Dawson College marks 10 years since shooting tragedy

On September 13, Dawson College will mark the 10th anniversary of the shooting that took the life of first-semester student Anastasia De Sousa, injured 16 others, and traumatized an entire learning community. A remembrance ceremony will be held 11 a.m. in the Peace Garden on the college grounds, built as a living memorial to Anastasia and a testament to the courage and perseverance of those who were affected.

The ceremony will give pause for reflection and bring to light how Dawson College has been inspired to move forward, putting into action initiatives that embrace the ideals of peace and nonviolence. Joining in the ceremony will be the De Sousa family, survivors, and government representatives.

The Warren G. Flowers Art Gallery at Dawson, accessible through the de Maisonneuve entrance, will feature a display in Anastasia’s memory as well as panels of poigant messages that students, employees and other Montrealers wrote in the weeks that followed.

A week of other activities is planned leading up to the UN International Day of Peace ceremony September 21 at City Hall with Mayor Denis Coderre and in the evening awarding of the YMCA Peace Medals.

Dawson will host keynote speaker Dr. Samantha Nutt, founder of War Child Canada, Wednesday, September 14 at 7 p.m. in 5B.16.

On September 15 at 7 p.m., French philosopher and humanist Abdennour Bidar – an expert in Islamic culture – will present Réparer ensemble le tissu déchiré du monde, a theme from his book Les Tisserands, on repairing the damage caused by worldwide conflicts. Bidar came to global attention after the Charlie Hebdo shooting in Paris in January 2015 when he re-issued his Open Letter to the Muslim World. His presentation will be in French; translation will be available.

Both presentations are free and open to the public although tickets must be downloaded from the Dawson website. 

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