Valley Hosts International Journalists
Valley High School sophomore Jade Miller has yet to travel the world, but she and other social studies students recently experienced international relations when journalists from 20 countries visited her Advanced Placement (AP) World History class.
“It was cool to learn about where they come from and the politics of their country,” Miller said.
The journalists visited Iowa as part of the U.S. State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program, which brings professionals who have been identified as having contributed to the progress of their field to the U.S.
The reporters were from Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, China, Croatia, Ecuador, El Salvador, Italy, Nigeria, Paraguay, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Taiwan, Tunisia, and Turkey.
The goal of the visit was to learn more about the
U.S. political system and highlight the significance of a free and independent press to the democratic process. During their three-week visit, the journalists visited several states and the District of Columbia.
They also wanted to visit with students here in Iowa to get their perspective of life in America and its political system.
After arriving at Valley, each reporter met with two to three students in two AP World History classes taught by Kelsey Hudson and two American Heritage classes taught by Greg Hudson and Cameron Gale.
The conversations between the teenagers and veteran reporters covered topics ranging from the prevalence of Starbucks and McDonalds in America to international politics and the current U.S. presidential candidate campaigns.
“It was good to hear that high school sophomores can be interested in global issues,” said Serkan Demirtas, Ankara Bureau Chief of the Turkey’s Hurriyet Daily News.
Kelsey Hudson isn’t surprised by her students’ interest. “Global
understanding is the goal of the course, which is an elective,” she said. “But to have a global influence like these conversations is amazing.”