Rwandan genocide is topic of Heidelberg lecture series

Aug 25, 2014

Heidelberg University will explore the theme of the 1994 Rwandan genocide during its fifth annual Lichtman-Behm Genocide Lecture Series Sept. 16-18. The university will welcome as the keynote speaker Rwandan genocide survivor and activist Claude Gatebuke.

Gatebuke, who lives in Tennessee, has dedicated his live to advocating for human rights. He is the executive director and co-founder of the Nashville-based African Great Lakes Action Network, an organization focused on justice, peace and prosperity in the Great Lakes region of Africa.

Additionally, Gatebuke is a member of the African Great Lakes Advocacy Coalition, which unites more than a dozen advocacy organizations with a common vision for a peaceful region.

Gatebuke’s advocacy work focuses on genocide prevention. He has lobbied on Capitol Hill and in Nashville, and is a regular presenter at colleges, universities, churches, community organizations and conferences across the U.S. Drawing upon his personal experiences as a genocide survivor, he has appeared on local, national and international television and radio programs as an expert on genocide awareness and prevention.

The campus and the community will have an opportunity to hear Gatebuke’s story during a presentation at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 17, in Wickham Great Hall (Campus Center). The program is free and open to the community.

The Lichtman-Behm Lecture series kicks off on Tuesday, Sept. 16, with a film screening on campus. Gatebuke will meet with various Heidelberg classes on Wednesday, Sept. 17, and will be the keynote speaker during a community event at 7 p.m. that evening. On Thursday morning, several Heidelberg faculty members will present mini-sessions that will help prepare local/area middle school and high school students for a larger program about the Rwandan genocide. A panel discussion will conclude the series Thursday evening.

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