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Published: April 09, 2015

UT to Host Fourth Annual Human Rights Day Conference April 18

The University of Tampa will hold its fourth annual Human Rights Day Conference on Saturday, April 18. Conference attendees will investigate and celebrate human rights through panels, presentations and creative works from UT faculty and students as well as outside speakers.

The event will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the ninth floor of the Vaughn Center and is free and open to the public.

The keynote speaker is Shulamith Koenig, founder of PDHRE, People’s Movement for Human Rights Learning (formerly known as People’s Decade for Human Rights Education). King was one of five recipients of the 2003 UN Prize in the field of human rights. She will speak at noon.

Other scheduled events include:

  • “Human Rights or Corporate Rights? A Comparison of Democratic Processes in the United States and Greece” Steve Panageotou, University of Tennessee-Knoxville, 10:05 a.m.
  • Human Rights and Capital Punishment in France Cedric Michel, UT assistant professor of criminology and criminal justice, 10:35 a.m.
  • Mid-Florida American Civil Liberties Union and the Right to Vote Joyce Hamilton-Henry, ACLU of Florida director of advocacy, 11 a.m.
  • University of Tampa PULSE Program Gina Firth, UT associate dean of Wellness, Lisa Ryan, staff assistant II for the UT Wellness Center, and students, 11:30 a.m.
  • Constitutional Convention Bruce Friesen, UT associate professor of sociology, and students from Honors Introduction to Sociology, 2:30 p.m.
  • United Nations Association of the United States of America (UNA-USA) Panel Led by Denis Rey, UT associate professor of government and world affairs, and including UNA-USA board members Mark Amen, Kelly Miliziano and Michelle Zeller Geigle, 2:50 p.m.
  • Criminology Student Panel Led by Susan Brinkley, associate professor of criminology, 3:30 p.m.
  • Coalition of Immokalee Workers Screening and discussion of Food Chains, 4 p.m.

There will also be a performance of scenes from Lorca: His Life and Art by UT theatre students as well as a human rights art show during the lunch break from 1–2:30 p.m.

The conference is organized by Friesen and Marcus Arvan of the Human Rights Think Tank (, and is sponsored by UNA-USA, the Tampa Human Rights Council, the College of Social Sciences, Mathematics and Education, the Honors Program and the philosophy and religion, criminology and government and world affairs/history/sociology departments.

For more information, go to or contact Friesen at or (813) 257-3464, or Arvan at or (813) 257-3674.

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