On May 5th, 2018, AFS Egypt held a seminar addressing “The Role of Global Citizens in Nation Building”. Sixty educators, heads of schools and universities, leaders in the IT fields, corporate HR managers, AFS partners, friends of AFS Egypt, and AFS alumni from the 60’s to date, attended.
Ms Sherifa Fayez, Director of AFS Egypt kicked off the seminar with a brief introduction on how, in today’s world, it is in the interest of all nations to have citizens who are both globally aware and globally competent. She outlined the educational goals of AFS and explained their relevance and importance in today’s world.
The keynote speaker was UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Mahmoud Kabil, renowned actor and activist. He spoke about the need for compassion to connect with people around us and to try to eliminate differences for our world to be a better place.
Four panelists led the discussion; Daniel Obst, President and CEO of AFS Intercultural Programs, Dr. Maggie Nassif (AFS alumn ‘82), Executive Director of the Binational Fulbright Commission in Egypt, Dr. Heba Saleh, Chairman of Information Technology Institute, and Hagar Hamza (AFS alumn ‘17) and winner of best film director award in a national festival.
Dr. Ibrahim Elkerdany, media celebrity and an AFS alumnus moderated the seminar.
The discussion was lively and informative and touched upon the following important points:
+ creating a generation of global citizens who can live, work, and contribute effectively. To do so, they need to have basic competencies. Global competency, technical competency, positive attitude, ethics, and universal values.
+ The importance of intercultural competence in today’s world – compassion, empathy and understanding/ respecting ‘the other’.
+ The level of awareness of local & global challenges among today’s youth, and being to address them – responsible citizenship
+ the role of educators in tomorrow’s education.
The event marked the launch of the AFS Egypt Cultural Hub. It was agreed that this effort must be sustained in the future to achieve AFS’s goals.