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Transcending Cultures: the trifles of internationals at Willamette »

Greetings,

The topic for the next issue was given to us by one of Willamette’s anthropology professors, Professor Vandehey and gives us insight into the experiences of international at Willamette.

As international students, you have undoubtedly encountered and experienced many situations on campus that seem shocking, inexplicable, odd, or even funny. Take a moment to reflect on a time or place that initially seemed quite foreign to you. Describe the situation and reflect on your initial reaction to the cross-cultural experience. How did you initially understand what you were experiencing? Has your understanding changed over time as you have become increasingly enculturated at Willamette?

We hope you get a chance to enjoy these articles amidst finals and the holidays!

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Lara, Rachel, and Brie

The WWN Editorial Team

/!\Please note: the statement made in these articles do not reflect the view of Willamette University or the countries of the respective contributors./!\

A Mexican/American experience as an international student »

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By Kassandra Saltos

When I first decided to come to United States to be part of an exchange program, I did not think that I would have much culture shock since I believed I was well aware of American culture. When I started school here I was honestly really nervous about making friends, living with a roommate, and taking full English classes, but as my international orientation days began, I felt more confident about being here–I was really excited. Read the rest

Taking a Step Back While Moving Forward »

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By Gesa Musiol

History is never objective. The act of recording events, in writing, audio, visual form, or film always presents a certain version thereof by choosing what to focus on, what to leave out, and which words to use. The knowledge of the fact that history is mostly written by the survivors, the winners, and the ones with the loudest voices is widely spread. Nevertheless, the way history is taught differs significantly from country to country as I experienced here at Willamette University. Read the rest

(Building Community) Hours »

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By Lucía Baigorrí Haüen

It is quite common to say that much of non-Americans’ knowledge of the United States is (mis)informed by mass media products, however that does not make it any less true. In my case, the entertainment industry has been a great source of education that has shaped much of my understanding of American life in general and the college experience in particular (J.J. Abram’s Felicity being at the top of my reference list). It is for this reason that seeing dorms, dining halls, university apparel, and a dancing bearcat during my first days at Willamette did not take much getting used to. Read the rest

What Makes Willamette Weird »

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By Emmanuelle Schopp

This year working as a language assistant for French at Willamette University is actually my first time on a campus outside of my country, France. This new experience is very interesting, enriching, surprising, and fun, but also at the same time sometimes rather “weird” and challenging because it is so different from what I am used to back home. I cannot say that there is one thing in particular that seemed shocking to me, but rather that there have been several little things that have appeared unfamiliar to me and even sometimes rather incomprehensible.

Read the rest

Living in Two Cultures »

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By Guadalupe Torres

As a Chicana I practice the Mexican culture but I have also been exposed to the United States’ culture and have encountered several differences that have been a shock to me. These differences have been difficult to grasp because it can be said that I am living in two different worlds. Read the rest

A Moroccan In A Bistro »

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By Sofia El Otmani

When I first arrived at Willamette University, one of the first buildings that I visited was the Putnam University Center and the Bistro inside of it. I still remember the way the Willamette students first described the Bistro upon my arrival: the Bistro is warm, comfortable, and instills a wide variety of relaxing emotions. Read the rest

“Wie, du hast noch kein Hauptfach…???” »

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By Anne Schwobe

Before coming to Willamette, I was really excited to go back to the States since I had already lived abroad for a year and a half. Therefore, I thought I would be sort of prepared for most cultural differences. I was excited to come back, enjoy free refills, yummy brownies, and meet lots of welcoming people. Thank you Willamette for exceeding my expectations. :) Read the rest

Cross-Cultural Experience »

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By Shotaro Kumano

1. Opening the door for the next person:
People on this campus always pause to open the door for next person. In Japan, sometimes people do this, but not so kindly. I think one of the reasons for this is because Japan has automatic doors everywhere. So, we don’t get the chance to open the door in general. Since experiencing this custom, I now open the door considerately even in Japan. Read the rest

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International Stories Untold in the American Media »

Greetings,

Thank you for checking out our first issue of the semester!

We realize that many very important and relevant issues around the world are being misrepresented or simply not publicized in the American news. In this issue, we gave our contributors an opportunity to find a news article from their nation that highlights one such issue and give us their perspective on the issue. We encourage all readers to comment on the articles with any feedback they may have, whether it be in the form of opinions or questions to the author. Hopefully this will help us make this a more interactive experience and keep us more educated on the happenings in the world around us!

This year we are also transitioning the WWN into a multimedia publication with video introductions to the articles and our first-ever paper companion issue coming to Willamette’s campus soon!

