Round Square Virtual Symposium by Mollie, Y12

On Saturday 21st August, I, along with 273 others from around the world, (six countries and 29 schools), took part in the Round Square Virtual Symposium on the subject of ‘internationalism and the ideal diversity’.

The three-hour event took place between 9am and noon UK time but it was clearly afternoon, evening or late at night in the other time zones. Overall, I found the conference extremely interesting and very insightful.

The symposium was hosted by the Assam Valley School in India with the special guest Ms Gitanjali, from the Himalayan Institute for Alternatives. Her talk was my favourite part of the whole event due to her simple but meaningful language. She described the way of achieving internationalism as “working independently together.” She used this paradox, as a way to explain that in order to accept a diverse society, we must appreciate our own uniqueness before we appreciate others. Gitanjali also shared with us her many different hobbies and achievements and in doing so, highlighted that we are diverse individuals ourselves. Therefore, as diverse individuals, we should accept a diverse society and a diverse world.

Similar to other Round Square conferences, we were then separated into various breakout groups which gave us the opportunity to work in a smaller group of what internationalism means to us. My group and I also went beyond the general topic and even discussed the ways to implement internationalism and the correct ways to accept it.

As a result of some interesting debate, we also came to the conclusion that the three A’s: Accommodation, Adaptation and Acceptance are the steps we must take to achieve our end goal. In the final session of the event, my group and I came together to create the poster below:

Once again, I would like to thank Assam Valley for hosting an amazing conference and to AKS for giving me the opportunity to attend. 

Mollie, Year 12