Rollins College

Rollins Holds Conference on Being a Good Neighbor in Today?s Multicultural Society

February 17, 2009

Media Contact: Stephanie Page Duesing, 407-646-2203

The “Good Neighbor Conference” is a two-day event that pays homage to the values held by Fred Rogers. Rogers graduated from Rollins in 1951 and is the College’s most famous alumnus. Known for creating and producing Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, Rogers spent his life helping people appreciate what it means to be a caring neighbor.

A public lecture and numerous workshops will explore the ideals of Rogers’ life's work and how to continue those values in today's ever-changing, multicultural society. The conference is presented by the Rollins College Child Development & Student Research Center. This is the second year Rollins has held this conference.

This year's theme “Being a Good Neighbor in Today’s Multicultural Society” encourages participants to ask the question, “What would Fred do?” and explore what it means to be a good neighbor.

Public Lecture by Illustrator and Painter James Ransome
Friday, Feb. 20 at 7 p.m.
SunTrust Auditorium, Crummer Hall

This Friday, Feb. 20 at 7 p.m., Rollins welcomes a special visitor to its neighborhood, award-winning illustrator and painter James Ransome will be on campus for a public talk. Ransome is a recipient of the Coretta Scott King Honor Award for his illustrations of Uncle Jed's Barbershop, which was selected as an ALA Notable Book and is currently being shown as a feature on Reading Rainbow. After the lecture, Ransome will be available for a book signing, and books will be available for purchase. This lecture is free and open to the public. 

Conference Workshops
Saturday, Feb. 21 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Bush Science Center

Ransome will speak again the morning of Saturday, Feb. 21 to kick off a series of workshops. The cost of attending the conference is $15 and includes a boxed lunch. Sessions such as “Cultures and Customs of Faith in America,” “The Melting Pot Meltdown: Exploring the Dynamisms of Cultural Gumbo,” “Teaching Tolerance,” “Don’t Laugh at Me,” “Be the Change” and “Do You Know Your Neighbors?” will be taught by Rollins professors, community leaders and educators.

A variety of community organizations including Central Florida Jobs With Justice, Ten Thousand Villages, Destiny Foundation of Central Florida, Winter Park Neighborhood Center for Families, Islamic Center of Central Florida and the Farm Workers Association among others will be on hand with resources, information and items for sale.

Sweater Drive

February 19 – 27
Drop-off locations around the Rollins College campus

Fred Rogers’ cardigan sweater came to represent the gentle spirit and warmth of the man himself. To celebrate the legacy of Fred Rogers and to promote the “Good Neighbor Conference,” Rollins is collecting sweaters that will be donated to the Orlando Rescue Mission. New and gently used sweaters can be dropped off at various locations on the Rollins College campus.

Rollins College
1000 Holt Ave.
Winter Park, FL 32789
Visitor parking is available in the SunTrust Plaza Parking Garage.

For more information about the “Good Neighbor Conference," contact Vicki Long at or 407-646-2227.


©2009 Rollins College, 1000 Holt Ave., Winter Park, FL 32789  407.646.2000