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Conference Connections

14 Sep 2020 12:31 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

Who Are You? & Have You Registered Yet?

Robert Quinn, a brilliant former professor of business at the University of Michigan wrote a book titled, Building the Bridge As You Walk on It: A Guide for Leading Change. In the first chapter he tells the story of a medical director who was speaking to him about several of her amazing leaders. Quinn asked what they do that makes them outstanding. She replied, “It’s not about what they do, it’s about who they are.” As intercultural and DEI professionals we know what we do. At our annual conferences, as SIETARians we have the opportunity to look into ourselves and ask, “Who are we as interculturalists?”

This year has seen many of us digging deeply and personally into the questions of who we are, what we believe and how we use our vast skills in a society riddled with a pandemic, social justice movements, political fighting and everyday struggles. Our 50+ concurrent session presenters have been doing the same, but their deep insights are being shared with us. Beginning with Shelley Morrison’s Pre-Conference workshop sharing tools, tips and techniques for making more engaging online presentations, straight through to our closing keynote by Patricia Malidor Coleman who is going to show us how to “Globalisciousl - Stretch into Change,” you will find Invited Workshops carefully curated to address the issues that we interculturalists are facing right now. In addition, there will be:

  • Opportunities for Practitioners of Color to meet together
  • Time set aside for those who want to address racial justice issues and how they impact SIETAR USA
  • A  world-wide meeting where we will hear from leaders across the globe to discuss how COVID and the racial justice movements are being addressed in their countries
  • Sessions on how to take care of our bodies – mentally, spiritually and even physically
  • Performances by a Morin Khuur (Horse Head Fiddle) player and an extraordinary traditional Mongolian singer.  

We know the SIETAR USA conference is an opportunity to reconnect, network, learn, have fun and hopefully leave being a more skilled practitioner. Yet it can be more. So very much more. For many of us, being an interculturalist isn’t about what we do, it’s who we are. We feel it deep in our bones. It’s not “just a job” but a driving passion, a way of viewing life. Register today for the 2020 SIETAR USA Virtual Conference. Come knowing what you do, leave with a much better and deeper sense of who you are.


Invited workshops are a special group of interactive workshops. These presenters are invited because of the deep expertise they combine with excellence in creating engaging, interactive, topical workshops. When the SIETAR USA conference is in-person, there is an extra fee for these sessions (called Master Workshops). Not this year! They are all included in your registration fee. Invited Workshops bring you the best of the best. You will not want to miss them. 

"Mindfulness Practice for Intercultural and DEI Practitioners"

One of the key skills for being an effective interculturalist is the ability to “notice.” Whether being aware of our own behaviors, beliefs and assumptions or assisting others in increasing their awareness, “mindfulness” cannot be underrated. Rita Wuebbler, one of the most in-demand practitioners/presenters at SIETARs throughout the world, will start SIETAR USA’s conference with a highly interactive session exploring mindfulness and how it can be used personally and in our work as interculturalists.


  • Rita Wuebbler, President, Interglobe Cross-Cultural Business Services, Inc.

“Community Organizing, COVID-19 and Black Lives Matter: One Minneapolis Neighborhood's Efforts to Speak Up and Keep the Peace”

We’ve seen the horrific shooting of Black men and women and watched the protests that have followed. Perhaps we’ve even marched in some. Have you ever wondered, however, “What if this was my neighborhood? What would I do?”  Basma and Jon didn’t need to wonder because it was their neighborhood. Learn from their compelling story of what happened as they and their neighbors struggled with how to remain safe from COVID-19 and heal the wounds in their neighborhood while still participating in social justice action protesting the deaths of yet another Black man by police.


  • Basma Ibrahim DeVries, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Communication Studies, Concordia University
  • Jon DeVries, Trainer & Consultant in Intercultural Competence, Team Building & Leadership Development

"Mind, Mindfulness & the 3rd Pandemic of Mental Health"

One of the arguments for reopening schools while we’re still in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis is that children need to be with their friends. But it’s not just the children who are suffering from the isolation of this world-wide pandemic. Depression and other mental health issues appear to be skyrocketing in adults due to COVID-19 and its effects on all aspects of our lives.  Dr. Mai Nguyen, standing-room-only presenter at last year’s conference in Atlanta, will engage us in a lively and accessible discussion of how our brains operate and how mindfulness can actually change the way our brains function.


  • Dr. Mai Nguyen, Associate Professor, Amsterdam University of Applied Science

"Identifying & Developing Inclusive Behaviors: A Case Study with Assessments & Learning Interventions"

If asked, could you identify what an inclusive behavior looks like? What it means to be interculturally competent? What are the links between the two? Can you identify them in your clients? Do you know how to design interventions for your clients based upon inclusion and cultural competence? If you are struggling with any of these questions or merely want to increase the effectiveness of your next client involvement, you will want to attend this workshop. Chris and Brett will walk us through techniques for answering these questions, assessing your client needs and then deciding upon proper intervention strategies.


  • Chris Cartwright, MPA, Ed.D., associate w/ Aperian Global, CLI, icEdge, and The Kozai Group
  • Brett Parry, Founder, The Cultural Mentor

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