We’re celebrating our 10th year of the Global Speaker Series! Each year our best teachers—with years of international education experience—speak in classrooms across the United States to share their perspectives and insights with students ready to engage with critical and compelling global questions. While we used to do this for schools only, this year we’re really excited to offer these talks to anyone who would like to join. Our 2021/2022 virtual global speaker series includes a range of talks focusing on topics such as climate change, advocacy through story, and learning service.
Select one (or many!) of our free 60-min global talks (free talks are listed below) that are funded by Dragons and offer the opportunity to engage with critical global conversations. If you’re an educator interested in booking a talk for your classroom, you can do that here. Again, these are talks are open to anyone (general public) who is interested in learning more about one of these topics.
Please note that most of these talks are on Tuesdays at 5pm MST, but some deviate from that schedule to accommodate speakers’ time zones and availability.
2021/2022 Global Speaker Series Schedule
January 27th, 5pm MST
Travel is lauded as a noble pursuit, but what specifically is it about travel that broadens one’s horizons? Arguably, empathy may be one of the greatest tangible benefits of travel. This talk will examine the connections between empathy and travel, highlighting the latest research into empathy and what it actually is, as well as discussion of “ethical travel,” globalization, and Colleen’s own personal experiences throughout her last seven years of global travel.
Speaker: Colleen Dougherty, MSW, The George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis, BA Spanish Language and Literature, BS Wildlife and Conservation Biology, Ohio University
February 22nd, 5pm MST
From severe climate crises, to global pandemics and widespread unrest. We are living in unprecedented and troubled times. Yet not all is doomed. The planet’s evolutionary past has gifted us a cultural heritage full of valuable lessons and viable alternatives to address some of the most pressing issues affecting the health of the planet and everything in it. This talk is an invitation to take a deep dive into personal and collective histories to uncover useful antidotes to help a struggling planet.
Speaker: Este Migoya, B.A. in Anthropology & Latin American Studies, Honours – University of Toronto, International Studies Diploma – Sciences Po Paris
April 12th, 5pm MST
The need for agricultural expansion has increased fire use throughout the tropics, aggravating local people’s vulnerability to the changing climate. Fire management has been historically addressed from a top-down conservationist approach, when use of agricultural fires should also be integrated into discussions of rural development. This shift would emphasize strengthening local and traditional institutions for adequate fire prevention and control and provide a better fit to the local context of the actors implementing them. In this talk, Vanessa will share her doctoral research in the Tropical Andes, where almost nothing is known regarding the local institutions for fire management and how these rules are adapted to fit changing socio environmental contexts.
Speaker: Vanessa Luna, PhD student in Interdisciplinary Ecology, University of Florida (in progress) B.A. in Biology, Agraria La Molina University, Peru
May 31st, 5pm MST
Guqin, is the oldest authentic Chinese musical instrument. Pei’s talk will introduce students to the unique and subtle sounds of the Guqin that have influenced all aspects of China culture. We will trace the use of the Guqin from the story of Confucious learning the instrument to 1977 when Nasa used its sounds as a gift to the galaxy in the Voyager spacecraft mission. Pei will explore how music is an amazing medium for understanding China – from traditional to contemporary life and values.
Speaker: Pei Yuen, B.Des. in Communications Design from Shih Chien University, Taiwan
Coming Soon — The Fairy Creek Blockades: Frontline Activism and Ecologies of Change
The Fairy Creek Blockades were Canada’s largest act of civil disobedience in history, with over 1000 people arrested for blocking the logging of endangered ancient forests on South Vancouver Island, deliberately violating a Supreme Court injunction in the process. The grassroots intersectional movement brought together the people, causes and spirits of Indigenous Sovereignty as well as radical non-violent settler environmentalism, encountering numerous political challenges and tensions in the context of truth and reconciliation following the genocide and resurgence of Indigenous peoples on Turtle Island (North America). ‘Come for the trees, stay for the decolonization’ emerged as more than a catch-phrase. In this presentation and discussion, join Arvin as he recounts experiences and perspectives from the frontlines.
Speaker: Arvin Singh, MA University of Oxford