community involvement

SMU law students to spend Spring Break 2017 representing detained immigrant women, children in Karnes, Texas

Karnes City Family Detention Center

Detained immigrant children line up in the cafeteria at the Karnes County Residential Center (Photo by Eric Gay of The Associated Press courtesy of National Public Radio)

About an hour outside of San Antonio, hundreds of undocumented immigrant and refugee women and children who fled violence in their home countries are detained at the Karnes City Family Detention Center, faced with the threat of deportation from an administration that wants them gone.

Starting Sunday, March 12, 2017, a team of eight SMU Dedman School of Law students (led by professor and immigration law expert Natalie Nanasi) will spend their spring break providing pro bono legal services to these undocumented immigrants, hoping to win them asylum in the United States.

The Karnes City center, operated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, has been open since 2014, housing women and children who have crossed the border into the South Texas.

“A majority of the Karnes City detainees are coming from El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala and fleeing gang violence, family violence or some combination thereof,” Nanasi said. “Their trip is supremely dangerous. Many don’t make it, and that’s something important to remember; these people flee because they know that if their daughters stay there, it’s certain they’ll be raped, and if their sons stay there, it’s certain they’ll be kidnapped by gangs.”

— Kenny Ryan

> Read the full story from SMU News

SMU Meadows joins ‘A Concert for Kindness’ to benefit rescue pets, Sunday, March 12, 2017

A Concert for Kindness benefit concert for Operation Kindness posterSMU artists will participate an evening of fine art to benefit shelter animals during the 2017 Concert for Kindness in Dallas City Performance Hall, 2520 Flora St., at 6 p.m. Sunday, March 12.

The annual fundraiser is organized by Artists for Animals co-founders Erin Hannigan (a faculty member in SMU’s Meadows School of the Arts and principal oboist with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra) and photographer Teresa Berg. The evening will include performances by members of the DSO, Avant Chamber Ballet and the Meadows School.

The event also features a silent art auction with works by area artists and students of Dallas’ Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. A wine and dessert reception is included in the ticket price.

All proceeds benefit Operation Kindness, North Texas’ oldest and largest no-kill shelter.

> Buy tickets online at artistsforanimals.com/buy-tickets

Wendy Davis to deliver Emmie V. Baine Lecture at 2017 SMU Women’s Symposium Wednesday, March 8

Wendy Davis, 2017 SMU Women's Symposium speakerWendy Davis, former Texas state senator and 2014 candidate for Texas governor, will deliver the keynote address in SMU’s 2017 Women’s Symposium Wednesday, March 8.

“We invited Wendy Davis to be our keynote speaker because she was a major advocate for women during her time in the Texas Senate and during her gubernatorial campaign,” said Aurora Havens, Women’s Symposium co-chair and a senior engineering major. “We believe she is an inspiration to all women, especially in Texas.”

The theme of the student-planned 2017 symposium, “My Body, Not Their Politics,” will focus on the politics surrounding issues such as sexual violence, reproductive justice, and women and politics.

“The theme addresses issues women face as well as the current political climate,” Havens says. Sachi Sarwal, a junior electrical engineering major, is also co-chair.

An attorney and long-time public servant, Davis served on the Fort Worth City Council from 1999 to 2008. She represented District 10 in the Texas Senate from 2009 to 2015, but made her mark nationally with an impassioned 11-hour filibuster in June 2013 that delayed passage of a bill restricting abortion regulations in Texas.  She ran for governor on the Democratic ticket in 2014, losing to Republican Greg Abbott.

In 2016, Davis launched a new initiative, Deeds Not Words, designed to train and equip young women to make changes in their communities.

More than 500 attendees are expected to attend SMU Women’s Symposium, created in 1966 as part of the University’s commemoration of its 50th anniversary. One of the longest running events of its kind, the symposium has challenged, changed and broadened women’s perspectives on campus and in the community.

The symposium is open to the public from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at Hughes-Trigg Student Center. Discounted registration is offered to SMU faculty, staff and students. Visit www.smu.edu/womsym for registration. Registration is requested by Wednesday, March 1, 2017.

— Nancy George

> Find more information and a complete schedule at the SMU Women’s Symposium homepage: smu.edu/womsym

Black History Month at SMU: February 2017

Black History Month collageSMU is celebrating Black History Month 2017 with a variety of programs and presentations.

Events include film screenings, panel discussions, professional networking and many other activities, including the traditional Black Excellence Ball on Saturday, Feb. 25, sponsored by the Black Alumni of SMU and the Association of Black Students.

The observance is coordinated by the Association of Black Students and SMU’s Office of Multicultural Student Affairs.

Visit SMU News for a complete calendar of events

> Contact SMU Multicultural Student Affairs for more information

Join faculty, staff, students and alumni for SMU Night at the Dallas Mavericks Monday, Feb. 13, 2017

SMU Night at the Dallas Mavericks, Feb. 13, 2017The Dallas Mavericks and FOX Sports Southwest welcome the University community to SMU Night on Monday, Feb. 13, 2017.

As part of the team’s College Spirit Nights, the Mavs are offering discounted tickets to their game against the Boston Celtics. The first 250 SMU students, alumni, faculty, staff, administrators and friends to buy a ticket package will also receive a special Mavericks caps featuring the Peruna logo.

Tickets start at $25 and are only available for purchase online. Get yours and find more information at mavs.com/collegespiritnights.

Load More Posts