Every Campus A Refuge

A Small College’s Engagement with Refugee Resettlement

in Migration and Society
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  • 1 Guilford College abdod@guilford.edu
  • 2 Guilford College cravenkl@guilford.edu

ABSTRACT

Every Campus A Refuge is a novel initiative whereby college campuses provide housing and support to refugees navigating the resettlement process in the United States. This article details the founding and development of the Every Campus A Refuge initiative, particularly as it has been implemented at Guilford College, a small liberal arts college in North Carolina. It also details how Guilford College faculty and students are engaging in a multifaceted research study to document the resettlement experiences of refugee families who participate in Every Campus A Refuge and to determine the efficacy of the program in providing a “softer landing” for refugees. Overall, this article aims to provide a detailed account of Every Campus A Refuge so as to show how such a program may be implemented at other college campuses.

In September 2015, witnessing the escalating numbers of Syrian refugees fleeing and perishing in search of a safe haven in Europe, Pope Francis called on every European parish to host a refugee family. While his call embodies the concept of “radical hospitality” in Catholic tradition, this gesture of generous and unquestioning welcome, of embracing the stranger, is germane to all faith traditions. The Every Campus A Refuge (ECAR) program was born at Guilford College in Greensboro, North Carolina in response to that call, after we asked ourselves a simple question: why can’t a campus be like a parish and temporarily host refugees, assisting them in resettlement in the local area? Parishes (small cities or towns) and university and college campuses are very similar. They possess much by way of material and human resources—housing, food, care, skills, and safety; indeed, in Arabic the word for a university or college campus quite literally means sanctuary. It also made sense for Guilford College, a Quaker-founded institution, to model such refuge. Its ethos and traditions are steeped in Quaker testimonies which advocate for community and justice-driven stewardship of resources. And Every Campus A Refuge would be but a twenty-first-century iteration of Guilford’s historical engagements. The woods on which Guilford College stands were part of the Underground Railroad where disenfranchised and dispossessed African-Americans journeyed from a terrible and dangerous present to a more optimistic future.

Process

Many colleges and universities around the world are engaging the refugee crisis and refugee resettlement in important and viable ways. For example, the College of Southern Idaho’s Refugee

Figure 1
Figure 1

Guilford College faculty, students, and staff gather to show support for hosting refugees on campus.

Photo credit: Kat Miller © Every Campus A Refuge. Published with permission.

Citation: Migration and Society 1, 1; 10.3167/arms.2018.010112

Center facilitates the resettlement of refugees in Twin Falls, Idaho (CSI Refugee Center n.d.). The University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s Center for New North Carolinians (CNNC) “promotes access and integration for immigrants and refugees in North Carolina by bridging newcomer populations with existing communities through direct service provision, research, and training” (CNNC n.d.). In Toronto, four large universities have established a comprehensive network of support for individuals and groups in Canada to sponsor Syrian refugee families as part of the Ryerson University Lifeline Syria Challenge (Ryerson University 2017). This initiative relies on student volunteers to assist sponsorship groups and refugees with various facets of the resettlement process, including translation, tutoring, and employment assistance.

What distinguishes the Every Campus A Refuge program is its stewardship of on-campus resources (specifically housing and other facilities) for use by refugees. Every Campus A Refuge, animated by the Pope’s call, mobilized Guilford College’s campus resources (within and without the institution’s physical borders) to provide housing and other forms of assistance to refugees seeking resettlement in our local area. The program’s first step was the creation of a partnership between Guilford and the Greensboro office of the refugee resettlement agency CWS. In conversations with the agency, we developed a refugee hosting initiative that best served their needs and standards and supported their goals in serving their clients. The program, first and foremost, meets one very important and immediate need for arriving refugees—housing. Affordable and appropriate housing is sparse generally, and this is very much the case in Greensboro, especially for single individuals (whose one-time government-issued stipend is insufficient) and large families or families with particular needs or vulnerabilities. For example, our first hosted guest was a member of a persecuted minority group in his country and hence would have been particularly vulnerable in that community here. Our third hosted family was a seven-member family whose specific mobility needs could not be met by any then-available housing. Our fourth hosted family of 11 members was too large for any affordable housing available at the time of their arrival. We are also able to provide on-campus facilities that contribute to meaningful resettlement. For example, a father in one of the hosted refugee families was an artist and calligraphist in his home country of Iraq. The Guilford College art department was able to provide him with free use of private studio space and art supplies as well as display space in the college’s art gallery to exhibit his work (from December 2017 to March 2018). These opportunities allowed him to produce and market his work in ways that enhanced his resettlement experience beyond mere survival.

