Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Future Casting from 2016

From my experiences this summer, here are some ideas as you think about engaging your students for their global future.

You can pretty much travel to any global city and experience a microcosm of another culture. Go to Chinatown in Philly, Little Italy in NYC, the east end of London, Ashleigh in Sydney or any number of other combinations. The key is going to that 'global city' - a city that is important enough in the world economy to warrant lots of people wanting to be there. You'll probably see lots of examples of the world's biggest problems there like homelessness or food security or poverty and you'll also almost be guaranteed of the opportunity to experience another ethnicity there as well. This is fantastic for your students.

Every refugee has a smart phone. It is literally priority number one. The future is governed by connectivity - connectivity across language, cultures, and physical location. In the midst of the largest movement of people in history, individuals are tied together via technology more so than ever in the past. Our Italy team still connects with some of the people we met overseas and the same goes for teams in years past - they remain connected through the power of the Internet. For those youth leaders who have a constant no smart phone policy, you may want to refine this. Certainly there are times when smart phones are a distraction but we have moved into an age, many years ago, where being connected is the constant. Help your students navigate this so they can powerfully use connectivity.

If what they say is true about the demographic growth of Asia, Africa and the Middle East, then us Western Americans are going to have a steep learning curve when it comes to hospitality. Want to impact the future, teach your students how to be gracious hosts.

Picture: front row, UMBC Cru.

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