edmund

About Edmund Cluett

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July 20, 2017

Jeanette S. Pedersen (’02 – ’04)

July 20th, 2017|

Although I graduated from the United World College Red Cross Nordic (UWCRCN) over a decade ago, I still think of my two years in Flekke often and refer to them as the best two years of my life. It was during these two years that I not only learned a lot about myself, including my core values and passions, but also about the world. I am grateful to have lived and learned with other young people from across the world and different social, economic and cultural backgrounds at such a tender age. Not surprisingly, my two years in Flekke have had a huge impact on who I am today, and the choices that I have made.

When I graduated from UWCRCN on a sunny spring day in May 2004, I was not exactly sure what career path I wanted to take, so I was thrilled to do a UWCRCN supported Third Year Option Project that allowed me to volunteer at a school and hostel for children in rural India for several months followed by travelling around the world. I felt a keen sense of wanting to contribute to making the world a better place after having lived a life of plenty of opportunities growing up in northern Europe. When I reflect back on my time with the excited and curious kids I was fortunate to meet, I am certain they taught me more than I ever taught them.

After a year of learning, growing and exploring, I moved across the world to study Sociology and Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada. Resisting the urge to select a program that had a clearly identifiable career outcome, I decided to learn more about how society and the world we live in shape the health of individuals and communities. In my final year, I found myself as an intern at an Indigenous community health centre in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside – one of the poorest neighbourhoods in Canada. There a dedicated Family Physician and advocate showed me the many possibilities for promoting social change as a Family Physician, as he tirelessly helped and advocated for patients whose lives were complicated by poverty, homelessness, complex medical conditions, addiction, and trauma. I remember clearly the day when I decided: “I want to do what he does!”

My path in medicine has not always been linear or easy, but it has been guided by my core values, which has always provided me with a sense of purpose and being “at home”. It is this “at home” feeling, which I can take with me wherever I go on my journey, which is one of the greatest gifts that the UWCRCN experience has given me.

Jeanette S. Pedersen is half Danish and half Thai. She lives in Vancouver, Canada, with her husband. She completed her medical school training at the University of Calgary, Canada, and is currently a Family Medicine Resident at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. She considers herself fortunate to be training at St. Paul’s Hospital and in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside – the community that inspired her to become a Physician.

For profiles and news of other students and alumni, click here.

June 29, 2017

Give an Opportunity

June 29th, 2017|

At the heart of the education we provide is deliberate diversity. In line with this, our fundraising priority is provision for support for a Foundation Year for those from conflict / refugee backgrounds who are unable to complete the IB programme in two years due to either disrupted learning or language difficulties.

Our target is to raise the annual cost of a Foundation Programme place which is 300,000 NOK per student per year.
The closing date for the appeal is 23rd August, 2017.
See how we are doing, here.

Born twice – Hari’s story.

Hari Bahadur Tamang

Hari Bahadur Tamang

Hari Bahadur Tamang says he was born twice. As soon as he was born, he faced challenges. From a small village in Chitwan in southern Nepal, he had 11 siblings, and his parents were poor, and could not look after all the children properly, so all of them were sent out to work at a very young age. Hari went to work as a dishwasher in a hotel 10 hours from his village. He was 7 years old. One day a bus he was traveling on was caught by a bomb blast, and 53 people lost their lives. Hari was one of the 71 people who survived.

After this traumatic experience Hari’s perspectives changed. He was lucky to be alive, and he knew it. He appreciated life and was fortunate to gain supporters – individuals and organisations who provided him with a small amount of financial relief and work opportunities in homes and on a farm. He went to school again, but when his mother passed away in 2007, he returned home to look after his father. Eventually, thanks to the support of a sponsor, Hari applied for a UWC scholarship, and with the assistance of the Nepalese National Committee he was accepted to the Survivors of Conflict programme at RCN – a programme which the College runs in tandem with the Red Cross and the Rehabilitation Centre on our campus.

Receiving an RCN scholarship filled Hari with hope and excitement. Finally, he thought, he could just focus on his education and take control of his future. However, coming to a new country and the RCN community brought new challenges. English was the most difficult problem of all. In the beginning, everything was hard, but gradually, Hari relaxed, and the friendly, supportive RCN environment brought out his natural friendliness and curiosity. He realized that RCN is not just about academics and started participating in activities such as Norwegian folk dancing and sports.

The Foundation Year Programme is making a huge difference in his life, he explains. He is getting familiar with the IB Programme, the UWC movement, the Red Cross and the RCN community. He is becoming more confident and feels he is receiving a great deal of moral support. He is building his foundation to tackle not only the IB, but also other challenges. With smaller class sizes and a special focus on developing both basic and academic English, he feels well supported and motivated. His language skills are going from strength to strength, and his days have become much easier.

“My life has been challenging, but these challenges have taught me to never give up, to have hope, ask for help, grab opportunities and work harder.”

Please support those who need this opportunity.

The UWC Davis Impact Challenge will match each contribution and thereby double it. Your participation is more important than the size of the donation.

   

Vipps to 110433

 

UWC RCN provides an education that serves peace. Students enter with inspiration and graduate empowered to make positive change in their own contexts. Many return to us to tell how their years in Flekke transformed them. Our supporters can tell you about the satisfaction of knowing they helped develop the kind of compassionate leaders the world needs. These donations help us work with others to shape a better future.

For more information about the Foundation Programme, click here.

To contact us please email: campaign2017@rcnuwc.no

RCN Delegation Visit to Åland

June 29th, 2017|

The RCN delegation of Arne, Lisa, Kathini, Poppy and Larry met at Bagarstugan with alumni and some of the founding team (Kjell Nilsson and Leif Jansson) of the partnership between UWC Red Cross Nordic and Åland. We had 6 alumni present including the very first student from Åland at the College and Leonardo (Italy) who has a summer job with the Ålandic Red Cross and is currently studying at the University of Uppsala, Sweden.

Our programme was coordinated by Wille Walve (RCN alumnus, Minister of Social Affairs and Health for the Government of Åland, former RCN Board member, and former Head of the Åland delegation to the Nordic Council).

Wille also set up a meeting with the Government including the Premier Mrs Katrin Sjøgren – and this provided us with the opportunity to present the College and Åland’s special place within our Nordic cooperation. Åland is a home-ruled, demilitarized and Swedish-speaking territory belonging to Finland and a member of the European Union since 1995 – and we are delighted that it continues to be a partner of our College.

UWC Learning Support

June 28th, 2017|

From 21-23 June staff from 13 UWCs met at UWC Atlantic to consider how to improve support for those students who come to us from non-Engish-speaking backgrounds. The conference, which was organised by staff at UWC Maastricht and UWC Atlantic, brought us together to identify and share good practice, identify areas in need of development, and work towards creating a unified action plan to establish solid support structures across the UWC movement and in our individual contexts. The conference was opened by Peter Howe, the new Head of UWC Atlantic, and the keynote speaker, Dr. Marco Tamburelli, a Senior lecturer in Bilingualism at the University of Bangor, Wales, led to us to consider the importance of actively encouraging mother-tongue use on our campuses. Two days of intense conversations gave us all much to think about and take back to our communities. It was stimulating and nourishing to learn from each other and to engage with others who “spoke the same language”. The support for those learning English needs to go hand-in-hand with the pastoral support systems and we hope that the next conference can include staff involved with both areas of UWC life. With the help of our newly formed network and a UWC Hub group space where we can share materials and ideas, we look forward to improving the support we offer to all students, not just those who are learning English.