I feel overwhelmingly inspired by the coming together of two communities — GCE Chicago and Falling Whistles. Sean Carasso, vagabond scribe and film maker, experienced a life-changing reality shift when he witnessed children in the Congo being victimized in horrific ways. He started a movement to rehabilitate and educate these children, to advocate on their behalf, and to engage all of us in the process of stopping this tragic war. Joined through serendipity by his Congolese colleague Yves, and a relentless crew of interns (Jen was representing today), they met with GCE students to watch their videos and share common experiences, ideas, and questions. GCE has four scholarship students who were previously refugees — three who were born in Congo — and they opened up beautifully about their own past and thoughts. It is on days like today when I feel confident that our educational model not only works but works beautifully. GCE students inspired by inspiring people making change in the world; these are REAL opportunities for learning about rhetoric, voice, and making stuff happen despite an onslaught of challenges.
There is much more to say about, but I’ll limit myself to a few grateful acknowledgments: thank you to GCE Advisory Board member, Michael Trainer, who facilitated the connection, and to Sean, Yves, and Jen for making an afternoon of time to sit, talk, watch, listen, and engage with our staff and students, and to GCE students who shared so beautifully of themselves.