Conferences & Exchanges

Bates brings scholars together from across cultural boundaries in settings outside the classroom.

Exchanges with historically black colleges

Bates provides opportunities for faculty-student exchange with Morehouse and Spelman Colleges, historically black institutions of higher learning for men and women.

African Arts Consortium

The Bates Dance Festival is a founding member of The Africa Contemporary Arts Consortium (TACAC), a landmark program designed to create and sustain a dynamic exchange of arts and ideas between artists, arts organizations and public communities throughout the United States and the African continent.

The Consortium is dedicated to developing, documenting, hosting, presenting and producing dance, music, theater, multidisciplinary and performance arts projects by African artists who are interpreting contemporary life through traditional, popular and/or contemporary forms.

Conference on diversity

In March, 2002, Bates College hosted the second annual CBB Diversity Conference, a program of workshops, lectures and performances organized by the students of Colby, Bates and Bowdoin colleges. Titled “In Our Backyard: Embracing Diversity in Our Communities,” the event was free and open to the public. The conference explored diversity in race, religion and sexuality.

Among conference topics were Somali culture in Lewiston; sexuality on campus; the impact of college on students’ religious beliefs; race relations in schools; town-gown relations; and the effects of Sept. 11 on people of Muslim belief or Middle Eastern background.

Scholarly conference on genocide

In 2006, Bates hosted scholars, human-rights advocates, and survivors of the 1994 genocide of the Tutsi in Rwanda for a conference titled “Rwanda: From National Disintegration to National Reunification: The Legacy of the Genocide of the Tutsi in Rwanda.”

The interdisciplinary gathering brought together speakers from Rwanda, Europe and the United States, including members of the Rwandan diaspora living in New England.

Diversity in Higher Education

In May, 2007, president  Elaine Tuttle Hansen hosted a public symposium focusing on the effect of demographic changes on higher education and Bates’ leadership role in building a College for “coming time.”

Learning in action

A plan by Bates College students to help support a home for street children in Rwanda won a $10,000 award from the 100 Projects for Peace program in April, 2007.

The  award enabled a group called Bates Students for Peace in Rwanda to assist a children’s home in a region hit especially hard by the 1994 genocide of Tutsis and moderate Hutus in that African nation.

The 10 Bates students in the group came together through “Documenting the Genocide of the Tutsi in Rwanda,” a course taught by Assistant Professor of French Alexandre Dauge-Roth. Dauge-Roth had his students strike up correspondences with Rwandans as a way of learning about the genocide on a personal level. More…