Peace Jam strives for world peace

Michael Bragg

Peace Jam, a nationwide organization committed to being a promoter of peace, has established a chapter at the university.

Junior technical photography major Kathryn Ray, along with high school friends and Appalachian students — Chris Dinof, Jack Bishop, Brennan Longdale, Allie Wallace and Alex Medford — decided to form the chapter after being involved with the organization throughout high school.

Ray, who is president of the campus Peace Jam chapter, decided to establish the chapter after realizing the poverty in Boone.

“Our main focus this year is on extreme poverty in Boone,” Ray said. “All of the founding members went to Tuscola High School together in Waynesville, N.C. and enjoyed it there, so we thought we would bring it to App.”

Junior history major and Peace Jam Treasurer Allie Wallace was involved in the high school chapter.

“We are all so dedicated to this club,” Wallace said. “We want to make any type of impact possible, whether it be community or a larger picture.”

Peace Jam is unfunded and relies on fundraisers for funds.

“We don’t really have any money right now to do anything substantial,” Ray said. “We have only been meeting since the start of the year, so there has not been much time to get the ball rolling.”

Junior elementary education major and Secretary Alex Medford is hopeful that as soon as there is a steady amount of funding and larger group of members, Peace Jam will take off and make an impact in Boone.

“All of us are closely knit as a group because we’ve been doing it since high school, and we were successful doing it at Tuscola, and I believe that we are going to do good things in Boone during the school year,” Medford said.

Peace Jam’s greatest task is getting their name out on campus.

“We need to establish ourselves as a group and community, so right now we are mainly talking about means to action,” Ray said. “We are trying to partner up with other local businesses and organizations that do the same thing as us, and we’re going to go from there.”

With school already being an overbearance on the workload, the founders and chair holders find no problem with the extra work involved in making Peace Jam a success.

“I am very dedicated to the cause,” Wallace said. “As long as we are focused and keep spirits up, I think we’ll be on the right path.”

Meetings are held every other Monday at 7 p.m. in I.G. Greer Hall room 119 and new members are welcome to participate in conversation.

Story: WILL GREENE, A&E Reporter