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Culture chat: Supporting the 21st century interculturalist

It was wonderful to see so many of you at Culture Chat and thank you for your congratulatory words in celebrating The Interchange Institute’s 25 years and Dr. Anne Copeland’s contributions to the field. We are grateful for such a supportive community and look forward to what the next 25 years will bring. We are pleased to publicly launch our two initiatives: The Interculturalist Circle and the Intercultural Training Expertise Certification (ITEC). Please see below for more details. We are also happy to share with you the executive summary for the Building and Nurturing Your Intercultural Career survey (attached) and the full report is available for purchase on our website (unless you’re an Interculturalist Circle member, then it’s free!).

Here is the link to the video for today’s Culture Chat session (all future recordings and supplemental materials will be available in the Interculturalist Circle for members only).

Want to learn more about Interculturalist Circle and Intercultural Training Expertise Certification? join our Q&A Session on March 16th at 10 am GMT/5 pm ICT or at 10 am EST/3 pm GMT.
Zoom Link:

Interculturalist Circle Link to become a Founding Member
Limited time offer (until March 21st, 2022): 14-month membership for the price of a 12-month membership $150.
Annual membership renewal date is based on date of purchase.

Intercultural Training Expertise Certification (ITEC) Link to Guide and Instructions
ITEC Guide (see attached)
Questions asked during Culture Chat:

  • Is there any credential for the certification with a university or other recognized agency? Or does it hope to become the IC credentialing agency?
    • The Interchange institute is the credentialing agency for the ITEC certification with support from hiring agencies and SIETAR USA.
  • Does having completed the Crossing Cultures with Competence (CCwC) workshop help as evidence in gaining the ITEC certification?
    • Yes, the CCwC, along with other train the trainer workshops, could serve as way to demonstrate expertise in various domain areas. See pages 5-12 for other suggestions.
  • What is the application fee?
    • $1200 for the certification, which includes applying for one specialty area. Additional specialty areas can be applied for, for a cost of $100 per specialty area (see page 14 of the ITEC Guide).
    • We are hoping to offer $150 discount to SIETAR USA members; contact us before paying if you are a SIETAR USA member.
  • How long is the validity of ITEC certification eg. is it for lifetime/renewed periodically?
    • This is a lifetime certification but additional specialty areas could be attained at a later date.
  • Who are on the judging panel for the ITEC?
    • ePortfolio evaluators are experienced trainers and specialty area experts who are responsible for insuring the integrity of the evaluation process. One or more evaluators assess each of the skill and knowledge domains and specialty area. Final scores are reviewed and approved by the ITEC Review Board.
  • Is English the only language mode for the e-portfolio?
    • If you have supporting materials in another language, please contact us for options.
  • If we are certified in an intercultural tool (like the IDI), does that count as evidence?
    • Yes. Any certifications or completion certificates you have would make excellent additions to your portfolio.
  • Please note: The ITEC is not a requirement for hiring, and hiring agencies may have requirements beyond those included in the ITEC (for example, intercultural living experience, masters degrees, years of experience). Rather, the ITEC is a way for interculturalists to signal their readiness to offer services efficiently and with transparency, confirmed by an independent non-profit organization, and for those who hire intercultural trainers to have increased confidence in their hiring, backed up by our certification.

Culture Chat
We look forward to our next Culture Chat, March 23rd, at 10 am EST (2 pm GMT/9 pm ICT) where Teratai will lead our discussion in, “Creating E-Learning with Bloom’s Taxonomy: The Intercultural Training Edition”.
(PLEASE CHECK THE TIMES as daylight savings is observed in some countries next week).
Time Zone Converter Link

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1 thought on “Culture chat: Supporting the 21st century interculturalist”

  1. MrsTashaArnold21

    Interculturalist Circle members, please get in touch if you’d like to co-lead a Culture Chat.

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About us

The work of understanding others and helping others understand us is our mission. 

We design and deliver specialized cross-cultural training workshops, train and consult to professionals in the field, conduct research on the process of intercultural transition, produce publications to assist newcomers to the US.

The Interchange Institute is a not-for-profit research organization established in 1997 by Dr. Anne P. Copeland. The work of smoothing intercultural transitions has never been so critical.

