'Tunnel of Oppression' program set for Nov. 7-8

| Judy Berthiaume

UW-Eau Claire will host its “Tunnel of Oppression” program from 6-9 p.m. Nov. 7-8 in David Karlgaard Hall (formerly known as Towers North) on upper campus.

Tours will run every 30 minutes and last two hours. Participants can check in near the elevators in Towers North.

This year’s theme is “The Dangers of Neutrality.”

“Our goal is to open people’s minds and promote understanding and respect for all people of all identities,” says Sophie Maksymkiw, a member of Peer Diversity Educators, the student organization that organizes the event. “We want people to leave feeling educated, and motivated to learn more, willingly, by doing their own research.”

During this year’s “Tunnel of Oppression” event, small groups will travel through four different rooms, including an active room about autism, an active room about indigenous identities, a passive room about transgender rights and another passive room about toxic masculinity.

“This is a great opportunity to learn about topics that aren't often discussed or spoken about openly,” says Maksymkiw, a sophomore biology major from White Bear Lake, Minnesota.

The experiential program helps to raise awareness about important issues in a safe, inclusive and simulated environment.

“We hope people come to learn and challenge themselves, become aware of important issues and start to understand different perspectives,” Maksymkiw says.

Peer Diversity Educators is a Housing and Residence Life student-run organization that helps to promote understanding and respect for people of all abilities, creeds, races, social classes, genders in both identities and expressions, and sexual orientations.

Through educational programs in residence halls and classrooms, the student Peer Diversity Educators try to open people's minds in the hope of eliminating prejudice and discrimination.

The organization includes students from a variety of academic backgrounds.

For more information about the “Tunnel of Oppression” event, contact Sophie Maksymkiw at maksymsm4871@uwec.edu.