No matter which job a person has, they will most likely come in contact with people from different nations and cultures. It is, therefore, absolutely necessary to accept the reality of global engagement. Global engagement is connecting with the world. Many people often become so involved in their own lives, and the lives of those people around them, that they forget there are other people in the world.
Renowned sociologist, Peter Berger, describes the sudden awareness people obtain about other cultures around them as “culture shock” (6). This realization can often be very frightening and has the potential to harm the individual. All of these problems can be avoided, however, with proper prior knowledge. ASU offers many different resources for students to get involved in learning about new cultures. ASU has study abroad programs on all six of the seven inhabited continent, and, in the year 2006, 1,582 students from ASU studied abroad, some more than once (Rock). Bud Rock is the vice president for Global Engagement at ASU and has extensive experience with studying, learning about, and participating in many different cultures and societies.
One of the reasons Rock gives for becoming globally engaged, is that while many view the world as separate nations, everyone is part of one larger group, humans. The decisions made in one nation affect others, for good or for bad. It is important to take other nations into consideration before deciding to make a change that could ultimately affect others. If more political leaders considered this, the world might not have as much conflict.
One of the main examples given in the presentation on why global engagement is so important was the distribution, or lack thereof, of clean water. Millions, perhaps billions of people live without clean, sanitary water. America manages to have vast supplies and overuse water while people die every day due to contamination from their water. World leaders need to create a comprehensive plan for how to properly distribute clean, healthy water to all people.
Macionis, John J., Nijole V. Benokraitis. Seeing Ourselves: Classic, Contemporary, and Cross-Cultural Readings in Sociology. New Jersey, 2007. Prentice Hall. Pgs. 6-9.