International House Berkeley

I-House Times Fall-Winter 2015-2016

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Much of what we strive to do here at International House involves using this historic facility as a fulcrum for engaging our resident body. Due to its seductive architecture and modern upgrades, this is a place that our residents and guests usually bond with very quickly. ey find the combination of a super location and the community ethos here something that they can connect with and use as a source of socio-emotional support during their period of studies here in Berkeley. e reality that we face in developing community here is that our diverse residents are very busy with their own academic pursuits and, hence, often don't have the time or energy to invest themselves deeply in the I-House community. is is a tendency that we try to counter by offering a diverse set of attractive programs and activities to engage our resident body more effectively. Sometimes we are able to offer breakthrough events, such as the recent speech in our Chevron Auditorium by the President of Ireland or an event like the fashion show that was part of our Global Homecoming weekend, to draw in the participation of students in the life of I-House in more significant measure. Despite such wonderful events that have made I-House the compelling place that it has become over the years, we clearly need to do more toward making I-House a more engaging place for our residents. We can't lose sight of a certain amount of intentionality in our engagement effort that reminds students of our international identity and focus. Yet, we also have to offer a palette of activities and events that our residents and guests find genuinely appealing and stimulating. at is why the ongoing work of our Center for Intercultural Leadership is so critical to our future. Now supercharged through a significant gift from longtime friends and supporters Peter and Candy Robertson and named in their honor, the (freshly re-named) Robertson Center for Intercultural Leadership is our best avenue for making I-House an even more engaging place that will have an even deeper impact on the lives and careers of our residents. We want our resident leadership training activities and orientation programs, in combination with their residential experience at I-House, to eventually be as important to them as the coursework they take on campus. And, we hope that by investing themselves in the I-House community they will make lifetime connections that will be advantageous to them wherever their life journeys may take them. Even as we focus our programming on the I-House resident body, we know that our alumni are critical to our future as well. at's why we encourage all former residents to return to I-House frequently and stay engaged with our activities too. We are striving to create even more events where current residents and alumni can interact and learn from one another. We believe that this will expand the impact of our work and make I-House an ever more engaging place. Here's to more opportunities for interaction and vibrant discourse under the I-House Dome. n Sincerely, Hans Giesecke, Executive Director Hans Giesecke has served as Executive Director of I-House since July 2012. His role is to harness the great past tradition and service of I-House to improve the present and make the future even better. 2 International House Times Toward A More Engaging I-House Executive Director's Message Hans C. Giesecke, Ph.D.

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