Tear gas floated upwards, stinging our eyes. I felt lost in this sea of bodies, emotion, and politics – but this was just another daily protest in Istanbul. My global fellowship was the most formative experience of my undergraduate studies. Through my work at the Turkish Coalition of America, travels around Turkey, and witness of the Taksim Square protests, I was transformed. I returned from Turkey a much different 20-year old: I was reading more and hosting conversations with my peers about global issues. My priorities shifted from employment to engagement; an engagement of my local and global communities through the personal and professional skills I gained from my experience and four years of study. I was no longer seeking a job, but a lifestyle and value system that aligned with global citizenship. I certainly noticed the internal change, as did employers. Microsoft was fascinated by my transformative summer in Istanbul and how the experience sculpted my view on the convergence of business, religion and culture. I had original thoughts, an opinion to give; the real world requires such declarations.
As a Global Fellow in 2013, Carlton Gossett spent the summer in Istanbul, Turkey developing a passion for the intersection of religion and market economics in a cosmopolitan Muslim city.
What if we could see the world through new eyes?
For many of us, our experience of the world outside our immediate surroundings is limited to news reports or the pictures we see on Facebook.
We each grow up in a family, a city, a state, a country that has a set of rhythms and patterns; norms we live by created and reinforced by a society. This frames how we see the world. For many of us, our experience of the world outside our immediate surroundings is limited to news reports or the pictures we see on Facebook.
Global citizenship begins with the premise that we are part of something beyond geographic and political boundaries. This perspective builds a bridge of understanding and compassion.
Each year, SCU’s Leavey School of Business Global Fellows Program
sends students to locations across the globe: the Middle East, Africa, Asia, South America, and the United States, to work with non-profit and for-profit organizations. Each organization provides exposure to global citizenship through an enhanced understanding of cultural, economic, social, political, and technological factors that underlie social injustice, marginalization, and privilege.
Founded in 2008 by Linda Alepin as part of the Global Women’s Leadership Network
, the Global Fellows Program has provided 188 fellowship opportunities, ranging from social work in an Indian orphanage to environmental policy revision in Jakarta, Indonesia.
The program aims to foster global citizens. Each student’s experience is unique, but the common thread is that through the Global Fellows program they see themselves as connected to the larger world and an integral part of the solution to global challenges.
Through understanding our interconnectedness we cultivate change
By recognizing our collective responsibility to solving the world’s problems, we can begin to comprehend how our gifts and talents might be used for good, to benefit not only ourselves but for humanity.
*Article was co-written with Carlton Gossett, SCU alumni class of 2015