GRINNELL, IA – Grinnell College’s Rosenfield Program in Public Affairs, International Relations, and Human Rights and the Center for International Studies will co-sponsor a symposium on domestic and international poverty, April 13-15, on the Grinnell College campus.
“The poverty symposium is the culmination of a year of program focus on human rights and social justice,” said Sarah Purcell, symposium organizer and director of the Rosenfield Program. “We will look at effective mechanisms to fight poverty—from policy to volunteerism—both domestically and internationally.
“We need to keep a focus on these issues, and our International Student Organization (ISO) is helping us do that with perspectives from their homelands, as well as from the U.S.,” Purcell said. More than 75 nations are represented among the Grinnell student body.
The poverty symposium public events include:
• Tues., Apr. 13, 4:15 p.m.: Jodie Levin-Epstein, deputy director of the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP), will offer perspectives on “More than a Dollar a Day: Poverty in the U.S.” Levin-Epstein, a 1972 graduate of Grinnell, has published extensively on poverty-related issues of paid sick leave, labor standards, and workplace flexibility. She received an honorary degree from Grinnell in 2009 for her work at the Washington, D.C.-based center to fight against poverty.
• Wed., Apr. 14, 8 p.m.: Kevin Casas-Zamora, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, will discuss “Walking on the Edge: Poverty, Democracy and Human Development in Latin America.” Casas-Zamora served as Costa Rica’s second vice president and minister of national planning and economic policy. In 2007 he was selected as Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and has worked as an international consultant in campaign finance.
• Thurs., Apr. 15, 11 a.m.: Randy Albelda, professor of economics and senior research fellow at the Center for Social Policy at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, will seek answers to “Who Cares?: Women, Poverty, and U.S. Anti-Poverty Policies for the 21st Century.” Albelda is a co-founder of the Academics Working Group on Poverty in Massachusetts, and is also associated with the publications “Feminist Economics” and “Dollars and Sense.”
• Thurs., Apr. 15 4:15 p.m.: Elizabeth Powley, founder and executive director of Every Child is My Child, will talk about her firsthand experiences with “Education in Africa: A Right and a Route Out of Poverty.” The Every Child organization is dedicated to providing secondary education for children in Rwanda and Burundi. A 1993 graduate, Powley is a former recipient of the Wall Alumni Service Award, which supports Grinnell graduates working in social service organizations.
• Thurs., Apr. 15, 8 p.m.: Members of Grinnell’s International Student Organization (ISO) will offer observations from their homelands in a panel on “International Perspectives on Poverty.” ISO members will display items that can be purchased in their home countries for only one dollar.
All symposium events are free and open to the public and will be held in the Joe Rosenfield '25 Center, 1115 8th Ave., unless otherwise noted. For more information about the Rosenfield Program, contact Sarah Purcell,purcelsj[at]grinnell[dot]edu, 641-269-3091.