The Learning Adventure at the CIEE Conference
From November 6-8, The Learning Adventure exhibited at the annual CIEE conference in Brooklyn, New York. This year’s theme was “Opening New Doors to Increase Diversity in Study Abroad”. Evening receptions were graciously hosted by the Global Leadership League and by Diversity Abroad, an organization dedicated to increasing and supporting diverse student involvement in study abroad. Throughout the week, international education professionals traded innovative ways to increase access to study abroad.
The presentation by CIEE’s luncheon keynote speaker, André Robert Lee, was particularly impactful. He described the ways he uses his passion for film-making to fight for social justice and equality.
Lee’s latest work was directing and producing The Prep School Negro, a documentary about his time as a scholarship student in a predominantly white high school. Coming from a poor working-class neighborhood in Philadelphia, he suddenly found himself in a different world of privilege with access to opportunities that people with his upbringing could only imagine. Ever since then, the stark contrast between abject poverty and affluence went on to ignite his own painful investigation into institutional racism in America.
At the luncheon, he screened a clip from the documentary, spoke on how we can better address the racial disparities in study abroad and held a Q&A with the audience. His presentation encouraged the audience to examine minority under-representation in study abroad, consider minority students’ challenges and ponder on how we can bridge that gap to make international education more accessible.