IVLP’s Pivot to Virtual Programming: Reinforcing Networks

The following was written by Meridian Professional Exchanges Division Program Associate Julia Koski. Normally, connecting emerging leaders and Americans in traditional IVLP style is as straightforward as riding a bike, however, in the last few months, program teams have had to find a completely new set of wheels. The tried and true practice of bridging Edward Murrow’s “last three feet” with in-person programs is a paused reality due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, and online convening tools have entered as the new medium to connect with and engage our global community. In this virtual pivot, Meridian mobilized to look...

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IVLP Alumni Spotlight: E-learning and Media Literacy

This blog post was contributed by Lee Norrgard, Program Officer in Meridian’s Professional Exchanges Division. Even before the stay at home orders closed 124,000 elementary and secondary U.S. schools last spring, a survey of approximately 17,000 U.S. teachers and administrators almost unanimously indicated digital learning is now an integral part of teaching and learning. However, with the coronavirus acting as a catalyst, e-learning is dramatically changing education as millions of students remain distance learners. Without the internet, there would be no teaching and learning right now; but on the same internet, disinformation, misinformation and malinformation flourish. In a Stanford...

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Teaching in Rural Japan Amidst a Pandemic

The following was written by Regan McAllister, former Fellow in Meridian’s Professional Exchanges Division. Her perspective displays how people around the world are facing the same challenges and how we can be stronger at home by understanding global issues. Last August, I moved to a small town in northern Japan to be an English Assistant Language Teacher (ALT) through the Japan Exchanges and Teaching (JET) Program. The first seven months of living in Aomori, Japan, were lively and full of seasonal festivals, school events and regional traveling. As I enter my second year, a ‘new normal’ has taken hold...

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Alumni Impact: Fernanda Teresinha da Silva

This blog post was originally published on FIUTS, through their Alumni Impact social media campaign to recognize the work being done by exchange alumni all around the world. The author is Fernanda Teresinha da Silva who was a 2019 SUSI alumni from Brazil.  I’m Fernanda Teresinha da Silva from Brazil and I participated in the SUSI on Youth, Education and Closing Skills Gap 2019. Through the program, I feel like I advanced my understanding of humanity, my knowledge of my own potential and my outlook on my mission as an engineer and as part of the technological revolution that...

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SUSI Spotlight: A Disability-Inclusive Response to COVID-19

This blog post was contributed by Rowena Dinah Koloi is a 2020 Study of the US Institutes (SUSI) alumn representing Bostwana on the topic of civic engagement for young African global leaders. She is a highly motivated young woman who has seen the beauty of life with one eye (visually impaired). A final year student at BA Lisago University, studying Bachelor of Commerce in real estate. She is also a published author of a motivational book titled “A Walk to Remember”. It is a record of her life journey events as a person who was able to live beyond...

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