Students and faculty members will pack up their flashlights and sleeping bags and head to the mountains for the 24th annual Teamwork Leadership retreat from Oct. 6 to 8 at YMCA Camp Arbolado in the San Bernardino National Forest. The theme for this year’s weekend trip will be “Cross-Cultural Communication.”
“It is a weekend for students to get away, where they can learn about leadership and have fun doing it,” said Miles Nevin, coordinator for Student Life & Development.
According to Nevin, through the programs and activities during the weekend, students should learn to identify with their own cultural heritage, promote understanding of the role between cultures and communication and develop practical skills for effective and ethical cross-cultural communication.
In addition to learning to communicate effectively between different cultures, skills in leadership roles will also be practiced. Nevin said the trip is open to any student who wishes to register, and cultural diversity in participants would help create diversity in the input and the learning processes of the activities.
Director of Student Life & Development Jeff Klaus said the team started out with the outcomes it was hoping for and then developed programs to lead to this end. He described a number of activities that involve simulations of cultural obstacles that will allow participants to assume the identities of people belonging to certain cultures and create their own cultures and make decisions among the groups applying the different thoughts and experiences in cultural life. This way, students will be able to experience the lessons in an outdoor environment instead of hearing them in a lecture.
In order to provide a wide range of knowledge base, a staff has been put together to include faculty and students from many different departments on campus. The staff of this year’s trip includes professors from the Asian and Asian-American studies department, communication studies, the music department, an international student, a psychologist, members of Student Life & Development, International Student Services and other cultural groups on campus.
Various departments on campus helped sponsor the trip, including Student Life & Development, ASI, the 49er Shops and the Leadership Resource Center.
“I believe it will truly be a dynamic weekend,” Klaus said. He described the goal of identifying obstacles in effective cross-cultural communication and finding a strategy to defeat such obstacles.
The deadline to register for the weekend getaway will be Friday, Sept. 29. There is a $40 fee that will cover five meals, snacks, two nights lodging, transportation and materials. The fee can be paid in cash or by money order.
Registration forms can be printed online or picked up in the office of Student Life & Development, USU Room 206. Participants must register in person at the SLD office.
Due to the space limitations in transportation, only 100 students are able to sign up for the event, and 75 spaces have already been taken. Information about the trip and the registration form can be found at the Student Life & Development section of the CSULB Web site.