3D Journeys spurs interest from Croatia National Radio

3D Journeys spurs interest from Croatia National Radio

Feb. 11, 2015

A reporter from Croatia National Radio interviewed Provost David Garrison and Business Professor Dr. Mariangela Vecchiarini recently for a broadcast in that country.

"Apparently they heard about our 3D Journeys focus on Croatia this year, and were intrigued," said Martha Pirkle, Director of Alumni and Community Relations. "We received an email from reporter Majda Ivkovic on Monday, asking if she could talk to us about our interest in Croatia. Of course, we were thrilled."

Croatia InterviewThe interview, conducted via speaker phone, included questions about why Croatia was chosen, what kind of lectures were being offered, things that interest Americans about Croatia and general information about the college.

Garrison explained the travel series to the reporter.

"Every year, we select a nation to study," he said. "We choose four members of our faculty who will give lectures about that country and, at the end of the lecture series, a group of usually about 30 people will travel to that country. So far, we've studied Ireland, Brazil, Spain and now Croatia. "

Participants aren't limited to college faculty, staff and students, he said.

"The folks who attend the 3D Journeys lectures are usually well-educated and sophisticated members of the community who are looking to broaden their understanding of culture in other parts of the world," he said. "It is a very wide-ranging group of people who attend the lectures and travel with us."

r. Vecchiarini Dr. Vecchiarini, a native of Italy, said she has visited Croatia a few times and was impressed with the generosity and hospitality of the Croatian people, as well as the country's beauty and food.
"Especially the delicious fresh seafood," she said with a smile.

Her 3D Journeys lecture April 27 will focus on the economy of Croatia.

"As an entrepreneurship scholar, I will discuss the economic crisis affecting Croatia, Italy and many other European countries," she said. "But I also want to show how Croatia is firmly committed to its growth, and its unique resources that definitely should be appreciated."

Other lectures will look at Croatian cuisine and the history of Christianity in the country.

Ivkovic was curious about how much Americans know about Croatia.

"Our community is probably not familiar at all with it," Garrison said. "That is, until this spring when we will provide this program to help them learn about the country, culture and history of Croatia."

The reporter said the country's tourism board is trying to promote Croatia as a top vacation destination in the U.S. market and asked what Americans would be interested in.

"I think most tourists who are interested in traveling that far around the world are interested in architecture, food, the beauty of the place and understanding as much as they can about the culture in a short period of time," Garrison said.

The provost said the 3D Journeys program is just one example of the college's commitment to global engagement.

"All of our faculty and students have an opportunity to learn more about the cultures of the world during Jan Term, a January offering in which many students travel abroad with professors from the college," he said. "This past January, over 100 students traveled to places like the Philippines, Vietnam and Ecuador."

Concluding the interview, Ivkovic asked for a brief history of the college and requested photographs to be posted on the network's website, Facebook page and Twitter stream.

Then Garrison suggested Ivkovic might be interested in meeting up with the 3D Journeys travelers while they are in Croatia in May.

"You could do a follow-up interview with some of the people from our community who are visiting your country," he said. "That might make an interesting conversation."

Ivkovic agreed and arranged to stay in touch to schedule that interview.

After ending the call, Garrison said he was delighted he and Dr. Vecchiarini could help spread the word about LaGrange College.

"Ivkovic was very impressed with our commitment to helping our students and community members become citizens of the world," he said. "3D Journeys is a great example of how the college is supporting meaningful global awareness."

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