AWAC Presents Podcast
Whitney Tilson and Broken Pencil Productions present A Right Denied: The Critical Need for Genuine Education Reform. Education reformer Whitney Tilson gives the most in-depth exploration ever committed to film of the twin achievement gaps that threaten our nation’s future: between the U.S. and our economic competitors, and between low-income, minority students and their more affluent peers. After spending more than two decades on the front lines, witnessing first-hand public education’s shocking failures and remarkable successes, Mr. Tilson was inspired to assemble a powerful and at times unsettling presentation about the twin achievement gaps and what must be done to address them. He utilizes the latest data and research to paint the most detailed portrait of American public education ever committed to film. More importantly, he presents us with a way forward so our nation can deliver on its promise to all of its children and ensure its long-term future.
Hear a partial recording of the panel discussion that followed the film below:
Jim DeHart on “Sex, Drugs and the Rule of Law: Supporting Civil Society and Equal Rights in Afghanistan”
Jim DeHart is the Deputy Assistant Secretary at the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) at the U.S. Department of State. He has been a career Foreign Service Officer since 1993, specializing in political affairs. In July 2013, he completed an assignment as Director of the Office of Afghanistan Affairs. From 2009-2010, he served in Panjshir, Afghanistan as director of the only civilian-led U.S. Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) in the country.
Dr. Yong Zhao is an internationally known scholar, author, and speaker. His works focus on the implications of globalization and technology on education. He has designed schools that cultivate global competence, developed computer games for language learning, and founded research and development institutions to explore innovative education models. He has published over 100 articles and 20 books, including Catching Up or Leading the Way: American Education in the Age of Globalization and World Class Learners: Educating Creative and Entrepreneurial Students.
Douglas M. Johnston is president and founder of the International Center for Religion & Diplomacy. A distinguished graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Dr. Johnston holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from Harvard University and has served in senior positions in both the public and private sectors. Among his government assignments, he was Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy; Director of Policy Planning and Management in the Office of the Secretary of Defense; and planning officer with the President’s Office of Emergency Preparedness. He has taught courses in international security at Harvard and was the founding director of the university’s Executive Program in National and International Security. Dr. Johnston is a Captain in the Naval Reserve and, at the age of 27, was the youngest officer in the navy to qualify for command of a nuclear submarine.
This groundbreaking, controversial documentary film takes an in-depth look at how students in the United States allocate their high school years (approximately four years or two million minutes) compared with India and China. The film forms a picture of the various levels of global education and addresses the implications of these differences on the 21st century global economy. The film was followed by a live panel discussion with a question and answer period.
Dr. Paula J. Dobriansky is a Senior Fellow at Harvard University’s JFK Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and Chair of the National Board of Directors of the World Affairs Councils of America. From 2010-2012, she was Senior Vice President and Global Head of Government and Regulatory Affairs at Thomson Reuters. In this position, she was responsible for designing and implementing corporate strategy in Washington, DC and other key capitals around the globe. During this time, she also held the Distinguished National Security Chair at the U.S. Naval Academy.
Aaron Wolf is a professor of geography in the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences at Oregon State University. He has an M.S. in water resources management (1988, emphasizing hydrogeology) and a Ph.D. in environmental policy analysis (1992, emphasizing dispute resolution) from the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His research focuses on issues relating transboundary water resources to political conflict and cooperation, where his training combining environmental science with dispute resolution theory and practice have been particularly appropriate.
William J. Dobson is the politics & foreign affairs editor for Slate. Previously, he served as the managing editor of Foreign Policy magazine. Dobson is the author of The Dictator’s Learning Curve: Inside the Global Battle for Democracy. Mr. Dobson’s first book, it was selected as one of the “best books of 2012” by Foreign Affairs, the Atlantic, The Sunday Telegraph, and Prospect magazine. The New York Times called it “intelligent and absorbing” and wrote, “Mr. Dobson’s book, with luck, will find its way into the hands of people who aspire to be free.”
The sweet strumming of the ukulele invokes a feeling of island bliss. But one minute of listening to The United Kingdom Ukulele Orchestra will make you realize this isn’t flip-flops music. Punk rock, rock and roll, pop music and oldies – you name it, this octet will play it on their ukuleles. Peter Moss and all the musicians of the United Kingdom Ukulele Orchestra are delighted to be supporters of the children’s project in Israel “Ukeleles for Peace,” which was founded and realized by the music lecturer Paul Moore several years ago together with both Israeli and Palestinian children. A part of the wages of the orchestra will be donated every evening to this award winning reconciliation project, in which kids with the help of music and inexpensive musical instruments discover, together with parents and schools, a way forward throughout this war-torn region.
Ron Tammen is a scholar and professor at the Mark O. Hatfield School of Government. Dr. Tammen specializes in world politics, with particular reference to power relationships among the great powers, present and future. His research currently centers on the emergence of China and then India as potentially dominant nations and the challenge this presents to U.S. foreign and national security policy.
Dr. Radwan Ziadeh is the founder and director of the Damascus Center for Human Rights Studies in Syria and co-founder and executive director of the Syrian Center for Political and Strategic Studies in Washington, D.C. He is the managing editor of the Transitional Justice in the Arab World Project. He is also a member of the Syrian National Preparatory committee for Transitional Justice.
Being of Iraqi origin, Farah Killidar has significant personal and professional interest in Iraq’s legal and political development. She has made presentations in the Middle East, the U.K. and the U.S. on Iraq’s legal system and the foreign investment climate; published articles on the subject; was invited as guest-lecturer at educational institutes; advised corporate and government clients on foreign investment in Iraq and ongoing changes to the legal and political system. When residing in Alaska, Farah acted as the executive director of the Alaska World Affairs Council and, more recently, as an independent legal consultant advising the U.S. Department of Commerce on Iraq’s commercial law development.
The 2014 Alaska Cold War conference brought together veterans, military officials and the public. The following podcast includes the conference’s opening remarks by Lt. Gov. Mead Treadwell, followed by an address from Lt. Gen. Russell Handy, head of Alaska Command.
Join British ambassador to the United States, Sir Peter Westmacott, for a talk on U.K.-Alaska relations hosted by the Alaska World Affairs Council. British tourists make up nearly a third of all foreign visitors to Alaska. “Brits are quite adventurous people, as they were back in Captain Cook’s time,” Westmacott says. They’re also among the world’s top consumers of canned Alaska salmon. Hear Westmacott’s perspective from across the pond on Alaska, the Arctic and more.
Alex Counts founded Grameen Foundation and became its President and CEO in 1997, after having worked in microfinance and poverty reduction for 10 years. A Cornell University graduate, Counts’ commitment to poverty eradication deepened as a Fulbright scholar in Bangladesh, where he witnessed innovative poverty solutions being developed by Grameen Bank. His talk, hosted by the Alaska World Affairs Council, was recorded May 16.
Ambassador Richard Boucher gives a talk called “Who are these guys? Staying ahead of emerging markets.” His presentation was hosted by the Alaska World Affairs Council and was recorded on April 25 at the Anchorage Hilton.
Irish minister Dinny McGinley was recorded speaking on “The Irish Comeback: How Ireland is Meeting the Challenges of its Economic Collapse” on March 27, 2014.
Vice Chancellor for Administrative Service at University of Alaska Fairbanks, Pat Pitney was recorded speaking on ”Making the Golden Connection: An Olympian’s Experience Carrying the Torch on the North Pole” at the Alaska World Affairs Council on December 13, 2013.