Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Technology and Development: A Collaborative Experience

As our courses are beginning to wind down for the semester, I’ve had the opportunity to look back on one of my courses this semester; Global Studies I: Technology and Development. This course was unique for me because, unlike the class back on the Burlington campus, it was a collaborative experience between the Montreal and Dublin campuses. The mix of different experiences and perspectives among the students at both campuses is what made the class compelling. For one of my projects in this class, we were encouraged to interview a business owner in our abroad city and compare their experience with the effects of globalism.
Recently in this class, we completed our global module. The global module unit of our courses involves us opening a constructive discussion between Champlain students and students in another country. In my technology and development class, however, we opened a discussion between the two abroad campuses. I was able to share my perspective on the intrusion of international business into historic townships based on my trip to Quebec City. Interacting with the people of Montreal while sharing my thoughts with other students on the other side of the Atlantic has been a truly interesting experience.
The Dublin students had the opportunity to travel to many different countries in Europe while us Montreal students primarily remained within Canada for our travels. It is interesting however, that in our global module studies, we arrive at similar conclusions. I noticed that Montreal was a highly modernized city with many global connections. When I visited Quebec city, I was startled to find a McDonalds, most likely because Quebec city feels like a much older city. Dublin students had a similar experience. While living in Dublin and visiting London, many of them found that these cities had been highly globalized, with fast food chains all over. When they visited countries like Greece, however, they found less corporate influence, but just as much connectedness. One Champlain Abroad student even found that the son of a local shop owner was applying to a college in her home town.

Studying in Montreal has certainly made me more appreciative of multicultural and globally connected communities. Every part of Montreal feels unique and yet not isolated. I can truly say that the global modules have shown me that there are tons of communities as diverse and connected as Montreal all over the world.

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