“From Skaramagas Dock,” an op-ed by Anthony Cozart (MPP ’18), was published on October 30 by The Michigan Daily and will be published in the Daily's print edition, The Statement, on Tuesday, November 14. The piece recounts Cozart’s experience in Greece, where he researched the refugee situation with colleagues during the Ford School’s annual International Economic Development Program (IEDP) trip.
Cozart visited Greece’s largest refugee camp at Skaramagas Dock, where he saw a startling image: shipping containers full of goods, ready to be shipped all over the world, contrasted with shipping containers converted into homes, where refugees were stuck hoping for resettlement in northern Europe.
Cozart, who has a background in economics, says it made him question the ability of traditional economic and policy lenses to “persuade the public of the benefits of immigration and of welcoming refugees.” He took inspiration, though, from a “noneconomic solution” practiced by the Melissa Network, a community organization in Athens that offers classes and counseling for migrant women.
“Instead of weighing the costs and benefits of serving those who have just joined their community, the Melissa Network welcomes them,” Cozart writes.
Students and faculty who had met with Dr. Nadina Christopoulou, co-founder of the Melissa Network, encouraged the Ford School to connect with her. This fall, Christopoulou traveled to Michigan to present the 2017 Josh Rosenthal Education Fund Lecture. Watch a video of her talk, "The depth of our divisions, the breadth of our communities," here.
For more on the Ford School's IEDP Greece trip, read:
- "Ford School IEDP students travel to Greece to research economic, refugee policies," by Anthony Cozart (MPP '18) and Jacqueline Mullen (MPP '18)
- The Ford School's IEDP overview and the IEDP Greece blog, created and maintained by students, throughout their trip