2016 Archives

"Triumph of the Spirit" nominations being accepted through April 1

SMU Embrey Human Rights Program to award $30,000 to human rights champions

March 21, 2016

DALLAS (SMU) – SMU’s Embrey Human Rights Program is accepting nominations for its 2016 Triumph of the Spirit Awards that will provide a $25,000 prize to a successful champion of human rights and social justice issues on a national or global scale, and $5,000 to a Dallas-area human rights defender.

The deadline to submit nominations is April 1, 2016. Winners will be announced July 1 and will be honored this fall. For more information on the unique honor, funded through an anonymous donor, visit http://www.smu.edu/triumph.

“The bi-annual Triumph of the Spirit Awards celebrate individuals who’ve devoted their lives in successful, meaningful ways to the defense and advocacy of human rights as enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,” says Embrey Human Rights Director Rick Halperin. “Recipients serve as beacons of hope in ongoing struggles for truth, justice and dignity.” 

Global winner of the inaugural 2014 Triumph of the Spirit Award was Peruvian champion of indigenous women’s rights Eliana Elias, co-founder/executive director of Minga Peru. Winner of the regional award was innovative educator Bhavani Parpia, founder/president of ConnecTeach

The first Triumph of the Spirit Awards celebration at SMU drew nearly 300 students and educators, community/government/business leaders, philanthropists, artists, activists and others who were treated to artistic performances, compelling stories of human rights work, and the premier of the Embrey Human Rights Program video.

SMU is the only university in the South and one of only seven in the nation to offer a Bachelor of Arts degree in human rights. Approved in 2011 by the SMU Board of Trustees, the degree was offered five years after SMU alumna Lauren Embrey, and her sister Gayle Embrey, helped fund the innovative program in SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences.

For more details about Triumph of the Spirit Awards or the Embrey Human Rights Program, contact EHRP Assistant Director Bradley Klein at 214-768-3241 or kleinb@smu.edu.

Southern Methodist University is a nationally ranked private university in Dallas founded 100 years ago. Today, SMU enrolls approximately 11,000 students who benefit from the academic opportunities and international reach of seven degree-granting schools.

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