Sarah Shendy

ASHLAND — The departments of criminal justice and religion at Ashland University, along with the Ashland Center for Nonviolence, are hosting an event, “Dispelling the Myths and Misconceptions: Interacting with the Middle Eastern and Muslim Population,” on Tuesday, Oct. 25.

The event is open to the public and will take place in the John C. Myers Convocation Center (faculty/trustees room) from 6-8 p.m.

This presentation will be led by Sarah Shendy, an officer in the Copley Police Department since 2008 and the director of the Ohio Office of Law Enforcement Recruitment. She recently received a “40 Under 40” award from the International Association of Chiefs of Police, which is given to law enforcement officials who “demonstrate leadership, exemplify commitment to their profession and have a positive impact on their communities and in the field of policing.”

Shendy is Arab-American, holding dual citizenship in Egypt and the U.S. She was born in Saudi Arabia, but grew up in northeast Ohio. Before joining the Copley Police Department, she was a Cuyahoga County Corrections Officer. She has been involved in professional and community programs for more than 10 years.

With the Middle Eastern culture having a growing presence in communities across the U.S., Shendy’s goal of the presentation is to address common myths and misconceptions associated with the culture and the Muslim religion. Whether an officer is on an enforcement encounter or walking the local shopping mall, understanding and practicing mutual respect help to increase police legitimacy and develop positive relationships.

The Education section is brought to you by Ashland Family YMCA.

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