Monday, June 29, 2009

Global Work at the DMV

Do your students tell you, "oh, I don't need to know all that global stuff to get a job. I'm going to work right here in North Carolina"?

Tell them to think again.

Last week I went to the local DMV office to renew my driver's license. (Always a thrill, of course.) While sitting on a hard plastic chair and reviewing the road signs, I saw some significant global interaction.

People from Asia, Europe, and Latin America were in the office to get their North Carolina driver's license. Some were still perfecting their English-speaking skills, or still getting used to living in another country. (And let's all take a minute to think about how we'd feel as we tried to get our license in, say, Brazil.)

The license examiner explained the procedure carefully and helped each person to find the necessary identification in their passports and immigration documents. She was not only professional, but friendly and supportive in serving each customer.

Understanding international bureaucracy. Coping with language challenges. Being sensitive to cultural differences. Our students will need these skills everywhere they work. Tell them about it.

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