Join us for Welcome Week: College Edition
September 12-16, 2022

Mobilizing University Resources for Welcome: How to Make Your Campus a Resettlement Campus

Monday, Sept. 12th | View Here

How can colleges and universities mobilize their resources in innovative ways to both welcome refugees and provide valuable learning experiences for students? In this webinar, Every Campus A Refuge (ECAR) will provide an overview of how to establish a “Resettlement Campus” – i.e. a higher education institution that provides refugees with temporary housing and community integration support through transformative curricular and co-curricular efforts.

You'll learn about refugee resettlement, why college and university campuses are uniquely positioned to support refugee integration, and how to effectively mobilize campus and community resources to do so. Speakers will include faculty, staff, and students engaged in the work of hosting refugees on campus grounds and supporting them in their resettlement.


  • Diya Abdo, Ph.D, Professor of English at Guilford College, Founder and Director of Every Campus a Refuge
  • Kathleen Herbst, Every Campus a Refuge Guilford College Program Coordinator
  • Anisgul Stanikzai, ECAR student volunteer

Global Migration in Our Era of Climate Change

Tuesday, Sept. 13th | View Here

In an era where one person out of every 88 has been forced to flee their homes, the growing climate change crisis has proven to be a particularly harsh stressor. How can we bring together knowledge surrounding this current wave of refuge and move to assist those in need?

In this webinar, you’ll learn how global migration and displacement interact with the growing climate change crisis, as well as what attendees can do to help! Speakers will explore the causes of migration, from global conflict to loss of political freedoms to the ways that global warming directly impacts the need to take refuge. Learning about ways to help advocate for improvements to refugee policy is just one of many takeaways you’ll gain to help resettlement efforts in your community!


  • Gregory White, Ph.D, Mary Huggins Gamble Professor of Government, Smith College
  • Andrew Fuys, Senior Director of Global Migration, CWS
  • Sylvia Nyamuhungu, Michigan Refugee Community Organizer, CWS

Welcoming and the Arts

Wednesday, Sept. 14th | View Here

Art is an essential tool for sustaining and strengthening welcoming work. Join Welcoming America for a discussion on exploring how arts can transform, deepen, and enrich immigrant inclusion work.


  • Daniel Valdez, Welcoming America
  • Alex Manuel, Students Rebuild
  • Michael Johnson, Arts Midwest

Forced Migration from Ukraine; an Overview

Thursday, Sept. 15th | View Here

Though the Russian invasion of Ukraine began months ago, the refugee crisis within the country is ongoing — over 7.5 million Ukrainians have sought refuge outside their country alongside those already displaced within. What can college students do to help those in need?

Join us to understand the relationship between armed conflict and migration, the context of the crisis in Ukraine, and how resettlement is progressing. In addition, speakers will provide an overview of the acute challenges facing non-Ukrainian refugees within the country, and the many internally-displaced individuals who remain within Ukraine. CWS will also present ways that college students can become involved and help to create a more welcoming experience for Ukrainian and all refugees.


  • Ernesto Castañeda, Director Immigration Lab, American University
  • Victoria Juharyan, visiting Assistant Professor, UC Davis
  • Pauline Eluère Communications Officer for UNHCR
  • Yelena Litvinov, co-founder - STROIKA, Inc.

Domestic Policy and Unaccompanied Minors at the Border

Friday, Sept. 16th | View Here

While the situation at the United States border may seem distant to those witnessing its events across the country, there are many ways in which we can all deepen our understanding and provide support from afar. In this webinar, we will discuss how the border is reflective of the ways in which not only foreign policy, but also domestic policy affects resettlement efforts. You will be provided an overview of the contributing factors to the U.S. border situation, including the reasons unaccompanied minors seek asylum and an explanation for the statistics behind this wave of migration. Speakers will discuss the historical stigma associated with the way we think of the border crisis, and conclude with an explanation of how attendees far removed from the border can help.


