Official Launch of the University Alliance for Refugees and At-Risk Migrants (UARRM)

Monday, July 23, 2018 08:45 am

College Avenue Student Center | Multipurpose Room | New Brunswick, NJ 

*Registration is now closed.

Join us for this one-day special event to mark the official launch of University Alliance for Refugees and At-Risk Migrants (UARRM). This conference will bring together vested parties across relevant sectors including refugees, at-risk migrants, faculty and scholars, student associations, education think tanks, legislators, local government, ecumenical education institutions, and United Nations agencies and other representatives of the international community.

Together, we will explore the UARRM’s mandate in action and push further on its expected outcomes in the near and medium-term.  In learning about current opportunities for supporting existing initiatives and new ones, this conference will pave the way for new strategies on collective actions across areas of work within the UARRM and alongside of it on:

  • increasing the number of funded scholarships for refugees and at-risk migrants at universities

  • supporting student-initiated efforts to protect and empower at-risk migrants and refugees in university communities

  • strengthening the bridge between secondary and tertiary educational opportunities, tying education to employment access

  • improving systems for the recognition of foreign academic credentials

  • educating the public and reshaping narratives about refugees and at-risk migrants

This event is free and open to the public and location and program are subject to change. Meals and materials will be given at this event, so please register in advance.

For more information on UARRM and this event, please contact Rutgers Graduate School–Newark graduate assistant Jane Roche or Rutgers Graduate School–Newark graduate assistant Hourie Tafech. This event is cosponsored by Rutgers Global and Rutgers Graduate School–Newark.


8:45 a.m.

Registration and Breakfast

9:15–9:30 a.m.

Welcome Remarks
Rick Garfunkel, Vice President for Global Affairs, Rutgers University

Opening Remarks: Universities as Potential Partners: How Can Universities Contribute to the Goals of the Global Compacts on Migration and Refugees 
Kyle Farmbry, Dean, Rutgers Graduate School–Newark

9:30–9:50 a.m.

Keynote Opening: Overview of the Global Compacts on Migration and Refugees
Suzanne Sheldon, Senior Policy Advisor, International Organization for Migration (IOM) – UN Migration Agency

9:50–10:50 a.m.

Panel Discussion 1: Reducing Barriers to Higher Education Opportunities for Refugees and At-Risk Migrants
Moderated by Annetta Stroud, Associate Director for Training and Program Development, American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO)
Jeremy Adelman, Director, Global History Lab, Princeton University
Sarah Willcox, Director, Scholar Rescue Fund, IIE

Rama Chakaki, Founder, edSeed

10:50 a.m.–11:50 p.m.

Panel Discussion 2: On-Campus Assistance and Community Empowerment
Moderated by Courtney Madsen, Director, Jersey City Immigration and Refugee Office, Church World Services

Diya Abdo, Founder, Every Campus a Refuge (ECAR)
Janet Reilly, Politics Faculty and Director of Refugee Initiatives, Sarah Lawrence College
Anju Gupta, Professor of Law and Director of Rutgers-Newark Immigrant Rights Clinic
Agnes Nzomene, Education and Employment Trainer, Catholic Charities 

12:05–1:15 p.m.

Lunch and Presentation
Documentary: The Newcomers, produced by Digital Humanities Initiative

1:15–2:15 p.m.

Panel Discussion 3: Advocacy–Student to President Engagement
Moderated by Prachi Rao, Field Organizer, Organizing & Activism Unit, Amnesty International USA
Miriam Feldblum, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Presidents' Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration
Esder Chong, President, RU Dreamers
Anjali Patel, Advocacy Director, No Lost Generation

2:15–3:30 p.m.

Panel Discussion 4: Developing Research Agendas to Shape Policy, Public Perception, and Humanitarian Intervention
Moderated by Anindita Dasgupta, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Columbia School of Social Work
; Co-investigator, ASPIRE Project 
Katherine Burke,
Deputy Director, Stanford Center for Innovation in Global Health, Stanford Refugee Research Project
Elizabeth Gibson, Steering Committee,
International Migrants Bill of Rights Initiative 
Georgeta Pourchet, Coordinator, International Refugee Research Project, Virginia Tech
Bernhard Streitwieser, Assistant Professor, International Education & International Affairs, George Washington University

3:30–3:45 p.m.

Coffee Break

3:45–4:45 p.m.

Panel Discussion 5: Changing Hearts and Shaping Minds Through Digital Communications and Curriculum Development
Moderated by Lydia Bassaly, Head of Recruitment and Translation/Interpretation Services, NaTakallam
John Bartle, Co-Director, The Refugee Project, Hamilton College
Maria Höhn, Founder of Vassar Refugee Solidarity and Faculty Director of the Consortium on Forced Migration, Displacement and  Higher Education 
Timothy Raphael, Director, Newest Americans, Rutgers–Newark

4:45–5:30 p.m.

Where to Now?
Colleen Thouez, Director, Welcoming and Integration Division, Open Society Foundations


College Avenue Student Center
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
126 College Avenue
New Brunswick, NJ 08901