India trip for Hawaii teacher as winner of Global Education Travel Fellowship

Laurel Matsuda, a teacher at Waimea Country School in Hawaii has been  selected to travel to India by the Teachers for Global Classrooms Program (TGC) . Laurel is a participant in a year-long development opportunity for professionals to become leaders in global education. The group of 82 teachers was selected from 32 states. The program includes an eight week graduate level online course on globalization, a Symposium in Washington DC, and a three week International Travel Fellowship to one of six countries.laura

When asked about going to India, Laurel responded, “I will be traveling first to south central India with a group of 16 other teachers. We’ll spend about a week there and then travel to various parts of the country. We will meet teachers and visit local schools. Then we reconvene in New Delhi.” She continued, “I’m really excited about the opportunity to travel to such an exotic locale. Also, I am motivated to learn how schools operate in another country and bring the lessons back to our school.”

When asked about being chosen, Laurel who teaches the fourth and fifth grades, said, “The world we live in is increasingly interconnected. As educators we need to prepare our students for jobs that don’t exist yet, in fields that we may not even conceive of, and to be competitive in the globalized future. I am privileged to be part of this awesome network of amazing teachers.”

Amy Salling, the head of Waimea Country School, commented, “Through Laurel’s inspired teaching we are going to help our students grow to be thoughtful, caring, empathetic, productive, and successful citizens of our country and the world.” Amy continued, “I was grateful to be able to travel with Laurel to Washington DC for the global symposium. It was a terrific, exciting experience. I feel energized by my few days at the symposium. We interacted with so many smart, like-minded folks.”

Laurel and Amy both stressed how important this award is for the educational experience, and to help inspire students develop the skills and knowledge to become global 21st century leaders.  They agreed that the goal of the TGC Program is to have teachers become world-wide ambassadors to classrooms, schools, and broader communities. Upon her return, Laurel will compile a Global Education Guide as the TGC capstone project, which may serve as a resource for WCS and other schools in the community. She is excited to share her own professional development with other teachers.

TGC is a program of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and administered by IREX. Waimea Country School is a small, independent, elementary day school located inKamuela, Hawai’i. They offer a curriculum that embraces a multiage learning program that incorporates literature, fine arts, mathematics, science, Hawaiian Studies, health and fitness, social studies, and technology. More information may be found at the Waimea Country School website and Facebook page.  – PRNewswire.

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