SUSA News March, 2016

Dear SIETARIANS, Global Movers and Shakers, 

Can you believe the first quarter of 2016 is almost over? Spring is almost here. This brings good news and bad news. 

Bad news first:.  Our first regional conference scheduled for April hosted by S.I.T in Vermont has been canceled due
to leadership restructure at the school.The good news is that we are moving closer 
 to more great events including 
our March webinar, Millennials and Generational Competence, as well as our annual conference in Tulsa OK 
November 9-12.

Also, this month we celebrate WOMEN HISTORY MONTH. Join us in the showcase of the women who made or are making history in the intercultural field. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter to meet them and learn more about their great achievements. Or email me your stories:

  Patricia M Coleman, President
   Society for Intercultural Education, Training & Research


In This Issue...

Webinar:  March 17

3:00 p.m. EST

Millennials and Generational Competence

Generational Competence? As interculturalists we help individuals and organizations develop their intercultural competence, and now it is time to add generational competence to our work.  For the first time in history, organizations are experiencing up to four generations in the workplace, with Millennials as the largest segment of the workforce. And their numbers are growing. Just like culture, generational differences are real and effect the way we engage and work with others. In this webinar, we will explore generational differences and the role of intercultural competence in developing effective Millennial leaders and strong multi-generational teams.

Tamara Thorpe is the Millennials Mentor. She creates exceptional leadership training programs for Millennial leaders, and helps businesses understand and leverage a multi-generational workforce. She also helps entrepreneurs and growing businesses create engaged and high performing teams, and sustainable learning organizations.

To access the webinar from your computer, tablet or smart phone, go to or dial in on your phone at (US) +1 (646) 749-3122.  The access code is 779-480-573

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Have You Met ICI?

The Institute for Intercultural Communication believes we share an ethical commitment to further intercultural work that contributes to a better understanding and reduced conflict among people of different cultures. In addition to sponsoring intercultural institutes as part of this mission, ICI maintains an extensive research library available year-round for intercultural scholars and practitioners, conducts a graduate degree program and a certificate program, provides referrals and information on intercultural topics, maintains an assessment center, and supports professional activities in the field.

The Winter Institute is a four-day professional development institute that will be held at the Wake Forest University Charlotte Center, March 7-10, 2016. Please see the workshop schedule and descriptions below and register at:


Click here for more information on the
Qatar Institute for Intercultural Communications

Click here for more information on the
Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication

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Speak Freely Like Grandma!
by Maili Brown


The following piece was initially written as an original post for the Nov. 2015 edition of a monthly LinkedIn-based blog and has been expanded for the March 2016 SIETAR USA newsletter.
Nov. 1 marks the first of two, back-to-back Dias de los Muertos (Days of the Dead). It’s a lively holiday celebrated throughout Latin America—and especially Mexico, where it owes its historical roots—that honors the dead and the belief that death is a part of the continuum of life. This year, on the anniversary of my grandma’s transition, I’m delighted to share with you a few lessons about connecting across differences that we learned together.
I called her Gammy. She made “slap-yo-mama” good bread rolls from scratch; had the softest, smooth skin that smelled like Oil of Olay; and talked nonstop without coming up for air. Being “politically correct” (P.C.) was not her thing, and I’m not even sure she would heed the concept if she were aware of it. Gammy had more important things to do—like connecting mind to mind, heart to heart through real conversation. Her non-P.C. modus operandi offered many a chance to ask, listen and learn about what she meant by what she said. Before I departed for travel to India on assignment, she asked if I spoke Indian; Gammy gifted me a pendent in the shape of a Christian cross the first Christmas after I declared as Baha’i; she identified as Colored until the day she died. We did not agree on all of her opinions, though Gammy allowed this difference of perspective to be a point of connectedness between us.
To my colleagues: As we co-create an intercultural society, may we authentically engage between one another as an integral part of our practice. Between my grandma and me, I possessed courage enough to ask, listen and learn with humility. Isn’t it opening ourselves to knowing beyond ourselves that represents both risk and reward in our becoming? In turn, Gammy held the wisdom to encounter our cultural differences with warm reception. She was an unexpected colleague of sorts from whom my professional practice has deepened. In retrospect, I experienced her to be exceptionally able-minded by virtue of the way that she managed her life with Epilepsy; an inspiring forerunner of a woman in the workplace whose legacy rests both in the family she built at home and the hearth she became at the Chicago Public School where she worked; a person over half a century my senior who was more relevant than the technology at my fingertips. Just like grandma and me, what a resource we also have in one another through SIETAR USA that has yet been realized to its full potential.  
We do no one favors when we’re politically correct. When we attempt to be P.C., we retreat from the authenticity of our words by speaking in ways that do not fit our meaning; shrink our minds to conform to the latest trend; disempower ourselves and others by underestimating our intellectual and emotional abilities to respect others and manage dissimilar ideas at the same time. If language reflects mindset, what does your language say about you? Strong people and stronger relationships are made from the way we engage between one another when differences occupy the space between us. 

