I was recently invited to the Facebook group ‘Millennium Student Initiative @ MyMSI.org‘, the first step of what looks to be a very promising attempt to unite area campuses and harness student activism on a wide scale.  Their mission?

Millennium Student Initiative (MSI) is a national student-led campaign that aims to increase global consciousness and citizenship among students by raising $1.5 million for a Millennium Village. Millennium Villages are the flagship initiative for Millennium Promise, an organization that aims to combine scientific and local knowledge to simultaneously combat a range of issues, including hunger, disease, inadequate education, the lack of safe drinking water and the absence of essential infrastructure — to assist communities on their way to sustainable self-development.

This seems like a very worthwhile endeavor for several reasons.  First, it was created and led entirely by Brandeisians, several of them good friends of mine.  I applaud my schoolmates for taking the initiative to lead such a far-reaching project, and they certainly deserve the support of the entire Brandeis community.  Also, their goal is long term economic development, creating the kind of change necessary not just to help poor people but to lift them out of poverty and to open new markets in the global economy.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, it represents a concerted effort to connect activists across campuses, a promising development that will set the groundwork for projects of even greater scale in the future if done correctly.  The idea of uniting students from different universities is one that has become very interesting to me.  It offers a level of participation and media attention for our causes that is impossible to achieve if we confine ourselves to the Brandeis campus.  Sahar and I have discussed several projects with the intent of furthering cross-campus political interaction, so there will hopefully be more to come when the school year starts.  Until then, it’d be great to hear any ideas people have in this direction.

A great first step would be to create a successful Millennium Student Initiative, so if you’re not one of the 500+ people who have joined on Facebook, I strongly encourage you to do so here.  For more information on the specific strategies MSI intends to employ, contact Kaamila Mohamed (kaamila@mymsi.org) or Daniel Acheampong (daniel@mymsi.org).  The group already has a fledgling website up, and I think we can expect to hear much more from them in the upcoming year.  Kudos for the strong start guys, and I look forward to helping.

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