Alumni Happenings: Disaster Preparedness, Refugees, and Web Design

Cultural Vistas alumni spent a fair share of time in the media spotlight this month. Some were interviewed about their international exchange experiences in the United States. Others served as subject-matter experts on everything from El Niño preparedness to military affairs. As often is the case, several alumni also were the ones “behind the pen”, including a feature in the New York Times.

See a snapshot of what our global alumni have been up to in this month’s alumni happenings.

1. YSEALI alumnus discusses U.S. impression on Philadelphia radio

Daniel Devan, an alumnus of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) Generation: Earth workshop Cultural Vistas organized in April 2015, discussed race, politics, and his experience in the United States in a radio interview on the Nick Taliaferro Show in Philadelphia. Daniel, of Malaysia, was participating in a short-term program with Temple University focused on intercultural dialogue, sponsored by the YSEALI initiative.

Of course, since Daniel (center) was in the neighborhood, we coordinated a mini-reunion with our YSEALI Generation: Earth support staff Michelle Kulikauskus and Anthony Naglieri.

2. Robin Lerner shares the story of IAESTE alumni at Prague conference

Robin Lerner, the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Private Sector Exchange at the U.S. State Department, blogged about her recent experience at the 69th annual International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience (IAESTE) Conference. In this feature, Lerner discusses the lifelong international bonds that exchanges often form, highlighting the special friendship between Darra Klein (a former staffer) and David Čeljuska of Slovakia, an IAESTE alum who trained in the United States in 2001.

Our IAESTE alumnus David Čeljuska (back) at our old Columbia, Maryland offices in 2001.


3. Alfa alumnus talks Russian oil crisis with Business News Network

Zach Witlin, an Alfa Fellowship Program alumnus and Associate at the Eurasia Group, weighs in on how the oil collapse is impacting the Russian Economy.


4. Bosch alumna set to speak at National Infantry Museum

Gayle Tzemach Lemmon, a Bosch alumna and New York Times best-selling author, is set to speak at the National Infantry Museum on April 14 as part of the release of her book Ashley’s War in paperback.


5. IAESTE alumnus talks El Niño preparedness with San Francisco Business Times

IAESTE alumnus and director of the Consortium for Capacity Building, Michael “Mickey” Glantz, explained the importance of advanced preparation when it comes to El Niño. “Particularly because this El Niño won’t only see coastal flooding, but tidal surges going far inland – which will affect more than just property on the coast.”

Mickey participated in the IAESTE program in 1961, interning at French steel mill in the small town of St. Michel de Maurienne. In a recent blog post, Mickey shared how he returned to this small town 55 years later to give a lecture at a local university. Thanks to his blog post contribution, we reconnected with Mickey at our recent Denver alumni get-together in February.

Alumni Relations Officer Richard Bobo (left) and IAESTE alumnus Mickey Glantz (right) at a recent Cultural Vistas alumni get-together.

6. White House Names its Champions of Change

Cordell Carter II, President and CEO of the TechTown Foundation and a Bosch Fellowship alum, was one of nine individuals recently recognized by the White House as a “Champion of Change” for his work leading TechTown programs in Chattanooga. TechTown is a next-generation learning center that offers computer science education programs for children of all skill levels from ages 7 to 17.

Cordell Carter, pictured here, participated in the Robert Bosch Foundation Fellowship Program in 2006-2007.


7. CBYX alumna leverages community for redesign of SanDiego.Gov

Kristine Angell, a 1998 alumna of the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange Program for Young Professionals and Founder of Hopscotch Labs, was in the news recently for her organization’s work with the city of San Diego to its “digital front door”.


8. Alfa alumna explains how art and 3-D animations are transforming German subways

Charly Wilder, an Alfa Fellowship Program alum and a freelance writer for the New York Times, explains how after an investment of 15 years and $950 million, Germany is transforming “commuter drudgery into art appreciation.”


9. Bosch alumnus writes about refugees crisis

Parke Nicholson, a Senior Research Associate at AICGS and a Bosch alumnus, discussed how Europe and the United States continue to debate the migration crisis and the potential consequences that may result.

If you were a participant of a program administered by Cultural Vistas and are interested in sharing your story, or connecting with current and former colleagues,  please post in the comments below or email alumni@culturalvistas.orgWe also encourage you to join fellow Cultural Vistas alumni on LinkedIn and to update your contact information so we can keep in touch and inform you of regional alumni events and other opportunities.