• Park University Teach-In

    Uniting to teach the value of inclusion, diversity, and global citizenship

  • Leading by Example

    On January 27, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order regarding immigration that affects passport holders of seven countries - Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. As history is known to repeat itself, Park University prides itself in continuing to offer a safe-haven for our students. At this time, Park University faculty want to show our solidarity for our international students. We are encouraging faculty to spend a few minutes talking about inclusivity, diversity, etc. in their classes.


    Please send us (innovate@park.edu) your discussion questions, activities, and readings to share with your colleagues.

    Teaching Materials

    Below are materials provided by Park faculty members.

    Activity related to civil liberties but not in direct response to EO:

    Included below are a couple of readings written after September 11th that might inspire some interesting discussion:


    “Security Versus Civil Liberties” by Richard A. Posner



    “Protecting Dr. King’s Legacy: Justice and Liberty in the Wake of September 11th” by Nadine Strossen



    The following discussion questions relate to the above readings and are taken from Citizenship Now, a Longman Topics Reader, by Jon Ford and Marjorie Ford (2004).

    Questions for Discussion

    1. What approach to civil liberties does Posner propose? Explain why you agree or disagree with his point of view.
    2. How does Posner use Supreme Court Justice Richard Jackson’s decision on free speech to support his claim that civil liberties should be curtailed to protect the nation from the kind of terrorism evident in the events of September 11, 2001?
    3. According to Posner, why do the lessons of history confirm his position that we need heightened security at the expense of liberties in times when our nation is at grave risk? Explain why you agree or disagree with Posner’s point of view.
    4. How and why does Posner use the example of President Abraham Lincoln’s unconstitutional acts during the Civil War that showed how ‘legality must sometimes be sacrificed or other values’ to advance his own argument? Why does Posner also argue for a shift of emphasis on the detection of drug dealers to the detection of terrorists? Why do you think he ends his argument on this note? Is this an effective way to conclude?
    5. Strossen invokes the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. in her introductory remarks and elsewhere in her comments. What is the purpose of her references to King? Do you think it is relevant for her to bring up King in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks?
    6. How have certain civil and legal rights been suspended in detention and questioning under the Patriot Act and related laws? How have the rights of a terrorist suspect to attorney-client privacy and an open trial been compromised? How well does Strossen establish the unjust nature of these disruptions and curtailments of rights? What counterarguments could be made in defense of these curtailments under the current crisis situation?
    7. How have spying and sharing of data on suspects increased and become less controlled by law and civil rights under the Patriot Act? How does Strossen use the history of FBI harassment to emphasize the dangers of giving this agency too much power over our lives?
    8. In the final section of her address, Strossen makes five proposals to help maintain a better balance of powers under the Patriot Act. Do her proposals seem reasonable and clearly stated?

    Discussion questions related to Parkville campus Teach-in Event:

    • How does children/young adult literature add to an understanding of others' life experiences (i.e., refugee, immigrant, special populations, etc.)?
    • Do you support the immigration executive order? Why or why not?
    • If you support the order, did you know that no refugees from countries included in the travel ban have killed anyone in terrorist attacks on American soil (http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/30/politics/immigration-stats-by-the-numbers-trnd/)? Does this statistic change your mind? If not, explain.
    • Have the media exaggerated the negative response to the immigration order? Have they presented balanced coverage of the controversy, or have those supporting the order been largely ignored by the media? Discuss.
    • How do human rights and social justice impact how we interpret and act upon the President's new executive order regarding immigration?

    • What communication strategies or interventions might work best to support human rights and social justice?

    Presentations from the Parkville campus Teach-in Event:

    "Refugees and Literature" - presented by Gail Hennessy, Assistant Professor of Education and Dr. Shannon Cuff, Associate Professor of Literacy Education

    Short Videos that might inspire discussion:

    "Migrants and Refugees: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO)"



    "Finding Refuge: 60 Minutes (CBS)"


    Reports by Steve Younblood about Syrian Refugees:

    Audio report: Refugees in Beirut, Lebanon

    Photos: Adana, Turkey refugee camp

    Slideshow: Syrian refugee tent city, Adana, Turkey

    Blog: Reporting Syrian refugees in Salzburg, Austria

    Report from KSHB TV about Syrian student at Park University:

    TV news story: Syrian finds home at Park University

    Report from KSHB TV about Syrian student at Park University:

    TV news story: Syrian finds home at Park University

    Website: Statistics about refugee terrorist “threat”:

    Statistics: Refugees and Immigrants: Dangerous?

  • Importing Canvas Commons

    Online faculty are able to add a discussion question to their online courses this week via Canvas Commons. To import from Canvas Commons, click the following guide. To learn how to add items, such as discussions, to a module, click the following guide.

  • How Can Students Make a Difference?

    Actions speak louder than words. Students look to educators for guidance so they can change the world. Let's give them answers!

    • Research and donate to preferred charities
    • Contact your senators and representatives. Calls are best. Emails are better than nothing. Find your senators' contact information here and your representatives' contact information here
    • Read one or all of the 25 Great Books by Refugees in America
    • Link to for ways for students to take action
    • For additional help and information, students may contact:

    Campus Safety: (816) 584-6444

    Office of International Students: (816) 584-6820

    Dean of Students: (816) 584-6595

    Counseling Center: (816) 584-6798

    Legal Questions: (816) 584-6559

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