UNITY — Unity College will host the annual PeaceJam Maine Slam, a one-day youth leadership conference for students and community leaders from across the Northeast, on Saturday, Oct. 17.

The purpose of the conference is to “inspire and equip youth to step up and actively engage in creating a future they can be proud of — a peaceful, just world, full of hope and opportunity,” according to the release from the college. Students can engage in presentations, workshops, service projects and family groups led by trained college mentors.

The PeaceJam Foundation provides five curricular programs that explore the stories of 13 Nobel Peace Laureates and the ways they overcame problems in their communities. Participants study the personal experiences of these world leaders, then engage in service learning activities that address local and global needs.

“We believe the inspiration of Nobel Peace Laureates, combined with the education and action components of PeaceJam programs, serve as a catalyst for a new generation of young leaders to commit to personal change, and become a force for change in their communities and the world,” said PeaceJam organizer Cathy Roberts, of Montville, in the release.

“The mission of the PeaceJam Foundation is to create young leaders committed to positive change in themselves, their communities and the world through the inspiration of Nobel Peace Laureates who pass on the spirit, skills, and wisdom they embody,” Roberts said in the release.

“It is with wide arms and open hearts that we welcome PeaceJam at Unity College,” Unity College Student Government Association John Karyczak said in the release. “In today’s great political and societal strife related to sustainability, we forget that the underlying values of change toward a sustainable future should not be centered on conflict and self-interest, but on peace and compassion for all living things. PeaceJam offers students the opportunity to open their minds and hearts to a peaceful way of being – one that is usually more productive.

“The students in grades 8-12 who will be a part of the 2015 PeaceJam Slam are sure to find themselves so inspired and motivated to change themselves and the world for good. Their momentum will be contagious,” Karyczak said.

Unity College President-elect Melik Peter Khoury will deliver a keynote address outlining his personal experiences with bystander intervention and offering tactics and responsibilities for students and educators.

“Unity College is dedicated to an atmosphere of inclusivity, diversity, free speech, and tolerance for all racial, ethnic, political, and intellectual beliefs and lifestyles. That’s why we’re delighted to host this event, to provide a forum where the highest ideals of the maintenance and renewal of civilization can take root and flourish in our next generation of environmental leaders,” Khoury said in the release.

The event is open to students in grades 8-12. Registration will cost $25 per person, with group rates available for groups of 10 or more.

Limited scholarships for students are available; call 589-3451 or email [email protected].

About Unity College

Unity College proudly celebrates its 50th year in 2015. The first institution of higher education in the nation to divest from fossil fuel investments, Unity is committed to educating the next generation of environmental professionals. Sustainability science lies at the heart of its educational mission, with 16 environmentally focused undergraduate majors. For more information, visit unity.edu.