Global Conversations

We invite students to join a new initiative, started in Fall 2020, that connects Boston College students via videoconference with other university students from around the world to discuss a range of issues that matter to you, and that you choose. These informal one-hour conversations will take place in small groups of 8-12 students; each session will have a specific topic but can range freely as participants see fit. Most conversations will be held in English, but others will be conducted in Spanish, Mandarin, Arabic, French, Korean, German, Italian, and other languages. Initially, conversations will be organized in six major themes, listed below; in coming semesters these themes may expand or change.

Students: We invite undergraduate and graduate students from BC and other universities around the world to participate. Tell us about your interests by clicking "Join the Conversation" here or below. 

Faculty and staff: If you think students at your university would be interested in joining these conversations, help us make a connection by emailing student facilitator Mariana Ferreira or faculty director Erik Owens -- or direct those students to the Join the Conversation link.

Join the conversation

Students and faculty: Tell us about your interests and we'll find a conversation for you or your students.

Sign up!

Make a connection

Help us locate conversation partners by providing contacts with faculty, staff, or students at universities around the world.

Suggest a contact

Become a conversation leader

Join our student leadership committee.

Take the lead

Campus affiliates:

Center for Human Rights and International Justice
International Studies Student Association
...More to come!

Global affiliates:

Beijing International Studies University (Beijing, China)
Ca' Foscari University (Venice, Italy)
Peace Culture Village (Hiroshima, Japan)
Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (Bogota, Colombia)
Tallinn University (Talinn, Estonia)
Tor Vergata University (Rome, Italy)
Uganda Martyrs University (Nkozi, Uganda)
University of Insubria (Como, Italy)
University of Saint Joseph (Beirut, Lebanon)

...and many more to come!


Conversation Themes

COVID-19 Pandemic

SARS-COV-19 virus image

Overview

COVID-19 began as a regional health crisis but quickly escalated into a global pandemic that has fundamentally altered the lives of most people on our planet while revealing (and deepening) existing inequalities around the world. Share your experiences, build solidarity, and discuss local solutions in these conversations.

Student Leaders

BC Coordinator: Emi Tsukada (tsukada@bc.edu)
+ Laura Bianchi, Inés Philippi, Sarah Roberge, Hollie Watts, Sofia Zinis

Conversations

Conversations about the topics below have begun or are planned with partner universities around the world:

  • University Life amidst COVID-19
  • COVID-19 and inequality
  • COVID-19 and Public Health
  • COVID-19 and Politics
     

To join a conversation, individually or as a small group of 4-6 students, click the "Join the Conversation" link here or above, and let us know your interests. A conversation leader at BC will partner with a conversation leader at another university to fill the seats and schedule the conversation. Videoconference links will be shared with participants separately.

Questions? Email the BC coordinator listed under each Theme to ask questions or suggest new topics.

Racial Justice and Decolonization

Black Lives Matter logo

Overview

George Floyd’s horrific murder in June 2020 by Minneapolis Police officers ignited protests across the United States, then around the world, against structural racism and police brutality. Anti-blackness and other forms of racism are enduring problems in many societies that deeply impact government, politics, education, public health, religions, the economy and the environment. Share your experiences, build solidarity, and seek solutions in these conversations. 

Student Leaders

BC Coordinator: Brianna Stonick (stonickb@bc.edu)
+ Nye Day, Kyoka Miura, Mary Su

Conversations

Conversations about the topics below have begun or are planned with partner universities around the world:

  • Decolonization and Racial Justice in Universitites
  • The Global Movement for Black Lives
  • Anti-Blackness and Social Justice
  • Decolonization, Monuments, and Reparations
  • Restorative Justice: Monuments, Memorials, Museums
  • Prospects and Pathways to Racial Justice 
     

To join a conversation, individually or as a small group of 4-6 students, click the "Join the Conversation" link here or above, and let us know your interests. A conversation leader at BC will partner with a conversation leader at another university to fill the seats and schedule the conversation. Videoconference links will be shared with participants separately.

Questions? Email the BC coordinator listed under each Theme to ask questions or suggest new topics.

Protests & Social Change

Women's Protest 2017, by Mobilus In Mobili

Overview

Protests bring the power of collective action to the public square, rendering visible calls for (or against) social change that might otherwise be unseen and unheard. They take on very different shapes and purposes around the world, whether expressing outrage over specific laws or general political corruption, building support for economic or racial justice, or pushing against shifts in cultural norms that are seen to be too fast. Share your experiences and perspectives on protest movements and the possibility of social change in these conversations.

