Monday, July 13, 2009

Young People All Need to Become "Citizen Ambassadors"

Hillary Clinton joins President Obama's vision of young people helping to create a more humane and peaceful world. In her recent Commencement speech at New York University (July 10, 2009) after offering one or two examples of how young people have become a force for change around the world (I did not know about Columbia where "two young college graduates, fed up with the violence in their country, used Facebook to organize 14 million people into the largest antiterrorism demonstrations in the history of the world." she offers this encouragement to the new graduates to,

"Be the special envoys of your ideals; use the communication tools at your disposal to advance the interests of our nation and humanity everywhere; be citizen ambassadors using your personal and professional lives to forge global partnerships, build on a common commitment to solving our planet's common problems. By creating your own networks, you can extend the power of governments to meet the needs of this and future generations. You can help lay the groundwork for the kind of global cooperation that is essential if we wish, in our time, to end hunger and defeat disease, to combat climate change, and to give every child the chance to live up to his or her God-given potential."

So we as teachers have a special obligation to help our students become the "force for change they want to see in the world." We need to teach the skills and aptitudes for the new century which as Secretary of State Clinton acknowledges will be solved "by the 60 percent of the world's population under the age of 30."

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