Academic journal article Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences

Minnesota Embraces the Global World

Academic journal article Journal of Family and Consumer Sciences

Minnesota Embraces the Global World

Article excerpt

The human landscape of Minnesota reflects the current reality of globalization. The regionalization of economies across the Americas, the increased cultural diversity due to immigration, and the technological advances allowing for instant access to information and communication, all contribute to economic, political, environmental, and social interdependencies.

The College of Human Ecology at the University of Minnesota recognized the need to develop a strategic vision that moved from supporting a collection of international activities to embracing a global infusion throughout teaching, research, outreach, and engagement scholarship. For outreach and engagement, this led to the World in Minnesota initiative, focusing on two of the largest immigrant populations in Minnesota, Hmong and Latino. World in Minnesota events gathered community leaders to engage in dialogue and establish priorities.

The Hmong community wanted a focus on supporting access to undergraduate education for their children. This led to increased involvement with University student recruiters on specific outreach efforts in the Hmong community. These connections are beginning to build important relationships with community leaders and families to establish trust and familiarity within the Hmong community.

The global-local interdependence underscores the work launched within the World in Minnesota Latino/a initiative. The Latino population in Minnesota, mainly from Mexico, has grown by more than 166% in the past decade. With a mission to serve Minnesota citizens, Extension's family resource management team had already begun to build relationships and create programs to meet the needs of this rapidly growing population. Partnering with Americorps/VISTA, a bilingual Extension educator was employed to deliver financial education programs in rural communities. …

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