This was my photo taken Stateside at LAX, the Los Angeles Airport, before embarking on my trip to Indonesia. I have spent the year preparing for this journey with the US State Department and IREX. I learned about the need for global education for all our students, and how to actually develop a curriculum with world perspectives that empowers them to becoming international citizens. For two weeks, I will be visiting schools in Jakarta and Padang.
A few minutes before I had the photo taken above, I realized I was at the same terminal 21 years ago. I was actually carrying the same hiking backpack too. Through another federal fellowship program, I was preparing for my year study abroad experience in China to learn about my parents' language, cultures, and histories. It was a life changing trip, as it helped me articulate my identity as an American, and more importantly, as a complex, Chinese American that also could understand the native Chinese perspectives. It gave me the skills to discern and understand global identities. Anyway, so I was a global student then, and here I am 42 years years old, ready to be a global student again. I know it will change me, and I am ready.