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Celebrate cultural diversity, connect locally and globally!

“Things could not be going any better with [my conversation partner]. What a great match! We meet twice a week to converse, shop, or read […] She is such a sweet lady and I love meeting with her. She comes to our meeting with a lot of practical questions about the world around her [… ] Our relationship is quickly developing into a friendship. What a rewarding experience. Thanks for the opportunity!”

– An American volunteer on the Conversation Partners Program

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“Having a teacher like [my English Language Class teacher] makes me feel stable. She is reliable, kind, and warm. [My class] helped me a lot to adjust here.”

– An international student on her English Language Class

“My most recent Conversation Partner returned [home] last month. Over the past year we became very good friends, and our families did holidays together. It was great to see her learn so much—English and culture. Our relationship evolved from one hour per week speaking English to whole afternoons of eating together, going shopping, explaining the presidential election, etc. She and her family made an amazing amount of progress, and we were all sad that they had to return to their “real lives” in [her home city].”

— An English native-speaker on her experience with the Conversation Partners Program

IFP Halloween Party 2013
Ephraim from Zimbabwe with students

“I have invited Global Connections volunteers to visit my Spanish classes each year for the past three years. The interaction with someone native to a Spanish-speaking country gives my students an experience difficult to provide otherwise in a community with few Spanish-speakers. They learn firsthand about some of the history, culture, traditions, and social issues in the volunteer’s native country, which is very different from reading about it in a book or seeing it in a video. The volunteers help the information to come alive.”

– A high school teacher in State College on the International Speakers Program

“I think [my partner] feels a bit more sure of himself with conversational English. I have also enjoyed meeting his wife and child at our home when they came for dinner. I also invited them to join me for the South Korean [Cultural] Luncheon. [The Conversation Partners Program] has been an excellent experience. “

— An English native-speaker on her experience with the Conversation Partners Program

International Friendship Picnic 2011
A 2015 Conversation and Crafts Group gathers to showcase their artwork.

“Yesterday, I had so great time at the Crafts class. It’s was so wonderful that I could talk with many people who was born in the other countries. Also I enjoyed making the Christmas wreath. After I get home, I could complete the wreath. I felt so happy. I look forward to taking part in the class next time.”

– An international spouse from Japan on the Conversation and Crafts Group

“[Cultural Luncheons are] a very good opportunity to share things and cultures from so many countries. […] It was an amazing experience.”

– A volunteer chef for a Cultural Luncheon

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