Global Affairs

As an international school with students from over 100 countries, Pearson College emphasizes the importance of media literacy, particularly on issues of global impact. This is formally realized through the Global Affairs program at the College, when approximately once every two weeks, the community gathers to hear speakers (guests, faculty and students) and explore international issues. Past topics and speakers in the past five school calendar years included:



APRIL 29, 2014
"The Role of Canada in the World," presented by Andrew Cohen, award-winning Canadian journalist, author of Lester B. Pearson from the Extraordinary Canadians series, and professor of journalism at Carleton University's School of Journalism and Norman Paterson School of International Affairs 

APRIL 8, 2014
"Women's education, changing the destiny of a Nation," Atsikana Pa Ulendo (Girls On The Move) Secondary School co-founders Memory Mdyetseni and Christie Johnson (Current Pearson College Houseparent), will be sharing the journey that they have been on to bring high quality education to impoverished and vulnerable girls in rural Malawi. Founded in 2008, Atsikana Pa Ulendo has gained nation-wide attention for the astonishingly high results their students are consistently achieving on their national exams. In just five years, what began as a pile of bricks on donated land, has grown into a full secondary school with 24 teachers, 360 students, and a campus that includes running water, electricity, 15 buildings, a large garden and an extensive tree nursery. Since opening in 2008, 240 girls have graduated from APU's four year program, with many APU graduates going on to become primary school teachers, small business owners, and university and college students. As educators, Christie and Memory believe that education is the key to giving girls a choice in the lives that they lead. It gives them a voice to share their dreams with their communities. It is their voice that will give them the power they need to transform their lives and the lives of their future families. Photos can be seen here.

MARCH 18, 2014
"Building a Better World," presented by Eric Rajah, co-founder of A Better World Canada, an Alberta based, volunteer-run, international aid organization

FEBRUARY 18, 2014
"Bread and Circuses: The Olympic Industry," presented by Elliot, PC YR 40 and Vlad, PC YR 40 

FEBRUARY 4, 2014
"Ideology Today: Liberation, equality, capital," presented by Albert, PC YR 39 

JANUARY 14, 2014
"Beyond the Shadow of the Residential School: Understanding the On-reserve Day School in the History of Indigenous Education," presented by Prof. Helen Raptis, Associate Professor, University of Victoria

DECEMBER 3, 2013
"Learning beyond the classrooms, beyond borders" presented by Geoffrey Tindyebwa, Dickens, PC YR 39, Gerold, PC YR 39, Taya, PC YR 39, Tom, PC YR 39 and Woolode PC YR 39

NOVEMBER 19, 2013
"Women's stories from the Middle East," presented by Hoda, PC YR 39, Sawsan, PC YR 40, Grace, PC YR 39 and Mariam, PC YR 40

NOVEMBER 5, 2013
"Climate change, from science to politics" presented by Dr. Andrew Weaver, climate scientist, Deputy Leader of the Green Party of British Columbia, and a member of the British Columbia Legislative Assembly representing the riding of Oak Bay-Gordon Head

OCTOBER 8, 2013
"Small things I'd rather not know: a provocative presentation/community discussion about ethical/unethical practicesand Corporate Social Responsability" presented by Alice, PC YR 39, Connor, PC YR 40, Steph, PC YR 39

SEPTEMBER 24, 2013
"What is in our Staff" presented by Dr. Eileen van der Flier-Keller, Earth and Ocean Sciences at the University of Victoria

SEPTEMBER 10, 2013
"Why are we here: a community discussion about our future and a sustainable future"


The three overarching topics for international affairs this year are:

  • Racism and discrimination
  • Sustainability
  • International Development 

APRIL 23, 2013
"The Arab Revolution: New Media, Asymmetrical Conflict and a New Generation, presented by Karim El Mantawi, Visiting Professor- Media, Peace and Conflict Studies at University for Peace