Thus far, Guilford College has hosted 42 refugees (clients of CWS) from Africa and the Middle East (including two Syrian families) whose cultural, class, linguistic, and faith backgrounds have been very diverse. Twenty-three of the hosted refugees have been children aged 10 months to 17 years. School-aged children were enrolled in a nearby public school focused on serving newcomers (children of newly arrived immigrants and refugees). While on our campus, the hosted refugees resided in whatever campus house or apartment was available at the time of their arrival; hence, each family’s hosting period varied depending on the availability of their housing (ranging from one month to eight months, averaging four months). In May 2017, however, Every Campus A Refuge was assigned a campus house dedicated to its mission that will streamline the hosting period to five months per family. All of the houses/apartments were furnished according to CWS standards. Utilities, Wi-Fi, and use of college facilities and resources (classes, gym, library, cafeteria, etc.) were also provided free of charge. Other facilities are available depending on the particular family’s needs and interests. This material and housing support allows family members to save up the very limited stipend they receive from the US government upon arrival (a one-time $925 per person) and reduces their immediate stress about finances.

While on our campus, family members receive their social security numbers and breadwinners usually become employed off campus. This allows the family to more successfully select and attain their preferred housing when they leave our campus, for at that point they are armed with greater knowledge of Greensboro and what its various communities have to offer, and a greater likelihood of being approved by leasing offices that insist on renting to individuals with credit history, social security numbers, and proof of employment. Support for each hosted family continues after they transition off campus; we also pay their security deposits and first month’s rent through funds raised by the program (either through donations or from community engagement and outreach college funds available through programs, student clubs, and organizations).

The various resettlement tasks that ensure successful refugee resettlement (such as medical and Department of Social Services appointments) are assigned by the refugee resettlement agency CWS, while cultural, social, and other arising tasks are assigned by the ECAR program coordinator. The family’s CWS case manager and the ECAR program coordinator oversee the 100+ volunteers who carry out these tasks. Background checked and trained by CWS, these volunteers are Guilford students, alumni, faculty, administrators, and staff; their spouses; faculty, students, and staff from nearby Bennett College; local high schools; local faith communities; and Guilford friends. Volunteers provide airport welcome, prepare campus housing, raise and collect funds and in-kind donations, share meals, act as cultural brokers, provide interpretation, assist with childcare and job-hunting, make important resettlement appointments, and assist with shopping, transportation, filling out government forms, finding off-campus housing, and moving off campus. They continue to assist with goals set during the hosting period, such as acquiring the General Education Development (GED) certificate or a driver’s license. Volunteers also take case notes for CWS’s files.

By utilizing their personal skills and passions towards the common goal of supporting the hosted refugees, our volunteers receive a powerful experiential education on pressing global issues (the refugee crisis and forced displacement) and local concerns (immigrant and refugee life in Greensboro). The program coordinator and case manager solicit feedback from the hosted refugees and volunteers and communicate with each other about the progress of our collaboration and the experiences of all involved. They discuss and refine the design, implementation, and efficacy of the program and reflect on and improve its best practices.

Another community partner, the New Arrivals Institute (NAI), trains our volunteers to provide English as a Second Language (ESL) instruction to the hosted refugees. Reciprocally, our trained volunteers also provide ESL instruction to NAI’s (non-ECAR) clients. As an asset-based community of practice, ECAR engages other community partners: our local co-ops (e.g. Deep Roots Market), local schools (e.g. Early College at Guilford, whose students receive service learning credit for volunteering), and faith communities (e.g. Quaker meeting houses). These provide human, financial, and in-kind support.

