The work of Intercultural Relations is anchored in Georgia State University’s mission statement of educating students to participate in a global economy with individuals different from themselves. To assist students in successfully engaging in this global process, Intercultural Relations provides opportunities for intentional, meaningful programming and dialogue in an effort for students to learn more about themselves and others. Inherent in the success of Intercultural Relations programming is the need for IR to collaborate not only with units inside the Division of Student Affairs but also units and departments within all divisions and colleges across the University.
Definition of Intercultural Relations
Intercultural Relations is viewed as the promotion of cross-cultural interaction, awareness, communication, dialogue, and mutual learning through the integration of engaging activities and programs that allow individuals from various cultures, who may hold different social identities, to engage in meaningful interactions and experiences.
The model used as the foundation for growth and expansion of Intercultural Relations is the Model of Intercultural Maturity developed by King & Baster-Magolda (2005). The Model of Intercultural Maturity provides a framework to address the stages that students navigate through to become interculturally mature individuals. Students who develop intercultural maturity engage in informed, ethical, decision-making when confronted with problems that involve a diversity of perspectives and identities. Interculturally mature citizens have an understanding of cultural differences in ways that enable them to interact effectively with others who may hold different social identities and/or belong to different cultural groups.
“Hatred ever kills, love never dies; such is the vast difference between the two. What is obtained by love is retained for all time. What is obtained by hatred proves a burden in reality for it increases hatred.”
~ M.K. Gandhi