Student Leaders

BC Coordinator: Tonie Chase (chaseto@bc.edu) 
+ Emma Butler-VanderLinden, Mar Garcia, Pearson Love, Kyoka Miura, Hollie Watts

Conversations

Conversations about the topics below have begun or are planned with partner universities around the world:

  • Students as Activists 
  • Freedom of Speech
  • Social Media, Protest, and Social Change
  • Performativity vs. Actualizing Change
  • Music as Activism for Social Justice
  • Protests for Queer and Trans Rights around the World
  • The Peace Movement
     

To join a conversation, individually or as a small group of 4-6 students, click the "Join the Conversation" link here or above, and let us know your interests. A conversation leader at BC will partner with a conversation leader at another university to fill the seats and schedule the conversation. Videoconference links will be shared with participants separately.

Questions? Email the BC coordinator listed under each Theme to ask questions or suggest new topics.

Environmental Justice

Earth as blue marble

Overview

Despite growing awareness about environmental issues, the overwhelming intersection between environmentalism and social justice has long been ignored in traditional environmental discourse. It has been proven that marginalized communities and people of color are disproportionately affected by the increasing effects of the climate crisis. Share  experiences with climate change and environmental injustices, and take part in discussing solutions for our planet’s future.

Student Leaders

BC Coordinator: Inés Philippi (philipin@bc.edu)
+ Caroline Denning, Nye Day, Sofia Zinis, Zeyad Anwar

Conversations

Conversations about the topics below have begun or are planned with partner universities around the world:

  • Experiences of Climate Change 
  • Nuclear Energy and Environmental Justice 
  • Environmental Racism
  • Sustainability Today
  • Our Planet in 50 Years
     

To join a conversation, individually or as a small group of 4-6 students, click the "Join the Conversation" link here or above, and let us know your interests. A conversation leader at BC will partner with a conversation leader at another university to fill the seats and schedule the conversation. Videoconference links will be shared with participants separately.

Questions? Email the BC coordinator listed under each Theme to ask questions or suggest new topics.

Globalization and Global Culture(s)

Women's Protest 2017, by Mobilus In Mobili

Overview

The technologies, processes, and ideologies of globalization have connected peoples around the world in complex ways, bringing profoundly positive and negative effects on individuals and cultures. How has globalization affected your life and culture through music, social media, movies, travel experiences, career aspirations, and your sense of global citizenship?

Student Leaders

BC Coordinator: Claire Guarini (guarinic@bc.edu)
+ Zeyad Anwar, Laura Bianchi, Ben Chieng, Nikolai Darenkov, Caroline Denning, Sam Stevenson

Conversations

Conversations about the topics below have begun or are planned with partner universities around the world:

  • The Ethics of Humanitarian Aid 
  • Capitaliism under a Blacklight
  • How and Why Should We Study Abroad?
  • Cultural Exchange and Influence in the Arts 
  • Seven Nations on Your Plates: Global Food Systems  
     

To join a conversation, individually or as a small group of 4-6 students, click the "Join the Conversation" link here or above, and let us know your interests. A conversation leader at BC will partner with a conversation leader at another university to fill the seats and schedule the conversation. Videoconference links will be shared with participants separately.

Questions? Email the BC coordinator listed under each Theme to ask questions or suggest new topics.

Migrants and Refugees

Refugee camp in Iraq

Overview

Migration is a deeply divisive issue in many countries today as the number of international migrants (over 207 million worldwide) and refugees (26 million) continues to grow worldwide in response to violent conflict, economic and political instability, and climate change. How can the world best handle these massive movements of people? How have you and your community been affected by migration?

Student Leaders

BC Coordinator: Mary Su (wenwei.su@bc.edu)
+ Zeyad Anwar, Grace Cavanaugh, Ben Chieng, Hollie Watts

Conversations

Conversations about the topics below have begun or are planned with partner universities around the world:

  • Sharing Our Immigrant Stories
  • Cultural Assimilation of Refugees and Migrants
  • How the US-China Relationship is Affecting International Students
  • Rise of Populism and Anti-Immigration Policies
  • The U.S. Southern Border and the Northern Triangle
  • Youth Migration
     

To join a conversation, individually or as a small group of 4-6 students, click the "Join the Conversation" link here or above, and let us know your interests. A conversation leader at BC will partner with a conversation leader at another university to fill the seats and schedule the conversation. Videoconference links will be shared with participants separately.

Questions? Email the BC coordinator listed under each Theme to ask questions or suggest new topics.