Guilford and Every Campus A Refuge’s relationship with our community partners is one of co-education. Community partners provide valuable education and training to our students who then give back and assist in refugee resettlement, language acquisition, and community organizing. We also speak to each other’s communities about our respective work and frequently collaborate in bringing valuable educational material and important discussions and conversations to our larger shared communities through co-planning and sponsorship of various events. This collaboration has been key in confronting and addressing one of the greatest obstacles to refugee assistance and resettlement programs, and one that makes college and university administrators balk at implementing the ECAR program: the fear of and myths surrounding refugees. Together with our community partners, we have been able to raise awareness, within and without our campus, about who and what refugees are. Additionally, we push against discourses that cast refugees as “thieves,” competing with, draining, and stealing resources from the more “deserving” underprivileged local residents. We highlight the ways in which our institution and many others are already serving their local communities in myriad ways and how such binary thinking (“us” or “them”) perpetuates the myth of scarcity and distracts from the fact that there are, indeed, enough resources for everybody.

Deeply Engaged Academia

Through Every Campus A Refuge, our campus and local communities are learning a great deal about refugee and forced displacement issues, and our volunteers are receiving a place-based experiential education on the joys and challenges of local resettlement in ways connected to real rather than hypothetical individuals. The program also prepares our students for engaging diverse populations in their lives and future careers. But our students have also been using their disciplinary skills to support the program in indirect ways. They have produced content for the ECAR website, created art pieces for ECAR’s public material, crafted podcasts for the initiative’s public fora, taken on the role of program coordinator, and presented on the program in public venues such as the UN. These students’ experiences have allowed us to conceptualize a broader curricular engagement around the refugee crisis and refugee resettlement and to design a “Principled Problem-Solving Experience” minor around Every Campus A Refuge, which piloted at Guilford in the fall of 2017. The ECAR minor formalizes/curricularizes the educational components of the initiative and engages students in disciplinary, interdisciplinary, and place-based experiences that facilitate:

  1. 1)learning about forced displacement and (im)migration;
  2. 2)centralizing the voices, agency, and perspectives of refugees and (im)migrants;
  3. 3)emphasizing the nature and significance of organizing and advocacy;
  4. 4)participation in the place-based educational processes of resettlement and community building.
Thus, the various elements of the minor are designed to engage the students in learning about what forced displacement is and why it happens; who the individuals are who experience it and what their perspectives are; how we can collectively address the problems of forced displacement and resettlement; and doing the work of principled problem solving in refugee resettlement.

The minor requires a minimum of four college courses. The course offerings involve collaboration among a team of several faculty members—including an adjunct instructor—from various departments and disciplines. Each faculty member has included a course assignment (designed by the instructor in discussion with the team) that engages students in making and reflecting on connections between their learning in the course and their work in hosting/resettling ECAR-hosted refugees. The core requirement for the minor is a course entitled “Every Campus A Refuge Theory and Praxis”—a full college course split over two semesters. In this course, students:

  1. 1)learn about various topics related to refugeeism, forced displacement, im(migration), and resettlement through assigned readings, guest lectures by community partners, local experts, and acclaimed authors;
  2. 2)engage in 13 hours of Skype conversations with refugees around the world through the program NaTakallam;1
  3. 3)receive training from our partnering resettlement agency (CWS) and community partner NAI;
  4. 4)select, research, and implement an inter/disciplinary advocacy, problem-solving, or other type of ECAR engagement project on which future students can build;
  5. 5)volunteer for 40 hours with the ECAR families or other CWS clients, including, but not exclusive to, participation in the various aspects of hosting the family and implementation of resettlement tasks;
  6. 6)reflect on their learning and experiences through weekly discussion meetings and journals.
In designing the curricular components of the program, a key question emerged and was intentionally addressed: how do we balance the needs of our students and the institution with the needs of the refugees we are hosting? For us, the arising tension centered specifically on how we can provide the best education possible for our students without compromising, in any way, the privacy and agency of the hosted refugees. While we understood that our students needed to learn and gain information, we also knew that this needed to happen without “exploiting” or “mining” the refugees we were hosting for information or asking them to engage with students in ways that they (the refugees) could not refuse. We decided immediately that this meant that the refugees we are hosting would not be used as “resources” for our students’ learning or for information. For example, in centralizing the voice, agency, and perspective of refugees, our students would be learning about refugee experiences from paid Conversation Partners through NaTakallam or by reading published testimonials and narratives. Additionally, the ethos of the program is intentionally embedded in every facet of the minor—from the training students receive via CWS to their assignments and class discussions—which emphasizes respect for the privacy, agency, and dignity of all community members. While our students would be learning
Figure 2
Figure 2

Artwork by Guilford alumna Laura Todd

© Every Campus A Refuge. Published with permission.

