Intercultural Collaboration was especially interesting, for many reasons; the Americans on our side had never met the Dutch on the other side, it was completely virtual, and honestly, at the beginning felt a little awkward. However, when we got to talking, and finally were able to connect, it was a really great experience!
Apart from this class, the biggest example of me working with people of other cultures and countries was definitely my summer studying sustainability in Iceland. I was the only American of about 20 students, and even more so, most everyone was from a different country. Cultures ranged from India, Brazil, America, Germany, Romania, Belgium and Columbia. Each week we would be placed in a different group and were expected to have a deliverable (usually a presentation) completed by Friday. More than anything, the biggest struggle was dealing with how different cultures deal with time, stress, and work. Even after studying abroad for a year in other places, I believe that my three-week sustainability course in Iceland changed me the most; it made me realize how people of different background can work together to make amazing solutions; solving anything from the energy crisis to political conflicts. The class truly changed me for the better, and I believe that this class will do the same!
With that being said, I see everyone in this course as open and willing to work hard and explore different problems in the world. We all come from different backgrounds; not just country specific, but even traditionally, economically, religiously etc.. We are all so different! But that’s what makes us most similar, that we are willing to take our backgrounds and work together, collaborate, and come up with some pretty great solutions to issues. I am really looking forward to working with my team, and to even learn a little bit about everyone’s personal “culture”!