- Oral History Workshop
- Borderlands Workshop
- Leadership Institute
- Athens Democracy Forum
Oral History workshop, American University in Bulgaria, June 26-28, 2019
The Global Liberal Arts Alliance is soliciting proposals for oral history projects collaboratively developed and implemented at two or more Alliance campuses. Funded projects will engage with Oral History in the Liberal Arts throughout the project cycle and will be invited to a three-day workshop to be held at The American University in Bulgaria in June 2019.
Through this program, two or more Alliance schools will take up the same topic or overlapping topics in a way that sharing the stories collected across the institutions will be beneficial, producing something more powerful than would be created if the projects were undertaken separately. The sharing could include process questions, experience questions (including having students share their reflections on their interview experiences), and results (including what was learned through the interviews and through the experience of designing and executing a project of this type). Faculty collaborators do not need to be in the field together but do need to work on the same or overlapping questions where sharing will be beneficial to all participants.
Borderlands workshop at the American College of Greece, June 19-24, 2019
The American College of Greece will host a six-day workshop on the multidimensional impact of the immigration crisis on borderlands, both physical and conceptual. The workshop will promote research on new configurations of sociopolitical, cultural, and legal conditions over and across borders, in the context of (forced) migration, as well as discussion on pedagogical approaches to address 21st-century borderlands experienced and conceived under stress due to immigration. An expected workshop outcome is forging connections between Alliance participants and across Alliance institutions leading to research collaborations resulting in publications and workshops; in addition, it will promote development of pedagogical materials for teaching and learning about borders, including shared teaching practices and resources. Emphasis will be placed on place-based learning through a two-day site visit to a Greek island at the EU border in collaboration with local NGOs. Please read the Call for Proposals for additional information.
The 2018 Institute, Leadership and Liberal Arts: A Foundation for Social Good, explored ways that Global Liberal Arts Alliance schools articulate the role of liberal education in the development of leadership for social good. This exploration encompassed aspects of liberal education that Alliance schools have in common as well as the unique institutional contexts that shape their approaches to leadership and make them vital.
The notion of leadership as service aligns well with the missions of our institutions. We believe in development of the whole person, preparing each student for a life of meaning – in their career and personal life – with a sense of service beyond self.
Institute sessions provided examples of curricular, co-curricular, and extra-curricular programs that develop leadership skills and behaviors (full Institute program). What these programs have in common is that they challenge students by asking them to tackle problems, often from the local community, whose solutions are not immediately obvious and require that students interact closely (questioning and listening) with people whose life experiences may have been very different from that of the students.
The sessions and accompanying discussions produced the following conclusions about leadership development at our institutions:
- Theory must be matched with practice – experience with a range of open-ended problems stretches students intellectually and emotionally
- Students must reflect on these experiences
- These are educational experiences with emphasis on process over product
- In that context, failures as well as successes must be treated as growth opportunities
- It is through these experiences (these challenges) that students develop a stronger sense of self, find empathy, clarify a set of values, and build the confidence to act on those values, tempered by humility
There were 62 attendees from 26 Alliance schools, including 26 students from 19 Alliance schools. The students attended all Institute sessions and workshops (including student presenters in 12 of 16 sessions). Inspired by our very good experience with student working groups at the 2017 Athens Democracy Forum, the students were asked to engage in small group work on issues of leadership and leadership development, culminating in two student panels that closed the Institute. While there were many good sessions at the Institute, without question the two student sessions were the best-received and generated the most interesting discussion. The students were articulate, poised, passionate, and thoughtful.
The Global Liberal Arts Alliance will once again join with Deree-The American College of Greece as Educational Partner for the prestigious International New York Times Athens Democracy Forum to be held in Athens, Greece October 9-11, 2019. The Athens Democracy Forum has become a preeminent forum to debate critical questions about the state of liberal democracy in the world. Deree and the Alliance will coordinate Forum programming for a team of twenty-four student delegates from Alliance institutions.
The Forum’s theme, “Reinventing Democracy – New Models for a Changing World”, speaks to the mission of Liberal Arts education to prepare global citizens who can work together to solve complex problems that bring positive change to a turbulent world. Forum sessions will focus on four topics deriving from the Forum theme:October 12
We and Them: The tectonic plates of nationalism and multiculturalism
The echo chamber and the Agora: The use and abuse of new and social media
The cost of Inequality: Where has all the money gone?
Back to Basics: What must be done to restore faith in Democracy?
Information about the 2018 student delegates and the work they did can be found on the Youth Democracy Forum page.