Projects for Peace: The Vision of Kathryn W. Davis

"My challenge to you is to bring about a mind-set of preparing for peace, instead of preparing for war."

Architects of Diversity

Project #
Bucknell University
  • Muhammad Ikmal Azman
  • Jason Wee

Architects of Diversity

Architects of Diversity

By delivering a weeklong program in English and Malay for 40 high-school students of diverse backgrounds across Malaysia, “Architects of Diversity” sought to break through what its organizers called “ethnoreligious silos” in their country.

Project leaders Muhammad Ikmal Azman of Bucknell and Jason Wee of Princeton are Malaysian graduates of United World College secondary schools, and their project won additional funding from the UWC International Office. The organizers built on a short-course model that has been offered by UWCs around the world. Other Malaysian UWC alumni helped organize and develop the summer program, which took place at an eco-resort in Malaysia’s Pahang state.

“Through interactive workshops, games, debates, and role-playing,” Muhammad Ikmal and Jason wrote in an online post, “participants will tackle the big question faced by societies that are defined by their difference: how do we best live together in tolerance and diversity?” By talking together about issues such as identity formation, multiculturalism, and social responsibility, participants were encouraged to express their own viewpoints with confidence and to connect empathetically with experiences different from their own.

Muhammad Ikmal and Jason hope the short course will be offered again through Malaysia’s UWC community, potentially in collaboration with other nonprofit or educational groups. “The program’s goal is that through personal testimony, these participants become seeds for peaceful understanding and deeper interrogation into conflict in their respective communities.”