Citation: Migration and Society 1, 1; 10.3167/arms.2018.010112

about resettlement in Greensboro through assisting the refugees we host in the resettlement process, they are not interviewing the refugees we host while they are staying on our campus. This did not mean that conversations and friendships did not happen naturally and organically, but any information was held in the strictest confidence as enforced by the program’s privacy policy and signed confidentiality agreements. Additionally, one important way in which we address competing needs or tensions between student expectations, institutional goals, and community needs is to emphasize how these are not competing or in tension but are rather intersectional and wholistic. We are all parts of, and not apart from, each other and the respect for and health of the one contributes to the health of the whole.

Studying How ECAR Affects Refugees’ Resettlement Experiences

ECAR promotes and enacts meaningful engagement on Guilford’s campus by fostering a common vision and collaboration across all college units. The common goal of hosting and supporting refugees brings together faculty, staff, and students from many departments, clubs, student government bodies, as well as various offices: Career Services, Housing and Facilities, and Public Safety to name a few. Because of this collective community engagement, the refugees’ experience on our campus extends beyond physical shelter and material support.

Indeed, one of the main goals of ECAR, and refugee resettlement agencies more generally, is to help refugees integrate successfully into their receiving community. Scholars, such as John Berry (1997), suggest that integration involves newcomers maintaining strong connections to their cultural heritage while also seeking and building new relationships with other cultural groups in the communities in which they have resettled. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees posits that integration also entails feeling a sense of belonging in one’s receiving community and achieving economic stability such that one can establish “a standard of living comparable to their host community” (2011: 7). Expanding this notion of integration, Alastair Ager and Alison Strang (2008) put forth a multidimensional definition of integration that includes the aforementioned social and economic indicators in addition to access to housing, education, and health services. Research suggests that when immigrants and refugees successfully integrate, they experience increased mental and physical health and psychological well-being (Liebkind 2003), positive adaptation to their new community (Berry 1997), and economic success (Danzer and Ulku 2011).

Considering that ECAR and CWS aim to help refugees successfully integrate into their new communities, we believe it is imperative to examine how these efforts influence the experiences of refugees. Moreover, because ECAR is attempting to reduce some of the stresses of resettlement among refugees through the provision of more material resources and robust social support than is currently provided by most local resettlement agencies, it is important to examine how such initiatives may affect the process of integration and associated outcomes for refugees. Thus, the authors partnered with two undergraduate Guilford College students, Rehshetta Wells and Michelle Harris (both Community and Justice Studies majors), to design and conduct a study of the efficacy of ECAR.

The aims of the study are to: (1) document and analyze the experiences of resettlement of refugees over time; (2) ascertain how experiences of integration and associated outcomes (social, psychological, physical, and material well-being) are affected by the type of resettlement support one receives; and (3) determine if and how ECAR is alleviating some of the stresses and challenges typically associated with the resettlement process. The study was originally designed to be comparative in nature, documenting the resettlement experiences of refugees who participate in ECAR in addition to those who do not participate in ECAR but who receive services and support from CWS. Such a design would provide insight into the efficacy of ECAR in providing a “softer landing” for refugee families. Due to logistical issues with finding matching individuals or families for the study who have not participated in ECAR, as of September 2018 we have only been able to complete data collection with solely ECAR participants. However, we have been able to address some of these logistical challenges and have found matching families for the two most recent families who have participated in ECAR.

