For religious and ideological reasons the government in Iran for the past 30 years has denied members of the Baha'i religion the right to attend any Iranian institution of higher education.
It seems the Iranian government also forbids other students to take courses in higher education if they have joined organizations, expressed views or engaged in activities that are critical of the government.
The government has also tried to restrict instruction in several fields in the social sciences and in the humanities. Moreover, faculty have been fired in Iran for ideological reasons, thus denied their academic freedom.
Without any means of receiving higher education, the Baha'i Community in Iran created The Baha'i Institution for Higher Education in 1987, described by nobel laureates Archbishop Desmond Tutu and President of East Timor Jose Ramos-Horta in their open letter addressed to the academic community as "a decentralized network of teachers delivering college-level classes in kitchens and living rooms across Iran."
The Iranian government in May 2011 attacked the BIHE and has raided more than 30 homes. In so doing they have jailed several of the BIHE administrators and faculty, some of whom are still in prison for delivering higher education to Baha'i youth.
The Baha'i Club on campus wants to initiate a dialogue in order to raise awareness of the importance of defending Article 26 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which states that education is the inalienable right of every human person.
As a part of nationwide initiative called "Education under Fire" (which has started conversations around university campuses and communities to raise awareness and bring forth specific actions defending the fundamental right to education), this campaign now comes to Auburn.
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To this end the Baha'i Club, in collaboration with the Office of Multicultural Affairs, invites students and faculty to attend a screening of the documentary film, "Education under Fire," followed by a conversation to be held March 1 at 7:30 p.m. in the Student Center Ballroom.
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