Posted on: March 26, 2023 Posted by: Glacier Staff Comments: 0

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By Abigail Niedospial, JRN 111 Student

You may be lonely, but you’re not alone.

Loneliness is an experience common to Americans, especially those whose roots lie in other countries. That’s one of the reasons behind a panel discussion being held Tuesday in the library titled “Global Perspectives on American Loneliness.”

American loneliness has been a significant topic in recent months at Moraine Valley due to this year’s One Book One College selection: “Seek You: A Journey Through American Loneliness.” Tuesday’s event focuses on different ways people from around the world have been personally affected by this epidemic of loneliness. 

“I thought that it would be good to bring a global, international experienced perspective,” said event organizer Shanya Gray, a Moraine Valley counselor. “A perspective that, given our student demographics, many of our students can identify with.

“I wanted to have a panel that was real. A panel that just wasn’t us as professors talking about our knowledge or research. I wanted a panel where we could share our lived experiences, that students could identify with and ultimately know that they are not alone.”

In addition to Gray, the panel will feature Moraine Valley psychology professor Nickolas Shizas and addiction studies professor Anni Rasmussen.

This year’s One Book One College selection is “Seek You.” 

Each of the panel members is either a first-generation American or an immigrant themselves, and they will aim to discuss their experiences regarding loneliness, comparing and contrasting the U.S. to their countries of origin and how loneliness contributed throughout their lives. 

The panel will conclude by providing present-day solutions to what “Seek You” author Kristen Radtke dubs a “silent epidemic in America” and how we can individually and communally address it.

This event takes place from 11 a.m. to noon in the Library Lounge in the L Building. It is free, but those who plan to attend should register here. The event is also being live-streamed here.