Peace and Social Justice Studies

The Sad News

Around the world, and especially in North America, questions on values arise in the ever-changing private, corporate and public spheres, demanding continual attention.

Environmentally, species are disappearing irretrievably as whole countries prepare for emergency climactic conditions and epidemics.  Threats of terrorism and the over-blown backlash have shaken security on all levels.  Gang wars, gun ownership, shooting rampages and bullying are affecting the ways we think of community.  Developments in science have revolutionized industry, agriculture and food in ways that cause serious conflicts within communities the world over.  Conflict resolution and civility are continually relegated to the margins in the name of ideologies.  Weaponry threatens to spread to space, while on earth it causes mass misery, destruction and atmospheric pollution, and devours budgets which could be used to lessen the suffering of the poor, refugees, the ill, and increasing numbers of psychologically distressed people.  The nuclear threat has rekindled with American Empiricism.

Globalization splits populations: with possibilities for communication and mass participation in demonstrations and discussions, it has also brought the subjugation of governments and peoples to the will of multinational corporations, consumerism and profit.

The Good News

Education in personal and global responsibility, in conflict resolution of al sorts, and in civility is available to individuals. Solutions are possible when people, common in their humanity, work together to preserve the diverse heritages of all species and to encourage projects of peace for the next generations. Societal change requires interpersonal relations based on respect, awareness of non-violent alternatives and of how the many kinds of conflict can be resolved, as well as, for many, encouraging the search for spiritual peace. Solutions to global problems grow out of understanding them and finding out what actions can be taken.

The Goods

The Peace and Social Studies Certificate brings together College courses which inform students about world issues and their impacts on their personal lives. Students are then empowered to take action. To obtain the Certificate, a student must take at least six courses designated as Peace and Social Studies courses.  Within one of these courses, each student completes a special project, a self-defined project which is aligned with an assignment already required for the course. Courses can be taken from student’s General Education requirements, as well as within their program of study, and any John Abbott student in any program is eligible, simply by applying to the coordinator (contact: psjs@johnabbott.qc.ca). The Certificate will be granted upon graduation. Students Enrolled in any of the College’s Programs Can Receive a Peace and Social Studies Certificate
Generally the following themes have been identified as making a course a Peace and Social Studies course. Special projects undertaken by students will also reflect these themes:

  • Issues of war and peace in their social, political, historic, religious and economic contexts;
  • Investigation into militarism, the threat of nuclear and mass destruction weapons, and their environmental contexts;
  • Inquiries about social justice – poverty, inequality, lack of human rights, racism, and sexism;
  • Explorations of peace in a “positive” sense – interpersonal relations based on respect for the environment and the person, conflict resolution, non-violent alternatives, the search for spiritual peace and moderated consumerism.

Any student may register for the certificate any time between her/his acceptance into the College and the drop deadline for her/his graduating semester.

PEACE AND SOCIAL STUDIES Certificate complements any DEC

Peace and Social Studies is a certificate you can gain credit for WHILE you do your DEC in a regular program.  It requires you to choose six courses from the Peace and Social Studies Course List list

The certificate encourages a self-identified focus on peace, and calls for a special project, but it does not entail extra work on top of your DEC requirements.  It simply adds value to your diploma.

The Peace and Social Studies Certificate brings together College courses which inform students about world issues and their impacts on their personal lives. Students are then more able to take action.

To obtain the Certificate, a student must take at least six courses designated as Peace and Social Studies courses.  Within one of these courses, each student completes a special project, a self-defined project which is aligned with an assignment already required for the course.

For more information, please contact the coordinator of the Peace and Social Studies Certificate:
(email) psjs@johnabbott.qc.ca(telephone) 514-457-6610, extension 5448