Eastern Mennonite University (EMU) is a private liberal arts university in the Shenandoah Valley of the U.S. state of Virginia, affiliated with one of the historic peace churches, the Mennonite Church USA. Its 97-acre (390,000 m2) main campus is located near Harrisonburg, Virginia. The university operates a satellite campus in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, which primarily caters to working adults.
Worldwide, EMU is probably best known for its Center for Justice and Peacebuilding (CJP), especially its graduate program in conflict transformation. CJP has educated and trained more than 3,000 people from 119 countries. CJP's founding director, John Paul Lederach, and its expert in restorative justice, Howard Zehr, are considered to be international leaders in the fields of peace and justice. In October 2011, CJP alumna Leymah Gbowee was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
Half of EMU's undergraduate students do not come from Mennonite backgrounds, though the majority are Christian. EMU's graduate students represent a diversity of faiths, as exemplified by the mini-bios on Islamic, Jewish, Buddhist, and Hindu alumni posted on EMU's website. About 57 percent of EMU's undergrads are from out of state (32 states; 21 countries), and 19 percent are of non-U.S. origins or minority ethnicity.
EMU describes itself as a "leader among faith-based institutions" in emphasizing "peacebuilding, creation care, experiential learning, and cross-cultural engagement."
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