Paul C. Forage
The Forage Center for Peacebuilding and Humanitarian Education is named in honor of Dr. Paul C. Forage, who passed away on September 8, 2015.
Dr. Forage was a dedicated academic, scholar, and practitioner who believed strongly that only through experience-based learning could those deployed to work in conflict-prone environments be effective in their mission to alleviate suffering and build peace.
In 2000, while at Florida Atlantic University, he established FTX Atlantic Hope, a multiday full-immersion simulation training for students working in conflict- and disaster-impacted environments. For the next 15 years, the simulation was offered annually, first at Florida Atlantic University, and then at Indian River State College. In addition, starting in 2007 Dr. Forage, working with the Defense Ministry of the Republic of Macedonia, offered FTX Svetlina, a two-week training program in Macedonia that brought together both U.S. and Macedonian students. In the course of developing and directing these programs, he developed a body of work that articulated best practices for advancing humanitarian and peacebuilding work. Over 500 students have benefited from his work, and many have gone on to work in conflict zones around the world. In addition, he assembled a community of professionals dedicated to advancing humanitarian and peacebuilding education.
Born in Toronto, Canada, he received his B.A. with distinction in Chinese studies, followed by an M.S. in East Asian studies and Ph.D. in Chinese history and language from the University of Toronto. He served on the faculty at the University of Michigan, and then went on to teach and research at Florida Atlantic University and Indian River State College. He co-founded the peace studies program at Florida Atlantic University and directed the emergency management program at Indian River State College. During his time at the University of Michigan, he served in the Canadian Army Reserve Forces with the Essex and Kent Scottish Regiment. Dr. Forage also directed Community Emergency Response Team programs in St. Lucie and Martin counties in Florida. For his work, he received grants from the U.S. Institute of Peace, Florida Division of Emergency Management, and Florida Association of Community Colleges.
Paul Forage was a true renaissance person, with interests in disaster management, terrorism, humanitarian assistance, peacebuilding, and Chinese history. He was fluent in Mandarin, taught language courses at Indian River State College, and was sought out as an expert on global security issues.
For him, the impact he had on students was most meaningful. Upon hearing of his passing, a student who is now engaged in global health work in Africa said, "He had a tremendous impact on my life. Dr. Forage’s passion for helping others, and equally important, his willingness to push the limits of traditional training, opened my eyes to so many opportunities and challenged me to pursue excellence in my humanitarian work.”
Paul Forage’s obituary can be found here.