Sculpture finalized for Global Faith in Action peace pole

A national movement that is asking for peace and unity has come to Wichita State and Shockers are able to take part in aiding their community.

Global Faith in Action, a student group that is dedicated to helping unify positive beliefs throughout individuals of different religions and backgrounds, is sponsoring a project to bring individuals together and call for peace.

Thursday, Global Faith in Action and WSU community members hosted a rally in the Shocker Hall lobby, announcing the Peace Pole at WSU and dedicating the project. The event also featured keynote speaker Gerald Durley, a member of the International Civil Rights Walk of Fame and a performance by the WSU Madrigals.

“When you look vertical, you will realize that we are all in this together,” said Durley to a crowd of students, faculty and outside community members. “Think about peace.”

Being constructed by the WSU Sculpture Guild, the pole at WSU is a part of a larger international project called the Peace Pole Project. Starting after the World War II bombing of Hiroshima, communities have come together to install poles in their area that proclaim “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in several languages.

“Contributing to the global discussion [of peace] is something that all of us enjoy,” said Kristen Tripp, WSU Sculpture Guild secretary. “Peace is a very important topic and I think that if we keep it alive even with a simple sculpture, it contributes to the discussion.”

Standing 14-feet tall, the Peace Pole is going to be made primarily of metal, concrete and custom-made oil clay, which the Sculpture Guild made in-house for the project.

The pole will be built around a metal sculpture that is designed to resemble a double-helix DNA structure, which the Sculpture Guild created in their metal fabrication shop via super-heated metal rods and a custom mold used to bend the metal.

Along with the symbolic figure, the Peace Pole is designed to be a part of a larger movement to bring peace to every group on campus by providing a place for individuals of all backgrounds to meet.

“WSU is diverse, but it won’t benefit if we stay disconnected,” said Chandler Williams, Global Faith in Action College coordinator. “Diversity makes us stronger.”

Along with introducing the Peace Pole to campus, Global Faith in Action hopes to continue to bring students together and become more involved in the WSU community through other efforts, such as their plan to create a future scholarship fund for students who have worked in interfaith missions and have shown a desire to bring interfaith strengths to their community.

The unveiling, installation and dedication of the pole will take place at 12 p.m. on Apr. 23 in the Shocker Hall courtyard. For any questions regarding the Peace Pole Project or Global Faith in Action, contact Williams at [email protected].