The Fiddler

Charlotte-Anne Malischewski has had a busy three years at Earlham - a time full of engagement on campus and beyond.

Her decision to graduate early made having a full Earlham experience even more important to her. Involved in various campus organizations, musical groups, and a study abroad program, Malischewski feels that her time here was well spent. "I've learned so much as a student, as an activist, and as a friend in my time at Earlham."

Throughout it all, she's always been guided by her passionate love of playing the fiddle and her drive to work for social justice and equality.

During her first year, she became involved with the Earlham Progressive Union, a group that encourages students to advance social justice. She's helped to organize several service trips to New Orleans, hoping to provide a meaningful experience for students involved with little or no cost to the students participating.

She also participated in the Earlham College Orchestra and played at the World Music Festival in Indiana with a group of Tuvan throat singers and fellow members of Earlham's String Quartet.

Soon she found new causes. Informed by fellow Palestinian students on campus about the violence present in their home, she became active with Students for Peace and Justice in Palestine. Her work with this on-campus group inspired her to travel to Palestine on her own and teach music to Palestinian refugees.

"It was a life changing experience, one where social justice and music came together. Without my time at Earlham, it wouldn't have happened," says Malischewski.

A study aboard program to Northern Ireland during her sophomore year brought her to explore more connections of peace through music. While there, she worked with local woman to share their stories and experiences of life throughout Northern Ireland's history of religious conflicts. Both Earlham students and local women worked to create visual art, poetry, original pieces of music, says Malischewski.

Seeing the connection between her two passions was an important experience. Malischewski sees music as having the power to bring about people's stories and can help them reconcile after conflict. "My experience in Northern Ireland really strengthened my interest in the relationship between culture and conflict, specifically the role of cultural elements such as music in creating and sustaining peace," says Malischewski.

This year she's busy with her work with the Interfaith Youth Core, a Chicago organization that encourages college students of different religious backgrounds to collaborate to solve important issues.

Malischewski chose to investigate the topic of "sexual ethics" to find how students from different backgrounds approach sex as informed by their religious, spiritual or philosophical beliefs. Hoping to raise awareness of sexual violence and encourage safe discussions, Malischewski has held student forums, carried out surveys, and will produce a final product publication containing contributions from 150 students on, "shared ethical guidelines for sexual encounters."

In her spare time she has kept her connection to her Canadian hometown finding time to play the traditional Celtic fiddle music found there. "The culture and music of my hometown is dear to me." Malischewski says.

Looking back at her time here, Malischewski says, "Earlham became a place where I could expand interest in music and social justice, while delving into different topics academically. It exceeded my expectations."

Malischewski is currently pursuing a master's degree in Refugee and Forced Immigration Studies at Oxford University.

Charlotte-Anne Malischewski
Charlotte-Anne Malischewski 2011

Hometown: St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada

Major at Earlham: International Studies, with a minor in music

Interests: Playing the violin and participating in student organizations

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