One of South African Archbishop Desmond Tutu’s daughters will headline Winthrop University’s 38th annual Model United Nations conference this month.
Naomi Tutu will speak on global development on March 26 – one of many events scheduled on campus during Winthrop President Jamie Comstock’s inauguration.
Winthrop hosts its Model U.N. for high school students to compete and debate over three days. Students from South Carolina, North Carolina and Georgia will represent more than 60 nations during the model conference designed to replicate roles and responsibilities of countries involved with the international United Nations organization.
Naomi Tutu was born in South Africa and attended school in Swaziland, the United States and England. She grew up under Apartheid – the system of racial segregation that divided South Africa from 1948 to 1994 – and has led truth and reconciliation workshops for groups dealing with conflict. She has co-led “Building Bridges” workshops for communities dealing with racism problems.
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Her father, a retired Anglican archbishop who continues to work as a social rights activist, was a high-profile opponent of Apartheid who encouraged other nations to withhold investments in South Africa as a way of pressuring the minority-white government to abandon institutional segregation. The policy of disinvestment – and the huge anti-Apartheid rallies Tutu organized – are credited with ending the discriminatory practice.
Naomi Tutu is co-writing a book tentatively titled, “I Don’t Think of You as Black: Honest Conversations on Race and Racism.” She has served as a development consultant in West Africa and taught at the University of Hartford, the University of Connecticut and Brevard College in North Carolina.
She is scheduled to speak at 6:30 p.m. in Tillman Auditorium.
Winthrop’s Model U.N. conference was the first program of its kind to combine participation of college and high school students.