Jackson High School recently hosted its third annual Global Awareness Night. This year's topic was "Capitalizing on Global Opportunities: The Need for Cultural Awareness at Home and Abroad."
"We want you – all of you, our future leaders out there – to go out and explore the world, learn through your experiences, grow in your skills and in your perspectives," community member Steve Marrero said during the event. "But we want you to come back. Come back and put that talent to work here in Northeast Ohio. We want you to be a part of our community for the long term."
Parthena Draggett, Spanish teacher and Chair of the World Language Department at Jackson, said that this year's program was created to provide students with the best of what the first two events had to offer.
Students of the Jackson Academy for Global Studies (JAGS) program and the Jackson Local Schools World Language Advisory Board collaborated with more than 20 local companies and organizations to provide an open forum for the discussion of the importance of cultural awareness in the 21st century. Those who attended the event were able to talk with students and businesses about different cultures and how globalization has affected job opportunities around the world.
The JAGS program at Jackson High School utilizes curriculum that will prepare students to be "globally competent" and help students develop skills needed succeed both personally and professionally.
"JAGS is a fantastic program," freshman Madelyn Tormasi said. "It allows students who are interested in different cultures to learn more about what they are passionate about and this knowledge and awareness is great for the community."
The event's Keynote Speaker Dr. Brandon Wiley, International Studies Schools Network Director for the Asia Society, discussed how programs like JAGS came about.
Over the past ten years, the Asia Society has been trying to become more involved with promoting a global curriculum by finding school districts that would be interested in partnering with them. The Asia Society strived to answer the question: What would a whole school look like if they focused on preparing students for a global world? The answer can be seen in programs like JAGS.
Jackson High School is one of 35 schools in the United States to offer a program such as this, and one of eight in the state of Ohio.
By co-hosting the Global Awareness event, JAGS students were able to share their experiences and knowledge with others, as well as discover more about how their program is helping to prepare them for the future.
Jackson High School senior Abhishek Bhargava said the importance of hosting an event like this for students lies within the fact that "the sooner we acclimatize ourselves to the changing nature of the world around us, the better."
Page 2 of 2 - By learning about and capitalizing on global opportunities through the use of project-based learning, experiential-based learning, and world language studies, students will be able to not only gain a better understanding of the world at large, but will be able to put that knowledge to use here in their home communities.