University students in North America are increasingly aware of the imbalance on campus concerning the presentation of Middle Eastern issues.
Some of these students have turned to the Middle East Forum, finding that in its journals, staff publications, media appearances, and Campus Watch project, it provides an alternate perspective, one looking at the region through the prism of national interests. Building on the MEF model, students at Brandeis and Yale universities have created campus-based clubs. These have the goal of creating a context where independent and rational thinking about the Middle East is encouraged, using the Middle East Quarterly and other MEF products to spur debate. The goal is to expand and broaden the dialogue and intellectual climate on issues pertaining to the Arab-Israeli conflict, Iraq, militant Islam, and U.S. policy through lectures, discussions, and other activities. As Denise Katz, president of MEF at Brandeis, has written:
A Middle East Forum voice on campus would present the Brandeis community with a very different and as of yet unheard perspective - namely a broader perspective - on these issues. An on-campus MEF Club would give students a unique opportunity to present these issues through the prism of America's national interests … this kind of approach to the matter has not been used on campus.
The Middle East Forum is prepared to assist students to form clubs at other universities by providing logistical advice, seed funding, materials, and speakers. Although the Forum will help in these ways, it does wish to stress that students themselves must take the initiative.
Media Coverage of MEF Clubs
For more information on establishing a student MEFClub, please contact Asaf Romirowsky at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEF Club Information and Contacts
MEF at Penn (MEFPenn)
MEF School of Advanced International Studies (MEFSAIS)
MEF at Yale (MEFYale)