Focus Series enlightens students on Southeast Asian life
BY CAMYLE CRYDERMAN
As the semester carries on and students continue to follow a daily schedule, it can be difficult not to get stuck in a monotonous routine. Taking a break and engaging in an outside activity is a positive way to change it up and gaining knowledge while doing so proves even better.
Schoolcraft’s annual Focus Series put on by The Schoolcraft College International Institution can do just that. Started in 2004, the series is returning this fall with an emphasis on Southeast Asia. The focus series allows students to interact with other attendees and learn from experienced speakers on first-hand accounts about all things Southeast Asian. With no pressure from homework or memorizing information, this series is purely informative and enjoyable with no stress.
“The series aims to introduce students and attendees to issues surrounding the Southeast Asian region while hopefully cultivating an interest and appreciation for what the region represents,” said International Institute Focus Series Coordinator and full time English Instructor Helen Ditouras.
She believes all students, faculty and staff would benefit from attending the series.
Beginning on Monday, Sept. 21 from 12 to 3 p.m. in Room 200 of the Liberal Arts Building, there will be a total of five meeting dates for the Focus Series this fall. Continuing on Oct. 5, Oct. 29, Nov. 3 and finishing up on Nov. 4, each date will cover topics such as colonialism, pop culture, legal aid and cinema in different countries around the region. Everyone is invited to try it out and can attend as few, or as many of the meeting dates as they wish. Sessions are open to the public and free to attend.
“I encourage those to attend who are interested in history, media, immigration and politics, among other topics,” said series guest speaker and Director of Journalism Graduate Studies at Michigan State, Geri Alumit Zeldes.
She will be speaking on the socio-political context of Ann Arbor in the 1970’s and presenting a limited release documentary on the subject as well on Oct. 5 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. in the Liberal Arts building room 200.
The first four meetings will feature specialized speakers from Schoolcraft College, Forest Park College, Michigan State University and Wayne State University. The fifth will offer a film overview of related film “The Bet Collector,” directed by Jeffrey Jeturian, and they will all provide in-depth information on Southeast Asia as well as open discussion.
Shining light on places such as Vietnam, Cambodia and the Philippines, this series allows attendees an inside look at places they may never be able to experience in person. By engaging in activities and discussions, students will learn about a new culture and maybe even discover a new passion. By simply attending one or all of the meetings, new friendships can be formed and new knowledge can be gained.
For more information on specific times and locations, visit www.schoolcraft. edu/a-z-index/international-