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'Let's do something'

4/2/2013

By DAWNE LEIKER

dleiker@dailynews.net

The first Global Issues Summit, which took place Monday on the Fort Hays State University campus, offered students insight into critical international and domestic topics.

Sponsored by FHSU's Global Leadership Project, summit organizers hoped to show students how they can affect issues such as human trafficking, environmental sustainability and hunger relief.

"Other campuses have issue days where they do tables where students can walk by and get information," said Kelly Nuckolls, Global Leadership Project co-coordinator. "But we thought about something a little more meaningful where they could actually do a workshop and create an action plan for their campus."

Breakout sessions were facilitated by Rick McNary, vice president for strategic partnerships at Outreach Inc. and treasurer of the Alliance to End Hunger; Karen Countryman-Roswurm, assistant professor of social work at Wichita State University and executive director for the Center for Combatting Human Trafficking; and Ben Champion, Kansas State University director of sustainability.

Nuckolls, an FHSU senior who has been with the Global Leadership Project for two years, said she anticipated students would benefit from the summit by learning they can be global leaders without having to leave Hays. In addition, she said she hopes international students attending the summit will bring some of the summit's information back to their native countries.

"They (international students) are just so excited and so happy to be involved in these kinds of things, so I'm just so excited that we have some international students here," Nuckolls said.

More than 70 students from social sciences, natural sciences and humanities classes attended the summit. Tre' Giles, co-coordinator of the Global Leadership Project, said he was optimistic students would get a spark from the summit that could influence them toward action.

"It's time for us to actually do something," he said. "Because we're at the perfect age. ... Perfect setting.

"And I just want the students to make a change. I want it to grow into 'Let's do something,' rather than 'Let's learn about something.' "