Cabrini emphasizes how students can bring about long-lasting change for social justice.

Organizations, courses and trips have shown the student body that lending a hand to those in need during the holiday season is not enough. Cabrini has helped open student and faculty minds to a world and a lifetime of advocacy.

To advocate for a better world is the goal of the new curriculum. Regardless of what profession you go into after graduation, Cabrini wants to ensure that the world will be filled with graduates working towards making a difference.

It is easy to graduate from Cabrini or from any college and jump right into the work force. Before you know it, you are having a family, buying a house and doing the thousand and one things that you will have to do. Without noticing it, you will have spent your life focusing on yourself and the small world around you instead of also working towards a change that you had loved so much during your college days.

However, our government and major corporations have shown us that they do not always make the best decisions. Their selfish decisions that are coming to light these days in the news are leaving us average American people to clean up their mess.

It does not have to be that way. You can stay on top of what is going on around you and speak up when laws get dropped or passed that would hurt in the issue you feel strongly about. The point of the Cabrini curriculum is to help each of us to find an area we really care about and then work towards finding solutions to what is broken in society. It can be global hunger or inadequate schools. Whatever the cause, Cabrini can give us the tools to get at the root of the problem instead of just helping out once in a while.

As journalists, we believe the power of the pen is a tool for shedding light on problems and offering a platform for those seeking change. However, it sometimes is not enough.

Congressman Joe Sestak recently sat down with a group of Cabrini communication majors to discus the best way to advocate for a program or topic they feel strongly about. Sestak made a great point by saying he receives thousands of letters and e-mails a day and although he reads them all, the ones he pays most attention to not only present their ideas, but more importantly, have reasonable solutions.

Although Sestak is a democrat, he is representing a district in Pennsylvania that is 65 percent republican and so he needs solutions acceptable to people from both parties. So when someone comes to Sestak to advocate for their particular cause, he prefers to hear compromises and solutions rather than demands.

So the lesson for all of us at Cabrini is that in working for social justice, we need to learn how to develop effective solutions to the problems we are studying. Then we will be set to make a long-term difference in the world.

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Mallory Terrence

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