Polycom Employee

Today 103 students from 6 high schools across the US connected with 4 students and a teacher at the ETN Vocational School in Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). This program was organized and facilitated by the Global Nomads Group and Polycom, Inc. Education Team.  Schools in the US reached from Hillsborough, NJ, Siler City, NC, Jennings, LA, Boise and Post Falls, ID to Kenai, AK (AK students had to be at school at 6:00 a.m. for this videoconference). The students at ETN are studying computing, electronics, plumbing, cooking and sewing in order to find employment and be contributing members of the community. Due to political unrest in the DRC, students leave school at 3:00 p.m., many having a long walk home, as a strict curfew of 6:00 p.m. is enforced. The ETN students questioned the American students as to their daily schedule, whether we had vocational schools, and if there was unemployment in the US. Both the DRC and the US students shared family structure and local government. The program ended with each site having the opportunity to share a cultural element from their area: the Star Spangled banner played on the flute from NJ, a mini Mardi Gras parade from LA, a guitar song from ID and photos of the natural resources in AK. The DRC students ended with a lively Congolese song. The US students now have the chance to make a difference in the life of these DRC students by creating bones out of any material they choose as part of a participatory arts project to cover the National Mall in Washington, D.C. with 1,000,000 handmade bones. This simple gesture of unity and hope will have a powerful visual impact, generate critical funds, raise awareness, and help rebuild lives in Somalia and the Democratic Republic of Congo. For every handmade bone, the Bezos Family Foundation will donate $1- up to $500,000- to CARE International, a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty.


A great time was had by all student, in fact, they wanted to stay connected for a while longer. 



To learn more go to Polycom Special Events.

Blog submitted by Sue Porter, Polycom Consultant

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