Monday, January 2, 2017

Another Day With the Tanzania Program of Gustavus Adolphus College

Today I spent several hours at the Mount Olivet Conference & Retreat Center talking with students of Gustavus Adolphus College who are going to Tanzania on a study program. They have been undergoing pre-departure orientation, and Professor Barbara Zust had invited me to speak with them, as I reported in a previous blog post.

As in the past, the students, have been reading my book, Africans and Americans: Embracing Cultural Differences, and my meeting with them was an opportunity for them to meet me and ask questions.

After introductions, I started by commending these students for their decision to go on a study abroad program and experience a culture different from their own. I shared my own experience in the U.S.A. and the positive effects it has had on me, enabling me to be a bridge, so to speak, between Africans and Americans.

With those remarks, the conversation began. The questions the students asked, concerning appropriate behaviour, not only showed clearly how well they had thought about what I say in my book, but also afforded me valuable opportunities to clarify what I had written as well as what I had not. I did say, however, that I have been aware, for some years, of the need to write on matters I did not address in my book, and that I am working on that project.

This was another remarkable group of students from Gustavus Adolphus College. We talked for over two hours and were very pleased, as the photo above shows. Professor Zust is seen in the back row, next to me, and in the front row, on the right, is Pastor Todd Mattson, co-leader of the program. The group departs for Tanzania on January 4. For updates, visit withonevoiceTanzania.

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