To ascertain participants’ experiences of resettlement and overall well-being, as well as the efficacy of ECAR in providing a “softer landing” for refugees as they navigate the social and physical landscape of Greensboro, we are administering a structured survey, conducting semi-structured interviews, and facilitating a social network mapping activity with each participant, which are detailed below. All ECAR participants over the age of 14 years are invited to participate in the study (both assent and consent forms are required for participants between 14 and 17 years of age). Each of these data collection tools is administered at multiple points to examine resettlement experiences over a period of time. As such, data are collected: (1) as soon as the individual or family moves off campus2 (usually three to five months after arriving in the US); (2) approximately six to eight months after arriving in the US (which is shortly after the time participants will be expected to be financially self-sufficient); (3) approximately 12 months after being resettled in the US; and (4) approximately two years after arriving in the US. Each phase of data collection takes approximately three to five hours to complete per individual. At each stage of the research process every participant receives a $50 Visa gift card to provide some compensation for their time.

The survey tool includes 158 items that measure the aforementioned indicators of well-being that are affected by the process of resettlement, including measures of: acculturation (Berry 1997); one’s ability to meet one’s material needs as indicated by employment status, income level, and housing stability (Ager and Strang 2008); and social, psychological, and physical well-being (Blake et al. 1995; Gray et al. 2004; McHorney et al. 1994; Peterson et al. 2008).

We are also conducting semi-structured interviews with study participants to develop a more nuanced and in-depth understanding of individuals’ and families’ experiences of resettlement in Greensboro over time. In these interviews, we ask participants to elaborate on their experiences of resettlement and the nature of the support they receive via ECAR, CWS, and beyond. For example, we ask participants to describe multiple facets of their experience of living on campus and in Greensboro, accessing crucial support services, and navigating the physical and social landscape of Greensboro and the United States.

Finally, to better understand the composition of participating refugees’ social support networks and how ECAR and CWS are contributing to the development of these networks, social network analysis is being employed. A social network survey and mapping activity is conducted with participants each time the survey and interview are administered. Participants are asked to create an ego network by listing and mapping people who play an important role in their lives, their level of closeness with that person, and the kind of support (informational assistance, emotional support, practical assistance; negative support) they receive from and/or provide to each person. Participants are also asked to indicate how they met each individual in their network (e.g. via ECAR, CWS, their neighborhood, etc.). These social network maps are intended to illustrate if and how participants’ social networks change over time, and if ECAR and/or CWS may have a mediating effect on this process.

As of September 2018, thirteen ECAR participants have participated in this study. Although we do not have enough data at this point to ascertain the efficacy of ECAR, there are some emergent themes in the data we have collected thus far that illustrate the ways in which ECAR has influenced participating individuals’ resettlement experiences. One emergent theme illustrates the importance of campus volunteers in helping newly arrived refugees feel welcome in their new home. For example, one ECAR participant stated:

What surprised me was the day I came to America … I came frightened, like a foot backwards and a foot forward … I was scared, but when I came and was surprised at the airport with the welcome, [ECAR volunteers] welcomed us … the students and the organization. Believe me, I felt like I was with my family … I was relieved, I was relaxed … I started crying. I felt that I wasn’t a stranger [in a] strange country.

Similarly, many ECAR participants we have interviewed thus far have indicated that they have developed close bonds with ECAR volunteers while living on campus: “I enjoyed the college a lot to be honest with you … the students didn’t leave me or made me feel that I was sitting at home. [It] was [as] if I was sitting between my daughters and my sons. I felt as if they were my family.” Such comments suggest that individuals are receiving important forms of social support early on in their resettlement process as a result of their participation in ECAR.
Several participants also remarked that they have received important instrumental support as a result of ECAR. One individual shared that the provision of material goods by ECAR helped him develop financial stability within a few months of arriving in the US:

I got a shelter from ECAR for four months. And that was most important on my side because it settled me, settled my life in ways, you know. And that four months I had time to work. I worked after one month, and I saved some things, a little money. For food it helped me … [it also] helped my child in my home country, because I have a child and I helped to send some financial assistance.

