Accommodating multiple languages for law and policy creation

In our ever increasingly diverse society, I think that it would be foolish to have english only laws. There are several projections that have been made that in 20-30 years the minority groups in the US will become the majority. With that rapid growth in mind, it would be a good idea to accommodate other languages in the law making process. Having laws that accommodate multiple languages, will in process, accommodate multiple minority groups in the US. By having laws in the US that accommodate multiple languages, the US would also send a message that we are embracing the cultures that use those languages. On a multicultural and intercultural communication standpoint, having laws that would accommodate multiple languages would be extremely beneficial to the US.

For my service learning I have signed on with the Asian Association of Utah to be an ESL tutor once a week. I have not started my service yet because we are still waiting for the background check to come through. I will start as soon as I hear back from them.

Empathy and its bridge to intercultural awareness

The past couple of weeks as we have studied about different approaches to intercultural communication and various theories on how to communicate effectively with groups and individuals of other cultures, I was particularly struck with the section in chapter 3 about the Integrated Model of Intercultural Communication Competence. As I read this section what stood out the most to me was the following line,”As the model depicts, even if someone is not well traveled or formally trained in intercultural communication, that person may still be perceived as a competent intercultural communicator if empathetic and a good listener–key variables identified in the IMICC” (Kurylo, 2013). Though the text specifies that you are perceived as competent if you are empathetic and an active listener, I believe that those are the variables that will influence your competence the most. From my own experience, I had the opportunity to serve in a refugee community for almost six months on my LDS mission. Day after day I interacted with people from Rwanda, Burundi and Angola. I did not speak french at first and was not very motivated to communicate with them because the language was difficult for me and I knew I would be leaving in a relatively short amount of time. However, I started to learn more about their experiences and their culture as my companion or missionary partner would translate our interactions into english. I started to learn how much these people had sacrificed to come to America. I started to think more empathetically and put myself in their shoes, then, all of the sudden every thing changed. Because I realized how much they had gone through and how difficult their lives had been, I wanted to do everything in my power to learn how to communicate with them. Because I was empathetic towards them, I was more motivated to talk to them and listen to them and learn their language. By the end of my time in Portland, Maine, I did not want to leave because I had created lasting friendships with each of amazing individuals I got to work with.

In relation to the Babakieuria movie, my eyes were opened again to the power of empathy. The movie was designed to have you figuratively walk in a minority’s shoes and realize how different their lives are from majority groups. It made me realize that their are several minority groups that I associate with that I need to take the time to live in their shoes.

Overall the past couple of weeks have been very eye-opening and I have learned a lot about myself in the process.

Awakening

Hey Y’all. I’m going to be straight up with you and be fully transparent with this post. I started this class with what chapter one calls a,”economic imperative” for learning more about inter/cultural communication. I knew that it would benefit me in the future in my business interactions. I am going into HR and a part of my future career will delve heavily into inclusivity and diversity. So at first I felt like I was doing this for selfish reasons. However in just the past couple of weeks from reading the chapters and going to class I have realized that my paradigm or view of intercultural communication is shifting and I am motivated to learn more about it because I see the value in using what I learn in this class to become a more ethical US and world citizen. I am also more motivated to learn in this class to help promote peace in our society that desperately needs someone to advocate and understand and communicate competently with other cultures. I would say that that is the biggest “take aways” I have from our reading from chapter 1 and 2.

So I am from Draper Utah and I come from a LDS background. I served a mission in the New Hampshire Manchester Mission and I am now a junior here at UVU studying speech comm with a minor in HR. I have been married for just over a year now to my amazing wife. I look forward to getting to know all of you more.