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APSU students invite community to bring down ‘the wall'

March 18, 2003

A great celebration occurred when the wall separating West Berlin from East Berlin was torn down in 1989. The symbolic significance of that event echoed across Europe and around the globe.

In a similar effort, Austin Peays Student Government Association and Office of Student Affairs have initiated a project to tear down the walls that separate people because of hateful and hurtful comments based on discrimination.
March 18, 2003

A great celebration occurred when the wall separating West Berlin from East Berlin was torn down in 1989. The symbolic significance of that event echoed across Europe and around the globe.

In a similar effort, Austin Peay's Student Government Association and Office of Student Affairs have initiated a project to tear down the walls that separate people because of hateful and hurtful comments based on discrimination.

The upcoming Writing on the Wall Project at APSU is designed to create a visual dramatization of a mental and spiritual action on the part of all participants.

According to senior James Mott of Knoxville, program chair for SGA, the first step of the Writing on the Wall Project is to build a physical wall to represent “the terrible things we say and do or that have been said or done to us that cause hurt because they are based on discrimination of any kindreligious, racial, gender, ethnic or sexual orientation.”

From March 20 through April 1, members of the University community are invited to write such words and phrases on 400 cinder blocks, which will be provided. APSU students will use the blocks to build a 10-feet-high, 35-feet-long wall on the plaza of the University Center.

The second step of the project, according to Mott, is slated for noon, Friday, April 4, when everyone is invited to participate in leveling the wall. Preceding the destruction of the wall, a free picnic on the plaza at 11 a.m. will be provided to participants.

“In breaking down the wallliterally, we hope to begin breaking down the unseen walls between people and groups of people,” Mott said. “Our ultimate goal is to begin destroying any discrimination and hate on the campus and within the local community.”

In commending the SGA for initiating the event, Dr. Sherry Hoppe, APSU president, said, “Many people talk about prejudices and barriers, but few take positive action.

“Even though symbolic, tearing down the wall reminds usin a very visible waythat we can work together regardless of our differences.”

For more information about the Writing on the Wall Project or to provide specific words you want to have added to the wall, telephone the SGA Office at 7262.