Conversations About Service and Engagement, a program hoping to use videoconferencing to connect IUB to IU's satellite campuses and other campuses around the world, including the University of Southern Denmark and the Hong Kong Polytechnic University, will hold its first conference today. \n"The conference will discuss a myriad of topics through global politics, civic engagement and even how America is viewed through the eyes of the world," said senior Kathleen Claussen, the program's co-facilitator and a Indiana Daily Student staff writer. \nToday's event is the first of four with IU's satellite campuses. IU-South Bend will participate in the event focused on the meaning of civic engagement, "community" and global citizenship.\n"Another focus of ours will be evaluating the amount of engagement, such as voting, volunteering and just being a part of the community in any shape or form, the other students are a part of in the other campuses," Claussen said.\nThe emphasis of this program is involving IU students in the Bloomington community and the surrounding area.\nThe main IU participants in the event are the Global Village, Foster International and Intensive Freshman Seminar, who have been meeting weekly to discuss the policies and activities in the global political arena.\n"They are hearing it from the horse's mouth," said Deb Hutton, outreach coordinator for the Center for the Study of Global Change. "They are connecting with not only students from around Indiana, but eventually the world."\nToday is just a stepping stone to something much larger, Hutton said. The students will be involved in seeing what other countries see and sharing our perceptions of them. \n"We believe people, especially students, need to have their own connections abroad," Hutton said. "This is the best thing next to actually sending the students to the countries that we will be speaking with."\nThrough videoconferencing students can gain knowledge about the views around the state, which can be much different from popular perspectives in Bloomington. \nFor those interested in attending the videoconference and learning more about service learning, the event will occur from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Center for Global Change, 201 N. Indiana Ave., across from the IMU.\nTo find out more check out: www.indiana.edu/~global/case.\nThe numerous benefits of this program will surface in the upcoming months as the students connect with other countries, Hutton said.\n"In the end, they will meet students from 10 countries," she said. "They could all find that they have the same opinion, or they may find it a lot different. I just find it outstanding that we are able to do this."\n-- Contact Staff Writer Ryne Shadday at email@example.com.
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