Jim Proctor (Lewis & Clark College)
Though liberal arts colleges are often viewed as an escape from the world, Northwest Five Consortium (NW5C) students routinely engage in local, regional, and international field sites, and our institutions pride themselves on how these experiences help cultivate global leaders. Yet the global is a challenging realm, arguably not distinct from local and regional scales, nor some grand homogenizing force, nor the sole source of—or solution to—contemporary crisis. If anything, the global resonates with an approach to liberal education that values context and connection, one that appreciates complexity and diversity. These are the intellectual virtues necessary for our students to engage in conversations around the global.
Imagining the Global (ds.lclark.edu/ig/), a pilot 2014-15 initiative funded by the NW5C and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, promotes innovative collaboration on key global themes via a web-based learning environment that weaves together a wide range of field-based scholarly experiences, and thus links NW5C scholarship across the arts and sciences in the context of local, regional, and international sites. Imagining the Global offers NW5C students and faculty digital tools and resources for use in courses, scholarly projects, and field-based programs, and is designed to benefit participants via their incremental contributions toward a larger conversation, ultimately to help students develop more sophisticated global understandings and identities, and to view our common Pacific Northwest setting in a broader context. Via its public-facing portal, IG will also provide a showcase of cutting-edge NW5C student and faculty scholarship.
The presentation will summarize Imagining the Global, with an emphasis on how digital field scholarship offers new opportunities for collaboration across campuses and participating programs.