NAPERVILLE, Ill. – North Central College invites community members to experience this year’s activities for the College’s annual Anti-Hate Week Oct. 1-5.
A keynote talk on Oct. 2 by young adult author Alex Sanchez and a multimedia tour called the Tunnel of Oppression on Oct. 3 are among the events that are free and open to the public.
Started by North Central College students in 1998, Anti-Hate Week is an annual week-long campaign designed to educate and raise awareness about various forms of oppression and discrimination.
“Students are key in the organization of Anti-Hate Week,” says Dorothy Pleas, North Central’s director of multicultural affairs. “From the student groups NCC Thinks and OUTreach that organize activities and lobbied to bring our keynote speaker to campus to those who are creating the Tunnel of Oppression, our students are dedicated to raising awareness about social justice issues. And Anti-Hate Week allows them to focus on issues they’re passionate about.”
On Tues., October 2, Alex Sanchez will keynote the week with an address that begins at 7PM in the Harold and Eva White Activities Center, 325 E. Benton Ave. A renowned young adult author of the “Rainbow Boys” trilogy of teen novels, Sanchez will talk about his personal experiences growing up as a gay Mexican immigrant. He will also discuss how homophobia hurts everyone and how he came to write the books that enabled him to break down barriers in life. He earned a master’s degree in guidance and counseling from Old Dominion University and worked for many years as a youth and family counselor. His newest novel, “Boyfriends with Girlfriends,” was released in 2011.
On Wed., October 3, the Tunnel of Oppression will take place between 4 and 8PM. on the second floor of the Harold and Eva White Activities Center. A multimedia tour, the Tunnel experience involves a 20-minute walk through a series of rooms designed to raise awareness and challenge peoples’ ideas and perceptions related to oppression in our world and communities.
Previous keynote speakers have included syndicated columnist Leonard Pitts; Judy Shepard, whose son was murdered while a university student; Holocaust survivor Benjamin Jacobs; Arun Gandhi, grandson of Mahatma Gandhi; Barbara Martinez Jitner, award-winning Latina writer and director; Elizabeth Birch, executive director of Human Rights Campaign; Sherialyn Birdsong, widow of slain Northwestern University coach Ricky Birdsong; film director Mike Ramsdell; and Stan Pearson.
For more information contact Dorothy Pleas, North Central College’s director of multicultural affairs, at email@example.com or 630-637-5156.