MARCH 26, 2013
"Governance and Security" presented by Hon. Roy Cullen, P.C., C.A., a former member of the Canadian Parliament

MARCH 12, 2013
"Climate Wars"presented by Gwynne Dyer an independent Canadian journalist, syndicated columnist and historian

JANUARY 8, 2013
"International Development and Human Development" presented by Sir John Daniel, incoming Chair of UWC's International Board

NOVEMBER 27, 2012
"The many faces of racism and why it is so difficult to eradicate" presented by Professor Rennie Warburton, Department of Sociology, University of Victoria

NOVEMBER 13, 2012
"A Science for Conserving Carnivores: Three critical tools for any conservationist's toolkit" presented by Darron Collins, PhD, President of College of the Atlantic and former Director of Creative Assets at the World Wildlife Foundation

OCTOBER 30, 2012
"World tensions: A discussion about the role of the UWC for a more peaceful and sustainable future" by David Hawley, College Director

OCTOBER 2, 2012
"Inclusion and Belonging: from racism and discrimination to solutions" presented by Meharonna Ghani

SEPTEMBER 18, 2012
"Islam and the West" presented by Nik PC YR 38


MAY 1, 2012
"America on the Threshold," presented by Derek, PC YR 37

APRIL 17, 2012
"The Nile: Source of Life, Source of Conflict," presented by Ujamaa, PC YR 37, and Mohamed, PC YR 38

APRIL 3, 2012
"What role does public patience play in a post revolutionary period in the process of leading a country from a people's revolution to people's development ," presented by Abhinav, PC YR 37

MARCH 6, 2012
"Forests and Carbon: Positive Feedback to Climate Change or Opportunities for Climate Change Mitigation" presented by Dr. Werner Kurz  (Senior Research Scientist, Global Change and Landscape Ecology, Natural Resources Canada, Canadian Forest Service)

FEBRUARY 14, 2012
"The History and Political Crisis in Yemen" presented by Esmail, PC YR 37 and Mohammed, PC YR 36

JANUARY 31, 2012
"The Tibet Question:Relations between Tibet and China from 1950 to Present" presented by Liz, PC YR 37 and Larissa, PC YR 37

JANUARY 10, 2012
"Social Justice and Indigenous Peoples" presented by Robert Janes, PC YR 9, Lawyer with JFK Law Corporation

NOVEMBER 22, 2011
"What do you do when all the odds are against you? How the Pearson experience helped a student create a radical response to conflict in Palestine" presented by Mujahed Sarsour, PC YR 33

NOVEMBER 8, 2011
"Is Foreign Aid the Best Way to Help Countries in Need?," presented by Farabee, PC YR 37, Yukiko, PC YR 37, Niklas, PC YR 37, Shani, PC YR 37, AJ, PC YR 37 and Ramiro, PC YR 37

OCTOBER 18, 2011
"Igniting a Revolution: Justifying violence in defense of the earth," presented by Joe, PC YR 37

OCTOBER 4, 2011
"The Immigration Crisis in Europe," presented by Danielle, PC YR 37 and Skage, PC YR 37

SEPTEMBER 20, 2011
"Governing Systemic Risk and Exceptional Crises: Japan's Policy Response to the March 2011 Disaster" presented by Dr. Yves Tiberghien, Associate Professor of Policitcal Science at the University of British Columbia

"Ethics in World Politics," presented by Dr Richard Price, Professor of Political Science at the University of British Columbia


APRIL 13, 2011
"A defense of Japanese Whaling," presented by Kakuho, PC YR 36

APRIL 6, 2011
"Red Cross - Humanitarian Partner," presented by Kimberley Nemrava, PC YR 1, Director BC & Yukon at the Canadian Red Cross Society 

MARCH 24, 2011
"Global Challenges and Research Applications: Some Marine Examples," presented by Dr. Philip Dearden, Professor and Chair, Department of Geography, University of Victoria

MARCH 9, 2011
"Community-based water resources for the world's most underserved," presented by Camille Dow Baker, President & CEO, CAWST (Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology)

