Freedom talks

News agencies to discuss national values at PEP forum

Students of Ferris State University are given a chance to become more aware of their rights as American citizens and human beings.

A freedom of assembly/press panel discussion will take place to teach students the importance of the struggles America has to go through to maintain democracy and freedoms. The event is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. on Nov. 12 in BUS 111.

Political Science Professor Richard Griffin along with, representatives from the Pioneer, the Torch and TV 9 & 10 will be on the panel to discuss the importance of the freedom of assembly and press and the restrictions that go along with it.

“There are always restrictions,” Griffin said. “Even though we have those restrictions, some good and some bad, it’s also important for students to know that it’s not like that in the rest of the world.”

Political Engagement Project (PEP) holds events that encourage students to understand their importance in the political process.

“As an aspiring professional journalist, the freedom of the press is a core value that I have built my future career around,” senior political science major and Torch Editor-in-Chief Alex Wittman said.

Wittman will be representing the Torch on the panel.

“Even on a college campus, it’s vital that these values are embraced. The work we do at the Torch wouldn’t be possible without these.”

Pioneer Associate Editor Whitney Gronski-Buffa said the freedom of the press is important because it gives her an opportunity to advocate for every day citizens.

“It gives me a chance to shine a light on darker parts of society that need to be brought to the surface,” Gronski-Buffa said. “The role newspapers play in society is becoming more important everyday.”

Each semester PEP has a new theme. The fall 2013 theme is “The first amendment and your rights in the era of ‘Big Brother.’”

Aggiee Kiss, a speaker from Hungary who grew up under Soviet Union domination, will be at Ferris sharing her experience about all freedoms and how the Soviets wouldn’t allow them in Hungary.

Kiss will also hold a second presentation about contemporary life in Hungary.

Kiss’ presentations both relate to the first amendment and will take place at 7 p.m. on Nov. 25 and Dec. 3 in BUS 111.

All three of the events are free and open to all campus and community members.