Ethnic and cultural diversity in Minnesota has been changing rapidly, and the
immigrant population is a major factor for this change. Of the many immigrant
populations in Minnesota, Latino and Somali communities are among the largest
and fastest growing. Working with these local communities to engage participants
in their own development is at the core of University’s mission. The question
of how to connect and serve these changing communities is relevant today.
The authors have learned a great deal during their involvement in collaborative
social and economic projects co-created by academic institutions and local communities.
These projects vary around health and nutrition, parenting practices,
school success and others. The top 10 list represent those things we consider
critical. We hope these will offer some reflection points for the conference attendees.
A quick sample of lessons learned: words, concepts and objectives should never
be taken at face value, as these things are loaded with multiple meanings; some
local norms do not apply well to other cultures; in certain cultures it is considered
offensive to disagree; relationship ethic is as important as work ethic; and,
you are never done. Other learnings will be appropriately elaborated upon.
The authors of this presentation come from these two communities, and their
cultural identities give them insights as well as responsibilities. They were
educated in their home countries and the U.S., and find themselves challenged
to raise their voice in the different realities they navigate.
Hurtado, G. Ali; Garbow, Jennifer; Landrieu, Josey; Alba, Antonio; Marczak, Mary.
Our Top 10 List for Working with Diverse Audiences.
University of Minnesota Extension.
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