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CJP includes Graduate Programs in Conflict Transformation, Restorative Justice, and Transformational Leadership as well as the Summer Peacebuilding Institute (SPI), Strategies for Trauma Awareness & Resilience (STAR), and the Zehr Institute for Restorative Justice. SPI supports a wide variety of short-term courses that may be taken for graduate credit or for training. STAR offers courses that prepare participants to understand and address the impacts of trauma on communities as well as individuals with a particular focus on the traumas caused by overt violence and by the protracted experience of living in systems of oppression and injustice. The Zehr Institute offers webinars and convenes participants interested in approaching the problems of responding to harm in restorative ways. 

Graduate Programs

CJP offers an MA or Graduate Certificate in Conflict Transformation or Restorative Justice and an MA in Transformational Leadership.  The graduate programs are designed to accommodate busy practitioners by offering full- and limited-residency formats.  The 15 or 18-credit Graduate Certificates offer students the opportunity to focus on specific areas of personal interest within the graduate degree curriculum. Graduate certificates are useful for adding new skills and knowledge to other professional disciplines. Or they may be used to test the waters before enrolling in a degree program. All courses taken for a certificate can be transferred into one of the degree programs. 


The program is practice-oriented; faculty hold terminal degrees and they are also practitioners who organize learning experiences to prepare practitioners, and the student body is made up of peacebuilding and justice practitioners from around the world. Students who relocate to Harrisonburg for the programs engage in mentored practice throughout the program; with faculty and staff support. See for more information. As more students are enrolling in online or hybrid courses and staying in their own communities while they study, we are working to connect them with the almost 700 alumni of the degree programs and our extensive network of colleagues. The faculty try to provide assignment options that can be tied to a student’s work or volunteer activities.

The Summer Peacebuilding Institute (SPI) 

The Summer Peacebuilding Institute is the interface between applied research, field work, and academic work.  SPI provides specialized, intensive courses that are of specific benefit for practitioners working in situations of protracted conflict.  The courses may be taken for academic credit or for professional training.  SPI attracts between 150-200 participants from more than 40 different countries each year.  EMU hosts SPI participants for six weeks in May and June of each year, during which time 15-20 courses are offered. Many MA and Graduate Certificate students enroll in SPI classes, particularly those students who are pursuing a degree in a limited-residency format.  SPI is designed to minimize the need for students to be away from their job and community for long periods of time. See for more information. In 2020, in response to the pandemic, SPI moved online and again in 2021. Online training only courses were offered in February and March 2021. In the future, we plan to return to on-campus courses in 2022 while continuing to offer online courses at other times during the year.


STAR is a trauma awareness and resilience program that brings together theory and practices from neurobiology, conflict transformation, human security, spirituality, and restorative justice to address the needs of trauma-impacted individuals and communities. STAR seeks to prepare individuals and communities to transform trauma and build resilience. Individuals can enroll in STAR for training or for credit. See for more information.

The Zehr Institute for Restorative Justice

The Zehr Institute for Restorative Justice, founded in 2012, promotes dialogue and networking within the restorative justice field and provides education and training through web-based and onsite programs.