  • Douglas S. Massey, Henry G. Bryant Professor of Sociology and Public Affairs, Princeton University
  • Cassie Stewart, Executive Director, Rio Valley Relief Project
  • Sebastian Vidal, Community Engagement Associate, Children Services at CWS

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Welcome Week 2021 sessions

Day 1: Global Migration and Displacement


Join us to hear from Georgetown University and University of Michigan professors as they discuss global migration and displacement. In this session, Professor Sarah Miller will explore the causes of migration and discuss climate change, global conflict, violence, and loss of political freedoms as an impetus for those seeking refuge. Professor Melissa Borja will discuss the historical context behind forced migration and the ways in which the demographics of refugees have changed over the past half century.


  • Dr. Sarah Miller, Georgetown University Adjunct Professor
  • Dr. Melissa Borja, University of Michigan Professor

Day 2: Refugee Resettlement in the United States: History, Statistics and Program Overview


Join us to discuss the history of refugee resettlement specifically in the context of the US. We will explore how resettlement has changed over the years, what sort of government processes exist for resettlement, how the US process compares to other countries' processes, and what is the role of the resettlement NGO and different agencies in the US for those seeking refuge. We will introduce the efforts of major agencies in the US with a specific focus on CWS's work in resettlement. Finally, attend to hear the stories of resilience from current college student refugees who resettled in the US during their high school years. Participants will learn the challenges young newcomers face when they resettle in a new country, and how our panelists have overcome these challenges.


  • Kate Macom, Senior Director of Resettlement, CWS
  • Dr. Elizabeth Ferris, Georgetown University Professor
  • Cynthia Bukirwa, former refugee and current student at Dayton University
  • Tiba Al-Khafaji, former refugee and current student at the University of Texas at Austin

Day 3: The U.S. Border: Asylum and Unaccompanied Children


Attend this webinar to hear about the current situation on the US/Mexico border. We will discuss asylum seekers and unaccompanied children at the border, including demographics, statuses, and reasons for seeking asylum. We will also explore some of the US agencies and NGOs at the border and end with a discussion of CWS's work at the border with both asylum seekers and unaccompanied children.


  • Dr. Yael Schacher, Senior U.S. Advocate at Refugees International
  • Christine Lemonda, Director of Children's Services at CWS
  • Marielle Septen, CWS Border Shelter Network Coordinator

Day 4: Afghan SIVs and Allies


CWS has been welcoming Afghan refugees and Special Immigrant Visa holders since 2009 and will continue to welcome our Afghan allies and their families in communities across the United States as individuals are evacuated from Afghanistan. Join this webinar to learn more about the current situation in the evacuation of Afghan SIVs and how we as Americans are working together to welcome our Allies. We will provide an update on the current needs of Afghan SIVs, how supporters can meet those needs and how to advocate on behalf of Afghans.


  • Staff from Church World Service's New York headquarters

Day 5: Role of the Community and College Students in Welcoming Newcomers


Join us to hear about current efforts participants can take to welcome newcomers. Learners will hear from Princeton University's community effort for refugees with their Religion and Resettlement Project and how religion and interfaith identity can play a role in the resettlement process. Listeners will also hear form Every Campus a Refuge and learn how your college campus can be involved in this important work of welcome. Participants will gain an understanding of community sponsorship programs and how community members can support CWS. Finally, we will close with a brief discussion of the next steps that learners can take after this educational week.


  • Dr. Katherine Clifton, Princeton University staff
  • Dr. Todd Scribner, USCCB member
  • Dr. Diya Abdo, Guilford College Professor and Founder and Director of Every Campus a Refuge
  • Christine Baer, CWS Faith Community Organizer
  • Elissa Diaz, CWS Policy and Advocacy Manager
  • Allie Matthias, CWS intern and student at Princeton University



Photos on this page (top to bottom): Shane Nelson Photo | CWS | Shane Nelson Photo | Sean Hawkey | Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images | Paul Jeffrey