Activities for the Global Dominican Academic Exchange program (GDAE) 2014 drew to a close on Friday evening, November 7, when a special ceremony honored the participants in the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Georgia Transnational Law programs from September and October, 2014.
The ceremony, held in the art gallery at Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrolllo, brought all twelve students together to view for the first time the video summaries of their experience and to receive their certificates of participation from the program organizers. GDAE manager Mandy Sciacchitano gave the words of welcome, with a reflection on the meaning of exchange and how it can change people and societies.
“It is worth reflecting a bit on the word ‘exchange,’” she said. “Exchange is sharing. It is reciprocity. It is mutual change. The goal of exchange is that we change through encounters with people, cultures and ideas that are different from our own, and that make us think, learn and grow as individuals with a global vision.
Following her introduction was the premiere of the University of Pennsylvania video and program participants were recognized with certificates.
Alumni of the University of Georgia Transnational Law program prepared a very special presentation to share their reflections on the experience in Athens, complete with photographs, quotes and a day-by-day account of their adventures both in and outside the classroom. Later in November they will share this same presentation on the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo’s television station to promote the program among future participants.
Following the ceremony, the reunited students enjoyed refreshments and time to network and take photos. Rocío Billini, the director of international programs at the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo, was also in attendance.
The Global Dominican Academic Exchange program, a project of the Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and its sister organization in the Dominican Republic, Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE), an extension of their internship, research and study program, InteRDom, aims to introduce Dominican students to the American style of liberal arts education and encourage dialogue between Dominican students and their Dominican-American counterparts attending these institutions, thereby encouraging and inspiring partnership and entrepreneurship initiatives which will foster innovation and stimulate Dominican economic development and international understanding.
InteRDom, an initiative of Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE), is the premier internship, research and academic study program in the Dominican Republic. It offers international students the opportunity to research important topics at the forefront of the United Nations agenda, obtain professional experience by interning with Dominican organizations and businesses related to their fields of study and/or earn academic credits by taking courses and seminars at a local university.