Open Panel Discussions Held After Presidential Elections
The Social Justice Council at Potomac State College (PSC) of West Virginia University recently sponsored an open panel discussion entitled, “The Election is Over, What’s Next?” in which students, faculty, staff, and local residents participated.
Previously submitted questions were read, then answered by panelists before being commented on from members of the audience. Pictured from left: Catie Snider, instructor of sociology and anthropology who serves as chair of the Social Justice Council and Linda Bane, associate university librarian, served as moderators for the event. Panelists included (seated): Mohammad Saifi, engineering professor; Ed Brown, Ph.D., student involvement and activities coordinator; Nicklaus Goff, criminal justice instructor; Hannah Kress, an international student majoring in pre-veterinary science from Australia; and from the community, Tom Denne, Ph.D., current Board of Education member who previously served as the Mineral County School Psychologist.
To cite a couple questions and answers: In response to a question regarding upcoming changes, Goff quoted Mahatma Gandhi when he stated, “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”
And when asked about the actions of some protestors who, according to national news, resorted to name-calling, Kress responded with, “Disrespect is learned. Hatred is taught. We aren’t born knowing how to hate, it’s something we learn as we grow. We need to unlearn the hatred!”
Dr. Denne replied with a positive approach in response to a comment regarding recent violence in the national news among various ethnicities and races, stating, “When I’m walking down the street or you’re walking down the street, neither one of us should have to cross the street to avoid each another. We should smile and speak to one another. We should be able to get along with each other.”
“The purpose of the event was to unite the campus community as well as the local community while giving students the opportunity to ask questions they may have otherwise been uncomfortable asking,” said Snider.