Elementary Students Mark International Education Week by Exploring Global Citizenship at EWC


HONOLULU (Nov. 9, 2017) -- To mark this month’s International Education Week, more than a hundred 3rd - 5th graders from three O‘ahu public elementary schools visited the East-West Center today to learn about global citizenship and participate in international cultural activities.

View a photo gallery of images from the event.

Sponsored by the Friends of the East West Center community support organization, the interactive learning trip provided students from Kaelepulu, Kuhio and Waikiki Elementary Schools with the opportunity to rotate through a series of activities to encourage exploration of the kind of global thinking taught at the East-West Center. Activities included demonstrations of Indian classical dance, a tour of the current EWC Gallery exhibition on textiles from India, hands-on exploration of cultural artifacts, Q&A with international graduate students and more.

“By exploring some of the ways the East-West Center helps to develop global citizens, we wanted to give the students the opportunity to think about what that means,” said Friends of the East-West Center boardmember and University of Hawai‘i College of Education specialist Amber Makaiau. “Such an important part of it is about becoming a good thinker and asking good questions.”

Special guest Hawai‘i First Lady Dawn Ige told the students that each time she and the governor travel overseas, “we think about what it means to be a global citizen, and we learn so much about the world and different cultures. Today, it’s so easy for us to connect with other people all over the world, and that makes it even more important to start thinking about becoming the global citizen that you’d like to be in the future, about our world and your part in it.”

About International Education Week

In the spring of 2000, US President Bill Clinton issued an Executive Memorandum stating "It is the policy of the federal government to support international education." That November, the US Departments of State and Education jointly celebrated the first International Education Week (IEW). Today, this important week is observed in November each year across the United States and in more than 100 other countries as an opportunity for exchange students worldwide to share their cultures with their host communities and highlight the benefits of international educational exchange programs. The worldwide celebration of IEW offers a unique opportunity to reach out to people in every nation, to develop a broader understanding of world cultures and languages, and to reiterate the conviction that enduring friendships and partnerships created through international education and exchange are important for a secure future for all countries.