On Feb. 26, the University of Winnipeg (U of W) will host a one-day symposium to explore themes of experiential learning and global citizenship with researchers, educators and students in the fields of education and sociology.
Experiential Learning and Global Citizenship in the 21st Century is organized by Dr. Caitlin Forsey, a sociologist and postdoctoral research fellow in the faculty of education, together with Marc Kuly, an assistant professor in the education department and is open to faculty, students and members of the community.
“What we’ve decided to do is to bring together two disciplines – the disciplines of education and sociology – and bring them into dialogue around the theme of experiential learning and global citizenship,” Forsey says.
The event brings together researchers, educators and students in the fields of education and sociology who will share their pedagogical experiences and ongoing research related to experiential learning and global citizenship.
Dr. Rory Dickson, religion and culture assistant professor at the U of W, is one of the speakers and will host a talk about his time spent in Syria during the spring of 2010 as part of the seminar program for MA and PhD students from around the world.
“Experiential learning through travel study is simply one of the best ways to foster a deep sense of global citizenship. This sense of global citizenship develops through the intensive exposure to another culture offered by such programs, where one makes close connections with people across national, cultural, and ideological borders,” Dickson says.
“This understanding then shrinks the world, in a sense, as a place that is foreign and even scary or dangerous to many Canadians. (Syria) becomes known as a place of friendly people, amazing food, beautiful architecture, and complicated politics most Canadians know too little of.”
Forsey says that one of the goals of this symposium is to help students to be exposed to the range of options that are available to them.
“We’re hopeful that students will emerge from the symposium with a better sense of what’s available and what those opportunities might mean in terms of thinking about their role as global citizens.”
The symposium is sponsored by Marsha Hanen Global Ethics and Dialogue Program, the Faculty of Education and the department of sociology.
In a statement, Marc Kruly invites all students who have studied service learning locally and abroad to participate.
“We hope these stories will provide a practical framework that will encourage other students who might be interested in global learning opportunities.”