We finished the last session of Global Agenda Seminar series 2019 this afternoon (September 29).  We began on June 1 and thus, it has been four months of addressing the issue of “Working Across Differences.”  We picked this relatively difficult topic for this year, because that is precisely what is required today and in the future for all of us.

At the last session, 5 groups presented their program “designed to teach diversity is to kids and increase their capacity for diversity.”  Each group was free to target any group (from 5th grade to high schools, it turned out) and to design the format and content of the program-whether they do it as a part of curriculum of schools, separate program they offer, etc. etc.  From our experience of issues from the past, I sent note about how to do group project efficiently and effectively as well as ask them to hand in mid-term report.  I commented on their mid term report and also made myself available to questions during the past few days.

All the groups made significant progress from the midterm report, indicating that the groups worked so hard during the past two weeks.  We invited Dr. Kiyoshi Kurokawa, who have supported this seminar series since we started in 2010 to join us to make comments.  After all the presentations, we asked all that were present to evaluate all the groups according to the criteria we provided before.

Based upon the evaluation, we selected the No. 1 team. I reminded them my remarks at the first session in June.  That is, what kind of person do you want to be by the end of the series/by the end of the year?  I hope they reflect what they have done during the past four months and move on,

We did get-together at the nearby Italian restaurant and I talked with many people (We also took group pictures with all and with each team at the Academy Hills.)  It has been a good opportunity for me to get to know people over the four months and I hope it has been a good one and will continue to be a good one for all the participants.  I am grateful to the Academy Hills staff who worked hard to make this series happen.