Greetings and Happy Midweek,
Welcome to the end of February. Here in central Pennsylvania, the milder weather today is giving us hope that winter might be in its last stretch, after back-to-back snowstorms for the past month!
Looking forward to the start of Spring, I thought we could explore another type of beginning together - the awakening of cultural awareness. In my work through Global SKILLs, this focus turns up frequently, especially as we look at learner identity/profiles, heritage, legacy and life experiences.
I had the opportunity this past week to meet with a group of long time friends several of whom worked cross-culturally for decades, both overseas and here in the US. One thing we shared were reflections on our personal histories of cultural engagement and the impact those experiences have had on us.
I shared one memory of a Japanese visitor to my home when I was a child who introduced me to indigenous people groups. I realized recently that was a formative beginning of my lifelong passion for all things cross-cultural.
Another of my significant cross-cultural beginnings was my senior year of high school which I spent in Europe as part of an awesome “Comparative Cultures” program. The academics were moderately impactful, but living in 3 different countries immersed in local communities, and traveling all over Europe for nine months, offered me crosscultural experiences and lessons I treasure to this day. Another ‘gift’ from the program was the lifelong friendships and community we, the program participants, have enjoyed. We were a small group of young women from all over the US, each bringing the dynamics of our own American cultural backgrounds to our comparative European cultures experiences. Those beginnings of cross-cultural awareness laid the foundations for many of my personal perspectives and professional pursuits to this day.
How about for you - what is one cross-cultural beginning you treasure and how does it impact you today?
Take a minute and share about that with a friend or share it here...reflecting on our beginnings really can be so inspiring!
Until next week,
Global SKILLs LINKs
For this week's online LINKs, I suggest you take your cross-cultural awakening you are reflecting on and google some facet of it...and enjoy the content - perhaps for a souvenir, or learning something new!
2021 ~ Celebrating 40 years of working in
intercultural communications and global community building
Connecting, Collaborating, Cultivating Community