Another ECAR participant indicated that she always felt that her needs were met when living on campus: “When I came and stayed at the college … believe me they didn’t make me feel in need. You know what I mean by they didn’t make us feel in need? Because if I wanted to go get some stuff, the car will be out the door [waiting to pick me up] … I didn’t feel in need at all.”
As noted earlier, due to the sensitive and traumatic nature of many refugees’ experiences of violence and/or persecution in their home country, both ECAR and CWS emphasize the importance of respecting each individual’s privacy. As such, ECAR and CWS volunteers receive training around protecting the privacy of each refugee with whom they interact. The ECAR participants we have interviewed to date have indicated that they felt their privacy was protected when they lived at the college. One ECAR participant stated that campus volunteers respected his privacy as they did not request details about his personal life or ask him to reveal why he left his home country:

[My privacy] was very respected … and I do appreciate that … I stayed with different volunteers, different people from Guilford College, and nobody asked me about my privacy because many try to ask sometime, “Why you are there? Why you came there [to the US]?” … But no one [at Guilford College], none tried to do that … nobody told me, that “I heard about you like this” … So I really appreciate that.

Another ECAR participant similarly stated: “They respected [my privacy]. No, they are very respectful and respected it a lot, a lot, a lot … they don’t overstep about anything at all … just like I told you, they come to check up on me [and see] what I need, what I want, and that’s it.”

Overall, our preliminary results suggest that ECAR participants have had positive experiences living on campus and have received important forms of support via ECAR. Only minor logistical issues have been raised by a few participants thus far, such as finding the on-campus housing too large to maintain and keep clean. However, overwhelmingly ECAR participants have indicated that they have received crucial forms of material and social support on campus which has helped them ease into life in the US. Such findings suggest that ECAR may indeed be providing a “softer landing” for the refugees it hosts.

Conclusion

As an institutional engagement program and a curriculum, ECAR has allowed us to collaborate with community partners in sustainable and reciprocal ways around refugee and resettlement concerns. We lift up our partners’ work and co-educate our communities as we support the refugees we host and transform the lives of the volunteers who learn so much in the process. We also strive to implement this idea beyond our own campus by calling on every college and university around the world (as the Pope called on every parish) to do the same, providing them with best practices and guidance in becoming a campus refuge. We share with interested institutions how to adapt the initiative in ways that are effective and ethical and that support the partnering refugee resettlement agency and their refugee clients—safeguarding their privacy, dignity, and agency while engaging and educating their campus communities. These best practices include input from all involved: community partners, hosted refugees, Guilford departments and offices, and volunteers. Six campuses around the US have already joined the effort and have partnered with their local refugee resettlement agencies to temporarily host refugees and assist them in resettlement in their own “parishes”—their campuses, cities, and towns. These include Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina; Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania; Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida; and Agnes Scott College

Figures 3–5
Figures 3–5

ECAR representatives speaking, exhibiting, and listening at the first UN Together Summit.

© Every Campus A Refuge. Published with permission.

Citation: Migration and Society 1, 1; 10.3167/arms.2018.010112

in Decatur, Georgia. More are mobilizing to follow suit, including Georgetown University and Princeton University. We are able to build this national network through the various academic conferences, meetings, and publications dedicated to enhancing academia’s engagement with experiential learning and global concerns. Given the recent US Executive Orders which have significantly limited the number of refugees resettled to the country, our goal is to raise awareness of the program on an international scale and mobilize college and university campuses in Europe and the Arab world. Guilford College joined the UN Academic Impact (UNAI),3 an initiative open to all institutions of higher education. Guilford College and Every Campus A Refuge were then recommended by the United Nations Department of Public Information to join the United Nations Together Campaign.4 The UN Together Campaign Summit, held on 9 January 2018 at the UN Headquarters in New York City and led by De Montfort University (DMU), focused on how colleges and universities around the world can take action to aid in the global refugee crisis. De Montfort invited Guilford College and Every Campus A Refuge to participate in the summit, which culminated in the 10 invited universities (from the US, Brazil, Cyprus, the UK, Germany, and China) signing the UN Together Campaign Action Charter to pledge their active support to promote “respect, safety, and dignity for refugees and migrants.” On 7 June 2018, we participated in a second summit where a Guilford student presented on the ECAR minor. By exhibiting ECAR’s work and speaking about it in front of hundreds of students and university representatives from around the world at the UN, we hope to reach a wider, more international platform of higher education.

