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Communication and Global Competence at CEA Barcelona Global Campus: Perspectives from Morocco and Israel

November 22, 2012
by CEA MOJO
One of the signature courses at CEA is Communication and Global Competence.  In this course students learn about the role that culture plays in perception and communication and are encouraged to become more aware of their own culture and identity in order to better interpret other cultures and identities.  This course provides invaluable opportunities for reflection to those studying abroad.  Moreover, the insights gained abroad are meant to be relevant at home as well, in light of increasing cultural diversity within the North American context.
This week in Professor Michael Kennedy’s section of Communication and Global Competence students have had the chance to hear from two different guest speakers, Ben Capell and Safae Jabri. An Israeli citizen, Ben has lived and worked in the USA, Japan, and Guatemala and holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Psychology and is now working on an MBA.  He spoke to students about what it is like to be an Israeli, and contrasted Israeli and American culture through Hofstede’s theory of cultural dimensions.  Safae Jabri, currently a PhD candidate in sociolinguistics, has worked as an intercultural interpreter and mediator for Moroccan immigrant women in a battered women’s shelter in Barcelona.  She spoke to the students about the collectivist nature of Moroccan and Islamic culture, drawing on examples from the everyday lives of Moroccan immigrants in Barcelona.  As a follow-up to these talks Professor Kennedy intends on discussing with his students the challenges faced in achieving peace in the Middle East in light of the distinct cultures of Israelis and Palestinians. 

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