Allendale Columbia Global Engagement Scholars participated in the 9th Annual Global Citizenship Conference: The Next Generation Living in a Pluralistic World held at Nazareth College on Wednesday, March 13th, 2019.
This conference for high school students is designed to give the future leaders of our world the tools to respond to intolerance, improve religious literacy, and show the etiquette required to work in a pluralistic world. Participants become more aware of cultural and religious diversity, gain understanding and dispel stereotypes about various religions, and learn effective skills of discourse based on respect, plurality, and conflict resolution.
The AC Global Scholars developed and led two workshops. One, titled “Putting Yourself in Their Shoes: What is empathy? What is compassion? How do they connect and why do they matter?”, was led by Ellie Stathopoulos ’21 and her team of Chris Smoker ’23, Piper Wilson ’22, Erin Kim ’21, Brynn Peters ’21, Gabby Barelli ’23, Eliza Nicosia ’22, Chinara Dorancy ’21, with Ms. Ty Lougher as faculty advisor.
In their session, they used short videos, had participants create skits, and discussed the similarities and differences between empathy and compassion. “Empathy matters because it helps us make connections with others,” the group posited in their introduction. “It helps us understand the emotions of others that may differ from your own and helps us to be able to have connections with people with different emotions and feelings and not dissociate with them just because you may disagree.” Their position was also that “compassion matters because it is also how we connect with others and show we care. It is important because it is underlying in kindness and consolation and the ability to understand what one may be feeling or going through so others understand people care about them.”
Another group of Global Scholars that led a workshop on “The Holiday Table: How to respectfully disagree with friends or family members when controversial topics arise.” Sarah Ash ’21, Mara Goodyear ’21, Mary Cotter ’22, Autumn Flowers ’21, Mikayla Gross ’19, Ella Hocker ’19, Alicia Strader ’21, and Raheema Muhammad ’19 led discussions and role-play simulations around how to:
- positively exchange interactions between someone you may disagree with
- be open-minded when it comes to a heated topic
- effectively agree to disagree with family members in order to prevent separation or huge confrontations
- determine when debates are futile and off-topic so that you can redirect conversations
- state your opinions without making other opinions feel invalid
The leadership, creativity, and strong communication skills that the scholars demonstrated during the conference speak to their level of preparedness for the world they will inherit.
The AC Center for Global Engagement at Allendale Columbia is committed to growing and fostering partnerships around the world, exposing students to global opportunities and multicultural perspectives in preparation for college and the global workforce, and creating a culture of global responsibility that allows students to make a positive and lasting impact on the world they will inherit.
Katherine WesternKate comes to AC from Fairport High School where she taught for 11 years. She served as Fairport's Coordinator of the Academic and Cultural Explorations Program for two years and the Coordinator of the Irish Exchange Program for four years. Kate taught in Onondaga Central Schools and Rochester City Schools in addition to teaching Spanish to students aged 3-7 at the Webster Montessori School. Additionally, she served as the Academic Director of the American Language Institute at Nazareth College for four years and was also an English as a Second Language Instructor in that program for six years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Adolescent Education and a Master of Science in Inclusive Education from Nazareth College, as well as experience studying at the Instituto de Estudios Espanoles in Valencia, Spain.
Posted in: Authentic Learning, Centers for Impact, Eleventh Grade, Global Engagement, Highlights, Ninth Grade, Tenth Grade, Twelfth Grade, Upper School