The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Instructor describes global marketplace

By Terra Alken/reporter

Women need to make themselves more aware of their global surroundings, a South Campus English instructor said during a Women’s History Month seminar earlier this month.

Altheria Gaston presented How Can I Prepare Myself to Function in the Global Marketplace to students from Women in New Roles March 6.

With help from Dr. Janine M. Lund, psychology instructor, Gaston gave the audience a quick quiz on facts about the world to get an idea of where everyone stood. The test included such facts as 2.4 billion people live on less than $2 dollars per day and less than 3 percent of water on earth is for drinking.

After everyone took the quiz, Gaston congratulated those who made a perfect score.

“ You are able to function globally,” she said.

Gaston defined globalization as a primarily late 20th and early 21st century phenomenon characterized by increasing ability to exchange goods and services internationally. She said that meant the actions of those in one country can seriously affect those in another part of the world.

“ We can go to a gas station down the street and experience globalization,” she said.

Gaston said globally competent students share some characteristics. They have proficiency in foreign language, a basic understanding of at least one other world, a diverse and knowledgeable world view, cross culture sensitivity and adaptability.

Global students, Gaston said, also know how to learn independently and how to manage or interact with people effectively.

Students also received suggestions on how to prepare themselves for a global marketplace. Gaston said they should learn from other students, take a course that begins with the word world and watch or read international news. In addition, she told students to learn a second or third language, improve computer skills, attend international conferences and, most importantly, study abroad.

“ A lot of people say I don’t need to know; that’s not for me,” she said.

However, Gaston said people need to be educated and education helped her a lot. She introduced Claire, an audience member who is in one of her classes and is from England.

“ Claire helps me learn the England way of life,” she said.

Gaston recently attended the Salzburg, Austria, global seminar sponsored by TCC.

“ The trip changed my life,” she said.

Ever since her time there, Gaston said she has been more interested in getting to know people around her with different backgrounds from her own.

“ If we don’t learn about others, we don’t grow,” she said. “The most edifying part about the trip was talking to people who didn’t share the same beliefs and values as I have,” she said.

When Gaston told her mother she was going to Austria, her mother asked, “Is that close to Iraq?”

She laughed as she explained to the audience how she helped her mother understand exactly where Austria is.

Gaston urged everyone to apply for the Salzburg experience because she believes it can help people educate themselves more.

“ How can we make education different?” she asked. “It starts one teacher at a time.”

Gaston is from a small town in Alabama with a population of only 1,800. She has a master’s degree in English and has taught at TCC for three years.

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