As the summer comes to a close, the thought of returning to campus or coming to campus for the first time is probably keeping some of you up at night. I hope you were able to find some time to follow along with current events in recent months. This is a fascinating time in human history. As students of interdisciplinary study, you are emerging at a time when the world’s complexities are arguably more transparent than ever before.
Politics and ideology contribute to ongoing tensions in different parts of the world including the Middle East, Sub-Saharan Africa, and here in the US. With globalization, past adversaries from the Cold War are now engaged in complicated economic and military partnerships. Regardless of differences in ideology or perspectives on human rights, the US will continue tricky, but important relationships with countries like China and Russia. That is the way our world works.
This is a slither of the kinds of discussions that you can explore today in International and Area Studies. Whether it is questions related to global migration, economic justice (or injustice), limited natural resources, emerging cultural identities, or new opportunities for business growth, this is a great time to be a student of International Studies or International Business. It is a great opportunity to grasp old ideas and develop new perspectives on how to understand the world you are inheriting. It is through your understanding, that you will find innovative ways to contribute to its preservation.