By Nelson Graves
Their interests range from writing to improv comedy, from international relations to sailing. They come from different continents and backgrounds but have a common interest in discovering the world and driving positive change.
They are News-Decoder’s student ambassadors.
“I got involved with News-Decoder in the hope of inspiring my fellow millennials to engage in conversation about the issues that may shape our future,” said Rae McFadden.
McFadden is a first-year student at Indiana University in the United States and one of a dozen ambassadors representing academic institutions in News-Decoder’s pilot program.
The institutions include secondary schools, universities and graduate programs in eight countries on three continents. The goal is to have students, faculty and administrators at the institutions use News-Decoder to interact with each other and with experts, to publish multimedia articles on big global issues and to break down barriers to understanding.
The student ambassadors are important links between News-Decoder’s team, including its experienced correspondents, and the institutions. In the near term they are helping to drum up interest in a News-Decoder contest that will award $1,000 in prizes to students at partner institutions who submit the best articles on a series of global topics.
The prize money was donated by an anonymous supporter who believes in News-Decoder’s mission.
The ambassadors are also helping to promote two News-Decoder online events in the next month: a webinar with Dr Jonathan Lyons on “Covering Islam” and a round table, hosted by Greens Farms Academy in the United States and including participants from a number of pilot partner programs, on the subject of refugees.
News-Decoder was created to serve young adults who will be the next generation’s leaders, and our twelve student ambassadors are in their generation’s vanguard.
They have a wide range of interests that testify to the diversity of their views: journalism, visual arts, politics, the environment, hiking, dance, human rights, law, languages, among others.
Here are the institutions participating in News-Decoder’s pilot phase:
- American College of Thessaloniki (Greece)
- American University (United States)
- Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece)
- Bournemouth University (Britain)
- Cornell College (United States)
- Greens Farms Academy (United States)
- Indiana University (United States)
- ISF Academy (Hong Kong)
- King’s Academy (Jordan)
- School Year Abroad (China, France, Italy, Spain)
- Westover School (United States)