The Peace and Justice Institute at Valencia College promotes peace and justice for all. Our aim is to nurture an inclusive, caring and respectful environment on campus and within our community - one where conflict leads to growth and transformation, rather than violence or aggression.
Studying peace benefits all of us--it leads to better people and better societies. It provides a new approach and philosophy toward conflict transformation. It allows people to make a difference by "being the peace" in their own relationships, their neighborhood, the college campus, and even the world.
The importance of advancing peacebuilding and community healing responses to societal challenges is more critical today than ever before. And community colleges - as democracy's colleges - are best positioned to be the catalysts for important change. No community college has taken this more to heart than Valencia College. The Peace and Justice Institute at Valencia is a model that should be adopted not only by other community colleges, but by all institutions of higher education in advancing peace in communities today.-- David J. Smith
Author: "Peace Jobs: A Student's Guide to Starting a Career Working for Peace"
President, Forage Center for Peacebuilding and Humanitarian Education, Inc.
Lives have been changed for the better as our members have learned to identify the places of unconsciousness in their own psyches. They have seen and begun to heal different aspects of internalized racism, sexism and good old fashioned mis-understanding. The work of the Peace & Justice Institute is powerful, insightful and transformative.-- Rev. Cynthia Alice Anderson
Senior Minister, Christ Church Unity
If education is to rediscover its potential in this age, then programs like PJI, grounded in the profound, creative principle of nonviolence will show us the way. If there are any programs like PJI! Through ten years of patient, dedicated work by director Rachel Allen and the many who have been inspired by the same vision, PJI has become a searchlight showing how education can be what it was supposed to be: a pathway for students to discover the "practical idealist" within them. Peace and nonviolence are the way to restore human meaning and dignity, and thus the essential components of meaningful education today, as PJI knows.-- Michael Nagler
Author of The Search for a Nonviolent Future: A Promise of Peace for Ourselves, Our Families, and Our World and Founder and President of the Metta Center for Nonviolence