Saturday, January 9, 2016

Info@sarasota Sister Cities (3) January 7, 2016

Unlike the New York Times, this is SOME of the news that’s fit to print….
 
DUES RENEWAL, LAST CALL
          The 3rd and last dues renewal notice will be sent in the next few days.  “Bring thee all the tithes into the storehouse!”  We want you with us in the coming year!
 
UPDATE ON CRUMBLING SISTER CITY PLAQUES IN BAYFRONT PARK 
          Todd Kucharski, Manager of Public Works for Sarasota, has agreed to have the city realign & reposition all the tree plaques at their cost. SCAS can also have new signage on posts at the two ends of the walk, listing our sister cites with our mission & goals. SSCA will need to cover the cost of the new signage and the replacement plaque for Vladimir. 
          Ray Young met with the Artisan sign company and they have prepared a prototype of the new signage, which he will send to the board for approval next week. Artisan will produce the signage & plaque and do all the installation.  We will also have an expert cleaning of all the plaques.  Stay tuned for further updates.
 
A TALENTED SISTER CITIES MEMBER YOU MAY NOT KNOW:  DR. JOSE TORRES
          Our faithful member Dr. José Torres was one of ten foreign experts in Xiamen awarded the Egret Friendship Award in 2015.  This award is given every two years to foreigners who make outstanding contributions to China’s economic and social progress.
          The Egret Award has been given to just 48 foreign experts since 2004, mainly from the U.S., Canada, Japan, Russia, Singapore, and Malaysia.
          Even though Dr.. Torres’s legal address is Little Elm, Texas, and he is working abroad most of the time, he maintains his membership with SCAS and friendship with Sarasota, and he updates us on his efforts periodically.
          Dr. Torres is a Keuka College (New York) professor who has taught marketing, international business law, organizational behavior, leadership, and strategic management for the last six years at Jimei University in Xiamen, China.  Jimei U is approximately the same size as Xiamen University. He also teaches on occasion at Vietnam National University in Hanoi.
          Great work, José Torres! 
 
SISTER CITIES UNITED YOUTH
          Morgan Bortz, the CYD representative who serves on SCAS’s Board, has been working with our VP of Education Ray Young and other local students to create a forum where local high school students would connect with students from our Sister Cities in order to share their  unique culture,  experiences and form lasting friendships.
          They plan to have monthly Skype conversations with the foreign students.  At the beginning of each month, to stimulate conversation, questions would be distributed to participating students in our Sister Cities.  At the end of the month, after time for reflection, they would discuss the question with each other via Skype.
          At the end of the first year, the experience would be evaluated.  There would also be an attempt to find a way for all the students to meet face-to-face.  The logistics of finding students in our Sister Cities around the world, creating the multi-person Skype session across time zones, and asking thoughtful but culturally sensitive questions will add to the learning experience.