The symposium "World Conversations," first held in 2007, is one of the Wang Center's activities that support and strengthen the university's globally focused academic programs and offer public education programming. World conversations is designed to give students returning from study away - semester programs as well as short-term courses conducted each January - an opportunity to share with the campus community what they learned and experienced. Through a series of concurrent sessions, it is an opportunity for students to share with each other, and especially those who did not go away, what they learned about crossing cultural borders and understanding other perspectives and global issues.
World Conversations is also an occasion, through keynote addresses, to hear from members of the PLU faculty who are involved in significant research projects overseas or who have had unique international experiences. They too have much to teach us about our world.
For World Conversations 2009 included a keynote presentation by Professor Chuck Bergman on his ongoing research in the Amazon on illegal wildlife trafficking. Professor Colleen Hacker also gave a keynote presentation about her experiences as a coach in the Beijing Olympics. The Closing Plenary was given by David Suze Manda who spoke on the current conflict in Eastern Congo. World Conversations 2009 concluded with "Canboulay, a carnival celebration, staged by students fro Trinidad and Tobago along with the International Student Club.