Global studies club strives to make students world-aware

Marleen Rodriguez

Marleen Rodriguez

Every day students hear coverage of poverty stricken countries and global climate change concerns, but do they really know the implications of these issues? Reading groups, discussions and movies nights sponsored by the SDSU Global Studies Club could help inform members and the student body of these global topics.

The idea to start a club was proposed by Nels H. Granholm, professor of Global Studies, to students interested in doing something with value. The club, which initially formed last year and was formally recognized by the Students’ Association on Feb. 9, is a proactive service-oriented group with a focus in raising global awareness and advocating for global justice and equity in regards to social and environmental causes.

“If people knew what was really going on [in the world], if they had a sense of injustice, they would know what to do,” he said.

Granholm’s broad interest in the world and belief that people need to become authentic global citizens has become the basis for his courses and part of the foundation of the Global Studies Club.

“Global Studies is multidisciplinary based”, said Granholm. “It fits in so well with so many other majors.”

Despite its recently established status, a range of potential activities already fills the club’s agenda. The president of the club, Suzanne Roth, a triple major in global studies, biology and microbiology, has been working hard on creating an interactive environment for students who are very passionate about global issues and want to get together after classes. Included in the scope of possibilities is the plan to join a United Nations organization, along with forming on-campus reading groups that would discuss books with relevance to global matters.

“We want to foster open forum discussions to promote awareness on a variety of topics,” said Roth, a native from Sioux Falls who graduates this May. Topics range from national poverty to environmental concerns, such as global warming.

Among some of the goals, the club sees the importance of helping students find employment in the global studies field.

“Dr. Granholm recognized the need to bring students together to give them ideas for future careers,” said Roth.

“I can greatly benefit from this club. The Global Studies program has made me realize how interconnected the world is and the impact that our personal involvement in global causes can have,” said Bianca Rodriguez, 23, a junor global studies major. “In the same sense, it would be beneficial for me to join, not only so that I can contribute, but I’m sure it would open my eyes to the wide-ranging career possibilities.”

Additional club goals include supporting SDSU organizations, as well as other regional organizations that are conducting global citizenship-related activities, sponsoring informational speakers, working with the International Affairs Office, organizing movie nights, sponsoring a trip abroad, hosting workshops on global citizenry and working to secure funding for scholarships for Global Studies students.

The club is composed of approximately 45 members. Meetings are still tentative, but more information will soon be advertised on flyers across campus. Otherwise, SDSU students can get additional information by checking out the Global Studies Club’s Facebook group or by meeting with club members during the Festival of Cultures on April 3 at the Global Studies Club booth. Club representatives include Suzanne Roth, president, Trifon Theodosopoulos, secretary, Shay Sorlie, treasurer and Karl Schmidt, co-adviser.