Enabled and Improved: My Time as a CGCS Visiting Scholar

//2011-2012 Visiting Scholar Leshuo Dong reflects on her experience with CGCS.

It’s amazing how quickly time went by and how much I saw myself improve during my time as a visiting scholar at the Annenberg Center for Global Communication Studies. While enabling me to pursue educational and research activities that explore the global media sphere, CGCS taught me to look at the world with both an open mind and an international perspective.

The Annenberg School for Communication brings together some of the most distinguished scholars in the field of communications. In the well-designed curriculum, professors and students worked together to explore the most important and timely issues concerning the field. For example, in one class with CGCS Director and Professor Monroe Price, visiting scholars and graduate students looked at the development of Internet law and policy by examining the roles of international institutions like NGOs, legislative initiatives, implementing entities and so on. The conversational, roundtable style of learning helped me to develop my independent thinking.

Outside of the classroom, CGCS brings in a host of great guest speakers for seminars & luncheons throughout the semester. Drawing on insights from many disciplines, including politics, economics, business, and socio-cultural research, the CGCS noontime seminar series proved to be one of my favorite aspects of the program. By merely sitting in the Annenberg building, one can easily connect with some of the brightest minds from around the world.

Gaining knowledge and self-improvement do not only happen on campus, however. For two and half days, the Milton Wolf Seminar brings together a group of well-equipped attendees to present on topics of their own expertise. The seminar provided me we with the amazing opportunity to meet and work with these promising contemporary scholars and practitioners from around the world. During my time at Milton Wolf, I was engaged in intense discourse and discussion around the current and changing role of the media in a transitional world.

I walked away with a deeper and broader understanding of the evolving relationship between media and the global sphere. The seminar looked at these topics through a lens of rapid technological change and the shifting structures and dynamics of the international communication system. I believe that most of the participants would agree – both the rigorous discussions during the day and social interactions at night created a wonderful sense of community and intellectual engagement among those attending.

With connections worldwide, CGCS works with the Program in Comparative Media Law and Policy (PCMLP) at Oxford University and the Center for Media and Communication Studies (CMCS) at Central European University.

At the 2012 Annenberg-Oxford media policy summer program, I had the opportunity to engage in discussions with a variety of global scholars and regulators on important recent trends in technology, international politics and development and their influence on media policy. I was impressed by the diversity of the group; participants came from around the world including from Thailand, Kenya, China, Brazil, India, Pakistan and more. Having been immersed in such a multicultural and multidisciplinary environment, I gained a better understanding of the issues under discussion through a comparative lens.

Last but most importantly, the richness of experience and growth could not happen without the professionalism and support of the CGCS team. During my stay, their conscientious attitude, group-oriented personalities and helpful guidance inspired me most.

 

//Leshuo Dong, CGCS Visiting Scholar (2011-2012)

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