Jemmie Tejada is a sophomore from Clark University, studying International Development and Political Science. Jemmie has been a passionate Israel advocate at Clark University, and is also a participant of the CAMERA Israel trip, a free 10 day trip to Israel for Israel advocates looking to learn how to better defend Israel on their college campuses. Meet and learn more about Jemmie below:
As a woman of color who was raised in one of the most vulnerable neighborhoods in the city of Boston, I grew up with a yearning passion for conflict resolution and global peace. This stemmed from consecutive nights of boisterous gunshots slicing through the air while my mother sprinted around the house to ensure my siblings and I were safe.
During my senior year in high school, a professor of conflict resolution at Boston University led a conference on the Arab-Israeli Conflict. Professor Carl Hobert hoped to educate urban high school students on the conflict while negotiating solutions. Instantly, I agreed to attend Carl Hobert’s conference and began to educate myself on the conflict. The idea of bringing peace to victims of war and despair through effective negotiations was of great importance to me. I quickly realized how difficult it was to appease the needs of all the external and internal parties involved. Members of my team agreed to the gathering of Israeli and Palestinian leaders for the creation of a two-state resolution that would end the conflict. Carl Hobert would introduce failed peace resolutions that were once agreed upon to challenge the group’s thinking.
During my first semester at Clark University, I took a course that briefly introduced the Arab-Israeli Conflict. In this course, I began to formulate my own political discourse and ideologies, as well as understand the discourse of those distinctively different from mine. This class taught me the vitality of being receptive and to question the knowledge and accuracy of all sources. It also taught me to separate my political views from acts against humanity. The Arab-Israeli Conflict is an issue that affects thousands of families on both sides of the fence. In other words, worrying about putting an end to the suffering of Palestinian and Israeli children is of greater importance than blaming either party for their offenses.
During the end of my first semester at Clark University, I was informed of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America and instantly contacted its members for better insight on their journalism trip to Israel. Being able to travel to Israel for the purpose of learning and better understanding Israel’s struggle with media coverage in the Middle East is key to me.
After being introduced to both sides of the conflict and finally finding a committee that specializes in disseminating accurate information, I am determined to join this committee in their cause to better inform people. I believe education and knowledge are the greatest contributors to global peace. Efficiently educating college students, government officials, and journalists in the United States promotes accuracy, integrity, and better clarity – which will hopefully help bring peace to the Middle East.