Published: Jan 15, 2010
For the last three years, students in Edesa Scarborough’s Global Issues
class have donated their winnings from a semester-long challenge on
global cooperation to a local nonprofit organization.
lucky that they’ve won and even more fortunate they have decided to
give the money to charity,” said Scarborough, mentioning their only
obligation with the money is to use it in a conscientious way.
The money is earned through two major projects in the Global Issues
course, Global Village Simulation and Model United Nations. Both are
experiential learning tools where students represent specific countries,
share each other’s culture and serve in the roles of the leaders and
policy makers of those countries, making hypothetical exchanges (through
international trade) they feel will better their own country while
maintaining or improving world conditions.
At the end of the
semester, students vote on which classes did the best job with
professors doing the final judging. Cash awards, provided through the
Baccalaureate Experience, are divvied out.
“A lot of it has to do with the nature of the course and what we talk about,” said Scarborough of her students’ success.
Scarborough, assistant director of UT’s Baccalaureate Experience,
teaches her Global Issues class on violence, conflict and peace
studies. Students are exposed to a broad-range of international issues
on the topic, including what human behaviors and outside influences lead
to more or less violence in society. Required reading includes a book
on peace studies.
She said the students are making the
connections that the roots of some violence are in the disadvantages of
poverty and a lack of education.
“It’s the course itself. It’s a
tough, tough course,” she said. “There is a lot of focus on problem
solving without war. But the students get to a position where they just
get it. They understand it.”
For the last three years,
Scarborough’s students have always won at least some portion of the cash
prize. The money can be used for cultural experiences like going out to
an ethnic restaurant or visiting a museum. Scarborough’s students all
have donated their winnings, which range from $250 to $500 a semester,
to organizations like UNICEF, I CAN! Community Education Coalition, the
Sykes Chapel and Center for Faith and Values, and St. Jude Children's
“In Global Issues, we learned about many
aspects of conflict and violence…This misinformation can be stopped
early in the classroom: children need to learn important and necessary
information in order to get a better understanding of the world and the
multitude of cultures,” wrote Imarys Torres ‘11 in a reflection paper
after her 2007 fall semester class donated their winnings to UNA-USA
Hero which provides school-based support to orphans and vulnerable
children living with HIV/AIDS in Africa.
"In her syllabus,
Dr. Scarborough concludes with a final thought, a lyric from John Mayer,
'Waiting on the world to change.' But what she taught us is that we do
not have to wait for the world to change. We, in fact, must be the ones
to change it," said Bethany Kreider '10 who was in that fall 2007 class
"That knowledge, that empowerment, that challenge from Dr.
Scarborough is the reason that my class and I donated our Global Village
winnings to charity," Kreider said. "We learned from her that the only
way to change the world is to become informed and then to use that
knowledge to take action and help in any way possible."
In December, Scarborough’s most recent class donated $500 to The
Ophelia Project and The Boys Initiative, specifically for their
educational outreach on nonviolence in schools.
Scarborough's class represented what a college class should teach," said
Rachel Meade '13, who took the class last fall. "College isn't just
about academics. It's about life, and how you can make your life and the
world around you a better place."
Jamie Pilarczyk, Web Writer
Sign up for UT Web Alerts