Chapter 1

The Courage and Moral Choice Project: Maine, Phase 1


  • Adele Baruch University of Southern Maine


This chapter recounts the events and early research that inspired the start of the Courage and Moral Choice Project in area schools. The project appeared to work well in a school district focused on the need to develop a climate of inclusion and empathy, as the district had recently experienced a high influx of refugees from many parts of the world into a community that had been fairly homogeneous for generations. Teachers noted an increased tendency for students to share personal stories with others after listening to stories of helping under duress. They also noted increased engagement with questions of moral choice. Both students and teachers said that they repeatedly reflected upon the question of, “What would I do if faced with similar circumstances?” Students noted that they began to identify with the stories of helpers once they engaged in service of their own.

Keywords: moral elevation, life stories, social networks

Author Biography

Adele Baruch, University of Southern Maine

Adele Baruch, PhD, is Associate Professor and Chair of Counselor Education in Clinical Mental Health Counseling at the University of Southern Maine.




How to Cite

Baruch, A. (2020). Chapter 1: The Courage and Moral Choice Project: Maine, Phase 1. Narrative Works, 9(1), 11. Retrieved from