FEB. 9, 2011
"Globalization Up Close and Personal," presented by Nick Etheridge, Associate at Centre for Asia-Pacific Initiatives at UVic , formerly of the Government of Canada Department of Foreign Affairs and Diplomatic Trade

JAN. 26, 2011
"The Implications of Global Power Shift for Liberal Internationalism (and UWC)," presented by Dr. Yuen Pau Woo, PC YR 6, President and CEO, Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada 

JAN. 12, 2011
"Planting Oil: Has a globalized oil market brought any benefits to the Venezuelan society?" presented by Jose, PC YR 36

DEC. 1, 2010
"Potholes on the Road to Perdition: A History of the Palestinian Israeli Conflict," presented by Dr. Martin Bunton, Professor, Department of History, University of Victoria

NOV. 17, 2011
"Conflict Diamonds and Human Security." Presented by Dr. Philippe Le Billon, Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia with the Department of Geography and the Liu Institute for Global Issues

NOV. 3, 2010
"Power and Justice: Human Rights in Spain—the case of Baltasar Garzon," presented by Horacio, PC YR 36

OCT. 13, 2010
"The Effect of the Internet: What has been the role of major internet companies? What is Facebook really up to?" presented by Marissa and Hector, PC YR 36

SEP. 22, 2010
"Truth in Media," presented by Peter McKnight, columnist, Vancouver Sun

SEP. 8, 2010
"The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Media portrayals of the marginalized groups in our community," presented by Jody Paterson, journalist, Victoria Times Colonist


APRIL 14, 2010
"Europe: The Rise of the Other: A dissection of Europe's immigration situation with a discussion on the political, cultural, social and economic implications of this phenomenon," presented by Lorenzo and Emma, PC YR 35

MARCH 23, 2010
"Will China Rule the World by 2010? The Rise of China, the Dilemma of Hegemonic Transition, and the Future Peace of the World," presented by Dr. Yves Tiberghien, Associate Professor of Political Science, University of British Columbia

MARCH 5, 2010
"Can the United Nations Keep the Peace?" presented by Dr. Abiodun Williams, PC YR 4, Vice President, Center for Conflict Analysis and Prevention, United States Institute for Peace

FEB. 17, 2010
"Making it Visible: A panel-led discussion about discrimination based on gender and sexual orientation," presented by Colleen (Faculty), Alan and Alistair, PC YR 35

JAN. 27, 2010
"The Iron Curtain: The Story of the Wall that Divided the World," presented by Vojtech, PC YR 35

JAN. 13, 2010
"Global Warming: The Scale of the Problem and the Path to the Solution," presented by Dr. Andrew Weaver, Professor, School of Earth and Ocean Sciences, University of Victoria

DEC. 2, 2009
"Eco-terrorism: A Debate," presented by Julia, PC YR 35, Esther, Francis, Adam, Yannick, and Alex, PC YR 36

NOV. 16, 2009
"Sealing a Deal for Copenhagen and what it means for UWCs," presented by Brett House, PC YR 15, Senior Economist with the Earth Institute at Columbia University

NOV. 4, 2009
"Indigenous Issues in the Pacific Region: Attempts at assimilation and movement to self-government," presented by Tulawe, PC YR 35, Elly, Amber and Nile, PC YR 36

OCT. 14, 2009
"Le' Wech' Vlew' Xa'. Indigenous Issues in Latin America: from Colonization to Current Issues," presented by Salome, Maria Luisa, Jen and Nanu, PC YR 35

SEP. 23, 2009
"The Social Determinants of Health and British Columbia's First Nations," presented by Dr. Evan Adams, PC YR 9, Aboriginal Health Physician Advisor, BC Ministry of Health and Actor

SEP. 9, 2009
"Changing the World: What Works," presented by Dr. Mary Wynne-Ashford, Past Co-President, International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War, Victoria, Canada