Speak freely like Gammy, who was never too experienced to open her mind to understand something new—whether or not she accepted it as her truth. She was, however, more charming than most and could say almost anything with her radiant smile! However freely we choose to speak relative to our environment, there is promise in using our own words; owning the impact of those words; and recognizing that how we respond to differences of experience speaks volumes about the power of our minds.
Virtually yours,
Malii Brown
Intercultural Trainer & Consultant
EngageBetween…people. place. purpose.

Malii Brown is an Intercultural Trainer and Consultant working globally and stateside to equip people with skills to manage the complexities and opportunities inherent to work and life in culturally diverse environments. She has 12 years experience training leadership, executives and high potentials—both face-to-face and virtually—to cooperate effectively in the U.S. and/or across national cultures. Her client list includes Fortune 500 companies, institutions of higher learning, state government and nonprofit organizations. Malii offers a unique perspective to the work as a Millennial woman of color who has worked and travelled throughout the U.S. and 19 countries across Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas. She has varying proficiency in Spanish, Japanese and American Sign Language (ASL). Living at times beyond of her “comfort zone”—both outside of, and within, her native U.S. borders—has presented Malii with professional and personal experiences that enable her to relate to, and resonate with, client-partners through cultural self-reflection and discovery. Malii Brown currently lives in Chicago and travels nationally, internationally and virtually for work and pleasure. Connect with Malii at or via LinkedIn.

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SIETAR-USA Annual Conference
November 9-12, 2016 - Tulsa, OK

Conference Theme:
Intercultural Stories of Disconnection:
Insights into the Polarization

of People and Places

TOIT in Krakow Poland

Young SIETAR is hosting its 4th Training of Intercultural Trainers (TOIT) in Krakow, Poland, from March 18-20, 2016.

Our program offers a variety of learning opportunities for Young Professionals and Advanced Interculturalists alike – as well as opportunities to network with other interculturalists from all over the world and enjoy the city of Krakow!
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Does Your Organization
Offer Internships?

Future SIETARIANS would like to know. We've started to compile a list of those organizations that offer internship programs so please let us know by sending your link to
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Watch this space!  We'll start reporting on SIETAR-USA's local groups.  Let us know your future events and other activities and we'll share them here.  Contact

Want to get active locally?  Here's a list of SIETAR-USA's Local Groups:

SIETAR NW;  SIETAR San Francisco Bay Area; SIETAR Florida; SIETAR Washington DC; SIETAR MN

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  Special Thanks to our Sponsors:


Special Sponsors



We Like March Because...

March 20
International Earth Day and the Spring Eqinox

March 25
Good Friday

March 27
Easter Sunday .


Did you know?: 

Women’s History Month is celebrated in March, with International Women’s Day on the 8th.

It is also National Nutrition MonthNational Irish American Heritage Month and American Red Cross Month.


FYI- The Season for Nonviolence is January thru April. ( Let's all dig deep into our heart and choose, peace, harmony vs criticism, judgement and violence.   

Season for Nonviolence was established in 1998 by Arun Ghandi, grandson of Mahatma Ghandi, as a yearly event celebrating the philosophies and lives of Mahatma Ghandi and Martin Luther King Jr.

The “Season” begins with the anniversary of Ghandi’s assassination on Jan. 30, and ends with the anniversary of King’s assassination on April 4.


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