She’s on the far left in the back row wearing the blue hat!

Group Ecuador shot

Gabriela off to Ecuador 1 Gabriela off to Ecuador 2 Gabriela Ecuador Itinerary 2015

My wife and I are very excited for her!

Yesterday I became aware of this fantastic video that summarizes recently published research on the community impacts of international Volunteering, Voluntouring.  The Building a Better World Community has made the video available at http://globalsl.org/video1/.  The video is great and worth watching followed by reflection and discussion!

After viewing the video take some time to peruse and bookmark the site and consider connecting via their Facebook page and Twitter at @BuildingBetterW and Blog!

The video is especially timely for me as my 13 year old daughter will be departing next week for a twelve day service learning trip to Pucará, Ecuador through her middle school.  This video will help me and my wife as we talk with her about her experience upon her return!

International Higher Education Consulting has partnered with Powell’s Books out of Portland, Oregon. Please click on the Powell’s button below to be taken to the IHEC Bookstore!

Click here to visit Powell's Books!

Several years ago I read with much interest a post on the U.S. Department of State blog DIPNOTE written by Melvin Hall that was promoting their National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) program. The NSLI-Y program provides U.S. youth, between the ages of 15 and 18, funding to study Arabic, Farsi, Hindi, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Russian and Turkish overseas for a summer, semester or academic year.

While this program is very interesting and worthy of its own blog post I was introduced to the very interesting concept of the “Quiet Game.” In contrast to the “Great Game” which Hall quotes as “the struggle that takes place between states, nations, political groups, and national leaders for power and influence”[1], the “Quite Game” is the “everyday game of life where families get up in the morning, have plans for themselves, their children.”[2] Hall ties the “Quiet Game” nicely to international education exchanges and states that “when we engage in the ‘Quiet Game’ with people from around the world, we take advantage of a wonderful opportunity to learn about their individual aspirations and dreams for their families and children…engaging in the ‘Quiet Game’ with our counterparts from around the world requires commitment –commitment to seek out cross-cultural encounters, commitment to learn someone else’s language, and commitment to live for an extended period of time in another culture.” You can learn more about the “Quiet Game” in A Political Economy of the Middle East (3rd Edition, 2007) by Alan Richards and John Waterbury.

[1] Quote from Djavad Salehi-Isfhani’s discussion during the Brookings Institution November 10, 2008 proceedings on Arab Youth Between Hope and Disillusionment: Toward a New U.S. Strategy in the Middle East, p. 40.

[2] Ibid

Note: originally posted to IHEC Blog back in January 2009.

Many scholars in the Social Sciences fail to address the role of education in their scholarship and how it connects with their discipline. This is not to say that education has a place in all social science scholarship. In a 2007 article by Joseph Nye entitled “Squandering the U.S. ‘Soft Power’ Edge” he highlights the importance international education and cultural contacts played during the Cold War. Nye describes the three ways a nation can achieve power: “by using or threatening force, by inducing compliance with rewards, or by using soft power.” He provides examples from Yale Richmond’s work Cultural Exchange and the Cold War highlighting the significant role that academic exchanges played in enhancing American soft power. One example is that “between 1958 and 1988 fifty thousand Soviets visited the U.S. as writers, journalists, officials, musicians, athletes and academics and an even larger number of Americans went to the Soviet Union during this time period. For example, Aleksandr Yakovlev studied under political scientist David Truman at Columbia University in 1958, became a Politburo member and had much influence on Mikhail Gorbachev. Additionally, Oleg Kalugin who was a high official in the KGB is quoted as saying “exchanges were a Trojan Horse for the Soviet Union. They played a tremendous role in the erosion of the Soviet system…They kept infecting more and more people over the years.” [1]

A question I pose for discussion is: Why is education so often left out of the discussion on the rise and fall of nations and do you agree or disagree with the importance that Nye and Richmond place on education, in this case academic exchanges, in contributing to the fall of the Soviet Union?


[1] Quotes and description taken from Joseph S. Nye. (2007) Squandering the U.S. ‘Soft Power’ Edge. International Educator, (16) 1, 4-6. Joseph S. Nye is Distinguished Service Professor at Harvard University.

Note: Article originally posted to International Higher Education Consulting Blog on February 22, 2007.

The Millennial Compass: The Millennial Generation In The Workplace‘ published by MSLGROUP

“The Millennial Compass” reveals workplace dynamics across the globe, with insights from millennials in Brazil, China, France, India, the UK and the USA. It seeks to shed light on what is most important to today’s younger workers, what they want in their relationships with managers and their expectations of career progression.

Of special note on millennials in the U.S.:  Out of 15 factors focusing on what’s important in millennials’ working lives, millenials in the U.S. ranked “Working in a multi-cultural environment” #14 and “International experience” #15!

You can access the report at: http://mslgroup.com/insights/publications/2014/the-millennial-compass/

I learned about this report last week through mention of the Time Business article ‘The Huge Mistake Millennials Are Making Now‘ when I was at the IIE Generation Study Abroad Think Tank.

What are your thoughts about this?


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