Rotary Club announces free Cyber-Bullying seminar

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PHILIPSBURG – The Rotary Club of St. Maarten is proud to announce they are hosting a seminar on cyber-bullying, on Friday, February 10, from 7:00pm-9:00pm at the LB Scott Sports Auditorium.

The club has brought Dr. Sameer Hinduja, one of the world’s leading experts on the subjects of bullying and cyber-bullying, who will be giving a free seminar to teens and parents.

“Cyber-bullying is an epidemic which has, unfortunately, made its ugly way to St. Maarten. We need to start this conversation with our kids, and we need to learn some ways to deal with it. I saw a shocking statistic that only 1 in 10 youths that are being bullied let someone close to them know that they were being bullied. As parents, it is so important to be a part of this, and like I said, to start the conversation. Who knows, you just may save a loved one’s life,” said Rotarian John Caputo.

Also, a representative of the law enforcement and youth services will be on hand to answer any questions after Dr. Hinduja presents, to inform the youth of St. Maarten about the legalities of bullying here, the consequences, ways teens can report bullying activities, to name a few.

Dr. Hinduja is Co-Director of the Cyberbullying Research Center (cyberbullying.org) and Professor in the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Florida Atlantic University. He is recognized internationally for his groundbreaking work on the subjects of cyberbullying and safe social media use, concerns that have paralleled the exponential growth in online communication by young people. He works with the U.S. Department of Education and many state departments of education to improve their policies and programming related to the prevention and response of teen technology misuse.

He has written seven books, the most recent being “Bullying Today: Bullet Points and Best Practices” and the award-winning “Bullying beyond the Schoolyard: Preventing and Responding to Cyberbullying.” His newest co-authored book specifically written for teens is entitled “Words Wound: Delete Cyberbullying and Make Kindness Go Viral.” According to Google Scholar, Dr. Hinduja’s articles have been cited over 7,000 times in the fields of Computer Science, Management Information Systems, Educational Psychology, Pediatrics, Social Psychology, Sociology, Business Administration, Ethics, Developmental Psychology, Communications, Psychiatry, Counselor Education, Special Education, Educational Technology, Criminology, and Pediatrics.

Outside of research and evaluation expertise, Dr. Hinduja provides training to schools, youth organizations, parents, and teens on how to avoid online victimization and its real-world consequences. He is frequently asked to provide expert commentary by news organizations, and his work has been featured in venues that include CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360,” NPR’s “All Things Considered,” the BBC and The New York Times. He has also been interviewed and cited by hundreds of online and print media outlets. He received his Ph.D. and M.S. in Criminal Justice from Michigan State University (focus area: cybercrime) and his B.S. in Criminal Justice (minor in legal studies) from the University of Central Florida Honors College.

At FAU, Dr. Hinduja has won both Researcher of the Year and Teacher of the Year, the two highest honors across the entire university.

“On behalf of the Rotary Club of St. Maarten, we sincerely hope to see you out as a family for this very important and informative free event. Everyone will leave with tools to help cope and deal with cyber-bullying. If your son or daughter is connected to the internet, it is very likely that they have been bullied, or perhaps are the bully his or herself,” said Caputo, the Club’s Secretary and President-elect.

There will be refreshments and pizza for sale, but admission is free for everyone.

For more information about the Rotary Club of St. Maarten, contact the Rotary Club of St. Maarten Press Officer at: pressrotarysxm@gmail.com or visit the website: www.rotarysxm.org.