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Christoph Sander, Consul General for the German Consulate General in Atlanta, Georgia, will be the keynote speaker at the sixth annual World Peace Symposium on Friday, September 20, at 1 p.m. in the Sansbury Campus Life Center Ballroom at the University of South Carolina Upstate.

The topic for this year’s event, hosted by USC Upstate and Rotary International and open to the public, centers on Europe and its receipt of the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize. When awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to the European Union (EU), the Norwegian Nobel Committee noted that the “union and its forerunners have for over six decades contributed to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe.” In addition to Sander, a panel of international students studying at USC Upstate will discuss issues of conflict in their home countries.

“Because the EU was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, we were looking for a representative from an EU country,” said Dr. Dirk Schlingmann, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at USC Upstate. “With German Consul General Christoph Sander, we are fortunate to have a keynote speaker of high stature who can speak well to this year’s topic, which is conflict resolution with a focus on Europe’s financial crisis and its toll on the Euro Zone member countries.”

Following the day’s events, a fifth Peace Pole will be planted in the Upstate Rotary International Peace Park on campus.

“Our annual World Peace Symposium is related to the UN’s International Day of Peace ( http://www.un.org/en/events/peaceday/ ) which is on September 21,” noted Schlingmann. “We want to promote peace. We want to bring awareness to the trade of resolving conflicts peacefully. Everybody needs to learn these skills. It is in the best interest of society and human kind.”

A testament to the focus of such an event, this year’s Peace Symposium is a collaboration of USC Upstate’s Chancellor’s Office, College of Arts and Sciences, and Center for International Studies, with the German-American Club of the Carolinas, Spartanburg County Scholars Academy, and the Office of Student Life.

Prior to becoming Consul General in Atlanta, Sander served as Deputy Head of Mission and Head of Economic Section at the German Embassy in, Venezuela, Pakistan, Hungary, and as Consul at the German Embassy in New Delhi, India. He has also worked as Head of Section for the European Single Market and Deputy Head of Transatlantic Relations at the German Foreign Office in Berlin.

For more information, contact Dr. Schlingmann or Nancy Callicott at 864-503-5700.

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