We believe that if more campuses joined this movement of “radical hospitality” and compassionate welcome, then more refugees can be resettled more quickly and easily; underfunded refugee resettlement agencies would get more support; and a softer landing for resettling refugees would be facilitated through additional financial, cultural, and social support. Importantly, by committing their resources to welcoming and supporting refugees, institutions of higher education can powerfully and positively shape their communities’ and broader public discourses around “others.” In the current political climate, where xenophobia and fear-mongering around immigrants, refugees, and migrants run rampant, such positive intervention and hospitality are direly needed. To find out more, please visit www.everycampusarefuge.net.

NOTES
1

NaTakallam is a non-profit organization that pairs student learners with displaced individuals all over the world through Skype conversations (https://natakallam.com/). While it initially began as an Arabic language learning platform, their work has expanded to conversations in English revolving around class content and goals. Students fill out questionnaires and are matched by NaTakallam with CPs (Conversation Partners) based on their interests and schedules. The fees the institution pays to NaTakallam (with the exception of overheads) go to the CPs. ECAR students discussed with their CPs what they were learning in their classes and community-based work about refugeeism and resettlement.

2

We wait until ECAR participants move off campus to ask them if they are interested in participating in the study, to reduce the possibility that individuals may feel obliged to participate in the study while receiving support from ECAR.

3

The UNAI is “an initiative that aligns institutions of higher education with the United Nations in actively supporting and contributing to the realization of UN goals and mandates including the promotion and protection of human rights, access to education, sustainability and conflict resolution” (https://academicimpact.un.org/content/about-unai, last accessed 19 October 2018).

4

The UN Together Campaign “is a United Nations campaign that promotes respect, safety, and dignity for refugees and migrants” (https://together.un.org/, last accessed 19 October 2018).

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Contributor Notes

DIYA ABDO is Associate Professor of English at Guilford College. Her teaching, research, and scholarship focus on Arab women writers and Arab and Islamic feminisms. She has also published poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Her public essays focus on the intersection of gender, political identity, and vocation. She is also the founder and director of Every Campus A Refuge, an initiative that advocates for housing refugees on campus grounds and assisting them in resettlement in the local area. Featured in The Chronicle of Higher Education, NPR and in The Washington Post, the initiative has won national awards for civic engagement in higher education.

KRISTA CRAVEN is Assistant Professor of Justice and Policy Studies at Guilford College. Over the past several years she has been engaging in activism and participatory action research with a group of undocumented immigrant youth activists in Nashville, Tennessee. Since arriving in Greensboro in 2014, Krista has also been working with a local immigrant rights group on a study of immigrant detention in the Triad region and she has been involved in designing and conducting a study of the Guilford College Every Campus A Refuge initiative.

Migration and Society

Advances in Research

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    Guilford College faculty, students, and staff gather to show support for hosting refugees on campus.

    Photo credit: Kat Miller © Every Campus A Refuge. Published with permission.

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    Artwork by Guilford alumna Laura Todd

    © Every Campus A Refuge. Published with permission.

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    ECAR representatives speaking, exhibiting, and listening at the first UN Together Summit.

    © Every Campus A Refuge. Published with permission.

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  • Gray, Matt J., Brett T. Litz, Julie L. Hsu, and Thomas W. Lombardo. 2004. “Psychometric Properties of the Life Events Checklist.” Assessment 11 (4): 330341. doi:10.1177/1073191104269954.

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  • Liebkind, Karmela. 2003. “Acculturation.” In Blackwell Handbook of Social Psychology: Intergroup Processes, ed. Rupert Brown and Samuel L. Gaertner, 386406. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers Ltd.

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  • McHorney, Collen A., John E. Ware, J.F. Rachel Lu, and Cathy D. Sherbourne. 1994. “The MOS 36-Item Short-Form Health Survey (SF-36): III. Tests of Data Quality, Scaling Assumptions, and Reliability across Diverse Patient Groups.” Medical Care 32 (1): 4066.

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  • Peterson, N. Andrew, Paul W. Speer, and David W. McMillan. 2008. “Validation of a Brief Sense of Community Scale: Confirmation of the Principal Theory of Sense of Community.” Journal of Community Psychology 36 (1): 6173. doi:10.1002/jcop.20217.

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  • United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. 2011. The Benefits of Belonging: Local Integration Options and Opportunities for Host Countries, Communities and Refugees. Geneva: United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

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