“I want to express my thanks to CAS Trips for a great conference. I didn’t know what to expect, and it was a worthwhile trip for our students and staff. I learned a different approach to service learning and will take the ideas into the classroom next year. I also loved how the resources integrated TOK and will continue investigating this further as I build my new curriculum.”Elizabeth Alwi, CAS and CP SL Coordinator, Teacher of Psychology and TOK, British School Jakarta
We are so proud to be able to offer students from around the world the opportunity to connect, learn, and contribute to global progress. Our Global Student Conferences (GSC) are a highlight of every year, and we are delighted to see how they have developed into not only a platform for students to come together but a realm where academic discourse, service learning, and the power of diversity merge to shape young global citizens.
The 2023 Experience: A Journey of Connections and Learning
As we reflect on the success of the 2023 GSC series, our team agrees that the value of international camaraderie is a significant point worth highlighting. An assemblage of students from around the world converged, forming lasting connections that transcended geographical borders. Serving as a wellspring of newfound friendships, the Singapore, Edinburgh, and Boston conferences were a testament to the power of collaboration and cultural exchange.
“In addition to being so excited to experience Boston and hear all the insight from the guest speakers — one of the most memorable moments for me was having a big campfire and teaching people to make s’mores who never had them before. There were kids from Ecuador, Japan, China, and all around the world. It was so cool to come together and make new friendships while doing something fun that celebrated how food fosters togetherness.”Riley, student attendee
This year also brought a pivotal evolution in the GSC structure, which allowed for a richer conference experience. By incorporating a day trip into the schedule, students were immersed in the local culture, partnering with organizations for impactful service projects. Including a full day in the community provided an avenue to explore, learn, and contribute meaningfully to each destination. A sentiment echoed through all three cities—embrace the Service Day, which enabled students to delve deep into local communities, allowing everyone to interact and engage with local issues in a less formal setting.
Of course — we also spent plenty of time digging into the theoretical foundation of approaches to service and global problem-solving. Another distinctive feature of the 2023 GSC series was its academic focus driven by Theory of Knowledge (TOK) concepts. The conferences kicked off with a spotlight on a significant global issue—the future of food. Participants dissected this topic academically, collaborating to craft project plans that seamlessly transitioned into a CAS project by the journey’s end. The evolution from academic inquiry to practical action was palpable and inspiring, giving teachers and students ideas for enhancing the classroom experience in the coming school year.
A Diverse Array of Voices
As always, central to the GSC experience was a lineup of inspiring speakers who shared their expertise, insights, and passion. A total of ten esteemed experts graced the series, representing diverse backgrounds and perspectives. Their collective wisdom catalyzed meaningful discussions and inspired young minds to envision change.
Our 2023 GSC series proudly hosted an array of voices as we dug into the topic of food, with a significant representation of women sharing their eye-opening experiences and wisdom. In Singapore, four out of the five speakers were women. The Edinburgh conference celebrated an all-female speaker panel, each voice uniquely contributing to the conversation. In Boston, the event hosted a blend of women and LGBTQ+ speakers. Hearing the students’ glowing and engaged responses to the speakers, we could feel the power of amplifying diverse narratives, breaking barriers, and encouraging all voices to be heard.
“We had three amazing speakers with different insights on the food industry. Together, they unveiled some of the corruption and discrimination within the food system — unpacking how various systems interact. I am inspired to bring all these ideas back home and share with my friends.”Samantha, student attendee
The Future Awaits: Stay Tuned for the 2024 GSC
With our Global Student Conferences going forward, we hope to continue facilitating something more than an event. These gatherings are a convergence of minds — a space for global citizens to come together and shape the world for the better.
As we prepare for the 2024 GSC, we invite educators, students, and thought leaders to join us in this exciting journey. Stay connected through our website and social media channels for updates on the 2024 conference, where we will explore global issues, broaden our horizons, and embrace the spirit of collaboration and connection that defines the GSC.