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FSU’s Leadership Studies Minor and Amnesty International Chapter to Host Leadership-in Residence Program

Frostburg State University will host a forum discussion titled “To Occupy or Not to Occupy? Leadership in the Labor Movement” on Monday, April 2, at 6 p.m. in Room 226 of the Compton Science Center. The forum, which is free and open to the public, will invite cross-generational perspectives and questions. An “Occupy Compton” networking reception will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the second floor atrium of Compton.

The forum is part of a leadership-in-residence program sponsored by the Leadership Studies Minor and the Amnesty International Chapter at FSU Monday and Tuesday, April 3. In addition to the forum, the program will feature leaders and scholars who will participate in a faculty workshop and classroom visits that will focus on the discussion of leadership and the labor movement.

The forum discussion will be initiated by five participants, including two representatives of organized labor, two FSU students and two FSU faculty members, and will offer an opportunity to learn about the history of leadership in the labor movement, as well as recent efforts, perceptions and implications of organized labor and the Occupy movement. Discussion will focus on how students can learn from and be part of the movements of their time. Stories and experiences from the Occupy movement, as well as examples of jobs within the field of organized labor, will also be shared.

The guest speakers, Jonna Huseman and Larry Williams, work within labor organizations and have experiences involving Occupy DC. Huseman, an advocate for workers' rights, spent three years as a communications specialist for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters. Williams, a seasoned employee of IBT’s Organizing Department, has led courses of more than 100 Teamster leaders and representatives from around the country at the IBT national organizing conference.

Student perspectives will be highlighted by FSU seniors Brett Shepherd and Jacob Hutton. Shepherd, a mass communication major and communication studies minor, is an active student leader who founded Independent and Third Party Students and organized the Frostburg: We Are The 99 Percent Facebook page. Hutton, vice president of FSU’s chapter of Amnesty International, is a history major with a concentration in international history and minors in sociology and cultural anthropology.

The forum will be rounded out with scholarly perspectives. Dr. Greg Wood, a History Department faculty member and member of the Leadership Studies Advisory Committee, will share his research on labor history, and Dr. Elesha L. Ruminski, chair of Communication Studies and coordinator of the Leadership Studies minor, will share her research on the gendered organizing rhetoric of the Teamsters and her family’s union perspective.

For information about this program, contact Ruminski at 301-687-4480 or

FSU is committed to making all of its programs, services and activities accessible to persons with disabilities. To request accommodations through the ADA Compliance Office, call 301-687-4102 or use a Voice Relay Operator at 1-800-735-2258. -end-

For further information on this release, contact:

Office of News and Media Services
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD  21532-2303

Telephone: 301-687-3171
Fax: 301-687-7589