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Panel discussion on African issues planned for March 26

ISSUED: 19 March 2015
MEDIA CONTACT: Valerie Owens

SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV — A panel discussion at Shepherd University will focus on contemporary issues in various African regions. The event, titled “Africa: Trade and Human Development,” will take place Thursday, March 26 at 3:30 p.m. in the Robert C. Byrd Center for Legislative Studies auditorium.

The panel will include Kaitlyn Coffey and Natalie Wazir, both from the U.S. Department of State, and Franklin Moore, a former deputy assistant administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Africa Bureau.

Shepherd’s Department of Political Science, Pi Sigma Alpha political science association, and Model United Nations are sponsoring the event, which will cover topics such as countering the threat of the Ebola virus, enhancing water quality, strengthening intra-Africa trade through investment and infrastructure development, and preventing the rise of terrorist organizations.

“One goal of the event is to raise awareness of important contemporary issues in different African regions,” said Dr. Joe Robbins, assistant professor of political science. “And to look at how international organizations play a role in addressing these concerns.”

The event is free and open to the public. For more information contact Robbins at, or Dr. Aart Holtslag, assistant professor of political science, at

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