Shimer and IIT Team Up with One Chicago, One Nation
This spring, Shimer College and Illinois Institute of Technology are joining with One Chicago, One Nation to bring interfaith dialogue to campus. Shimer student Mohini Lal (photo below) and IIT student Utsav Gandhi applied for and received $2000 in Community Ambassadorship grants from OCON. The money is specifically to create a program that encourages discussion on faith and non-faith topics while creating real community action.
“I know how effective youth participation can be,” Utsav said. “I just wished to be a part of that framework here in Chicago.”
The two students have extended the partnership to the Bridgeport community via Benton House, a not-for-profit community center. This project will culminate in a faith-based celebration at Benton House where a variety of performers, such as slam poets, singers, and dancers will perform and speak about their faith. Those who volunteer that day will gain free entry into a concert at Benton House that night. Everyone else can pay a low cover charge with all proceeds going to Benton House.
Though Shimer and IIT follow different approaches to education, both schools are excited about the opportunity to bridge the gap between the students.
“The assumption is that the existence of faith and non-faith belief systems is divisive, but this campus has many people of different faiths who coexist in peace,” said Lal. “I think this is a good place to start a bigger conversation about how we manage to live together without clashing.”