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Global U. Global Me. 

A few years ago, I lamented the fact that I had not chosen a global career. Rather, my work as a communication strategist and writer for schools and colleges was firmly entrenched on campuses all over the United States. I've studied abroad and traveled fairly extensively but I wanted more than pleasure trips. I wondered how I might market my expertise to schools and universities abroad but foresaw language barriers and educational systems very different from those in the U.S. 
Then something amazing happened: NYU President John Sexton imagined a "global network university" with "portals" in New York City and Abu Dhabi.   His vision for NYU Abu Dhabi wasn't some study abroad satellite. This was a whole new college -- a liberal arts college -- rising up on Saadiyat Island. In 2009, I was lucky enough to work on the project, helping to brand the new college and craft its story. 
In 2011, I went to Singapore when Yale and the National University of Singapore forged a partnership to launch Yale-NUS College, a new college with a curriculum that reimagines liberal arts from both Eastern and Western perspectives. My job again has been to help frame the story of why this new liberal arts college was founded by two great research universities. 
I often say to the schools that I work with that what I do is look to their history and their aspirations to capture their epic story -- the one that began with their founding and has been unfolding ever since. My goal is to reveal that epic and invite prospective students, parents, donors to see themselves as potential heroes in that story and make it their own. 
Unlike the work I have done for my clients in the U.S. and Canada, the NYU Abu Dhabi and Yale-NUS College projects were startups -- no campus, no current students, no rich lore to turn to for inspiration. Our job was to conjure the dream of what each place could and can be. Nothing is more exciting than to see each of those visions come alive -- to see faculty from all over the world vie to teach at these colleges; to see students from all over the world apply to them.
Now, next week, I will go to Beijing to work on my third global startup. This time, a day and boarding school called Keystone Academy. I plan to blog about the trip so stay tuned. After writing for years about the global world schools need to prepare kids for, it is pretty exciting to be living it.


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