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Have a good read!

Lara, Rachel, and Brie

The WWN Editorial Team

/!\Please note: the statement made in these articles do not reflect the view of Willamette University or the countries of the respective contributors./!\

Myth of the American Dream »

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By Guadalupe Torres

My name is Guadalupe Torres, I was born in California and I also recently graduated from Willamette University with two majors: Spanish and Latin American Studies. Even though I was born in the United States I am proud to say that my first language is Spanish and my cultural background is Mexican. Read the rest

Diana »

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By Lucía Baigorrí Haüen

Ten years ago, terms such as “femicide” and “gender violence” were not part of Argentine mainstream media and were definitely not featured in everyday discourse. Now, in a time when reality is pervasively mediated by virtual experiences on social media, channels for denouncement, protest, and discussion are open to practically everyone. On the one hand, this allows for the advancement of people’s education on issues such as identity, gender equality, and the many facets of violence. Read the rest

Morocco: The First Constitutional Monarchy of the Arab World »

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By Sofia El Otmani

After crossing half of the world to be in Willamette University, I have discovered that being the only Moroccan here is a unique and very interesting experience. Not only do I get to see the surprise and amazement of people when I describe how it is to be from Morocco, but I also get to share the image of my country through my own eyes’ perception.

Read the rest

The Despair of the 43 Students from a Mexican Point of View »

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By Kassandra Saltos

As the article, “One year ago, 43 Mexican students were killed. Still, there are no answers for their families,” points out, it has already been a year since 43 innocent students disappeared and neither the parents nor the entire concerned society has received any certain news about what happened to them. It has been kept as a very badly covered secret and rumor has it (but we most certainly know), that they were kidnapped and probably tortured, murdered, and/or disappeared by the government.

Read the rest

The Calais “Jungle” Needs Help! »

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By Emmanuelle Schopp

I am Emmanuelle and I’m the French language assistant at Willamette this year. For my first contribution to the WWN, I would like to tell you a bit more about my country, France, and what is currently happening there. I have thus decided to talk about the refugees’ terrible living conditions in the Calais “Jungle,” in France, as well as the way the French government and several humanitarian organizations (NGOs) are dealing with it. Read the rest

Können wir das schaffen?? Jo, wir schaffen das! »

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By Anne Schwobe

Dear WWN readers,

My name is Anne Schwobe and I am working as the German Language Assistant at Willamette this year. I am happy to share some important news from my home country with you and I hope you enjoy reading it. For the first entry I chose a very current and important topic, the “refugee/migrant crisis.” Read the rest

The Wild and Wonderful World of Japanese Vending Machines »

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By Shotaro Kumano

In Japan, trend and culture have been changing quickly. Convenience machines, or vending machines have also been evolving. There are vending machines everywhere in Japan. As you can see in the article, “The Wild and Wonderful World of Japanese Vending Machines,” vending machines are essential for people in Japan, and not just to buy a drink but also for people to be safe and stay happy. Their existence is very important and should be spread to the world! Read the rest

SPRING 2015 »

Fears and Phobias »

students-2-266x300Greetings,

In this issue, our contributors write about their fears and phobias.

Have a good read!

Lara, Hailee, and Jordan

The WWN Editorial Team

/!\Please note: the statement made in these articles do not reflect the view of Willamette University or the countries of the respective contributors./!\

Are You Afraid of the Dar… of the Ballot Box ? »

One of my passions in life–after eating cereals all day long on Sundays–is watching trailers. They are, I think, the best part of the movies themselves. In no time, they have to convince you to jump off your sofa and run to the movie theater. I believe that the more plausible the feelings delivered, the more likely you are to watch the complete version. Read the rest

Education Systems »

students-2-266x300Greetings,

In this issue, our contributors write about differences in the education systems in their nations.

Have a good read!

Lara, Hailee, and Jordan

The WWN Editorial Team

/!\Please note: the statement made in these articles do not reflect the view of Willamette University or the countries of the respective contributors./!\

The German Education System and the “Children’s Garden” »

What is there to know about the education system in Germany? A lot and it’s also quite complicated.
The public school system in Germany is more extensive than in other countries and there are many fewer private and parochial schools. Some alternative educational models, such as Waldorf and Montessori, are also integrated and a valid choice for parents. Read the rest

The Educational System in Argentina: Differences, Similarities and the Challenges Ahead »

The educational system in my home country is at times very different from the American system but there are still some similarities… In order to give you a general picture, I will include the briefing I found in the EducationUSA website which may be of great help. Read the rest