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Garfield Scholars to Study Globalization in Panama for Spring Break

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Hiram College’s Garfield Scholars will be spending their spring break sitting on a beach – and talking politics.

The Garfield Center for Public Leadership will be traveling to Panama from March 11-15, 2014 to study the topic of “Panama and Globalization.”

“I want the students to get a first-hand sense of the impact of globalization on the making of a country’s public policy,” said James Thompson, assistant professor of political science and director of the Garfield Center for Public Leadership. “In Panama, the impact of globalization is so pervasive that it provides a laboratory, of sorts, for examining this topic.”

The Garfield Scholars are a select group of students of across majors who work closely with the Center and its programming and regularly interact with public leaders and study public policy.

Each Scholar has already selected a topic relating to “Panama and Globalization” to study, such as how globalization affects higher education or how it has impacted Panama’s international relations. Over the span of the trip, the Scholars will study their topics in-depth by meeting with high profile Panamanians, listening to presentations and exploring the country.

On the their first full day in Panama, the Garfield Scholars will be meeting with Hiram alumnus Eduardo Enrique Morgan ’84 and his family, who run the Morgan and Morgan Group (MMG). The Morgans and the Scholars will come together in the new MMG Tower to kick off their topic discussion.

The next day, the group will be visiting the Ciudad del Saber, or the City of Knowledge. This was a former military base that the Morgans converted into a center for international studies and offices for international organizations.

There, the Garfield Scholars will attend several presentations about the Panamanian economy and global market, and then the group will visit the Water Research Center for Humid Tropics to learn about climate change and policy issues.

On the final full day of their trip, the scholars will travel to the San Blas Islands for a little down time, but more importantly, to have a closing discussion on the topic of “Panama and Globalization.”

Upon returning back to the U.S., the Scholars will use the information they collected and the first-hand experiences they had to write their final research papers.

Last year the Garfield Institute took its first international trip to Cuba, studying “U.S.-Cuba Relations.”

Learn more about the Garfield Center for Public Leadership.

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