2 responses to “Bridging the tech gap for international students”

  1. Peter Wanyenya

    Kudos to the Chapman Learning Commons Tech Training program. Indeed, it’s helping UBC WUSC-SRP students access and benefit from UBC’s robust library services and facilities in order to meet their personal and career development goals and broader learning outcomes.

    As someone who serves UBC’s richly diverse student populations, I see possibilities for the UBC Library to continue to be a bridge for intercultural understanding.

    To me, libraries are incubators of imagination for they house materials that open up old worlds, and give us a glimpse into new worlds yet to be found.They are places where inquiry and ideas collide into new realms of innovation. They are also places where people of all walks of life can meet in the pursuit of knowledge.

    I believe it’s in the UBC Library offering services and programming that seeks to tease out different worldviews, ways of being, and value systems that it can continue to foster intercultural understanding on a global campus like ours.

    For example, wouldn’t it be fascinating to engage in programming that draws from the experiences of people like the WUSC-SRP Students who can give us new insights into educational experiences in diverse contexts, or student perceptions of indigenous educational curriculum, pedagogy, and systems compared to what we find in BC or across Canada.

    How exciting would it be if the UBC Library offered access to more materials found in libraries from around the world in languages like Amharic, Luo, Tagalog, Mingrelian, Mossi, or Maori, to name a few. Wouldn’t it be fascinating to participate in programming where students and/or alumni, as local language speakers of said texts gathered and shared their perspectives on how they understood and gave meaning to the knowledge found within these texts through their indigenous voices.

    I think the possibilities are only bounded by our imaginations…

  2. Linda Ong

    Hi Peter,
    Thanks so much your suggestions – they are great starting points for the Library to pursue! We have also had conversations with Alden Habacon, UBC’s DIrector of Intercultural Strategy on how we can further explore intercultural fluency with undergraduate and graduate students. I believe he expressed it best when he commented on the library being a natural gathering point for this kind of programming.

    On the subject of languages, we’re working on some interesting projects including the Aboriginal Audio Digitization and Preservation Program (http://about.library.ubc.ca/2014/01/07/digitizing-aboriginal-knowledge/) that preserve valuable oral histories, traditions and culture.

    Would love to hear any other suggestions from others on and off campus on how we can support intercultural fluency!

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