Recent Posts

Dr. Tasha Arnold is an experienced leader and researcher in the field of education specializing in cross-cultural training, transition support, and program development for schools, universities, and global teams. She co-founded The Academic Achievement Bureau where she worked with international schools and universities conducting research on their organization and providing services to aid intercultural understanding, transition adjustment, and student achievement. She is currently the Executive Director of The Interchange Institute, a NEASC and CIS school accreditor, and serves on the board of The Namibia Project.  

Sample Questions:

  • I’m interested in working with international schools, universities, NGO’s, and not-for-profit organizations – How should I get started and who do I contact?
  • How do I promote and market my services as an intercultural trainer?
  • What are some tips and tricks for working with multicultural and global teams?
  • How do I write a proposal that stands out from the competition?

Terri McGinnis, M.S.

Senior Trainer​

Terri is an independent cross-cultural trainer specializing in helping families moving overseas, assisting those coming from overseas to live and work in the U.S., and providing group business briefings on China, Brazil and USA. Terri has worked with large automotive companies, automotive suppliers, oil companies, national office supply and furniture companies, the construction industry, electronic companies, IT companies, chemical companies, not to mention many other national and international companies.

A well-read and traveled individual, Terri has lived in and navigated different cultures successfully. Ms. McGinnis lived with her family as an expatriate in Beijing, China. In China, she conducted cross-cultural training programs, studied Mandarin, worked for the International School of Beijing providing classes to their staff, and provided Pilates training to individuals in the expatriate community of Beijing.

In addition to her overseas experience in China, Ms. McGinnis also lived with her family as an expatriate in Brazil for three years where she studied Portuguese. In addition to her language studies, she worked for Fiske School teaching English as a second language to Brazilian nationals. While in Brazil, the International School of Curitiba engaged her services for curriculum and staff development.

Prior to her international assignments, Ms. McGinnis was a high school teacher teaching vocational business skills. She also has eight years of experience in the automotive industry working in various HR positions.

Ms. McGinnis graduated with a Master of Science degree in Instructional Technology and a Bachelor of Science degree in Education.

Her experiences in Brazil and China have taught her to appreciate the world’s diversity and to cross cultures successfully. Her hobbies are reading, sea kayaking, paddle boarding and travel. She has two daughters attending university. She actively volunteers for her a local national club swim team.

alt="Tasha Arnold Executive Director of The Interchange Institute"

Tasha Arnold, Ed.D.

Executive Director

Dr. Tasha Arnold is an experienced leader and researcher in the field of education specializing in cross-cultural training and development for schools, universities, and multicultural teams. As the Executive Director of The Interchange Institute (TII), Tasha is responsible for overseeing the administration, programs and strategic plan of TII, while also serving as an evaluator for the Intercultural Training Expertise Certification (ITEC) Board and being actively involved in the training of emerging and experienced interculturalists through the Crossing Cultures with Competence Train the Trainer program.

Tasha is a certified teacher and principal/head of school and accredits schools worldwide with the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and Council for International Schools.

Prior to her work at the Interchange Institute, Tasha held positions in both public and private schools and co-founded The Academic Achievement Bureau where she worked with international schools and universities conducting research on their organization and provided services to aid intercultural understanding, transition adjustment, and student and staff well-being.

Tasha has directed several research studies in the UK and Qatar on educators’ experiences and perceived needs with regards to transition at their international school in order to improve the transition experience for educators, students and families in these cultural contexts. These findings have helped her to develop and deliver school-wide transition and intercultural development programs.

Originally from the USA, Tasha relocated in 2011 to the UK and currently resides with her husband near London. She serves on the board of The Namibia Project Charity.

Anne P. Copeland, Ph.D.

Founder of The Interchange Institute

Dr. Copeland is a clinical psychologist with expertise in family and cultural transition. During her tenure as Executive Director of The Interchange Institute, she provided cross-cultural training for individuals and families moving to and from the United States. She also trained almost 500 interculturalists around the world to deliver tailored, individualized cross-cultural orientation programs through the Crossing Cultures with Competence program that she developed.

Dr. Copeland has written several books on families and transition (Studying Families, Sage 1991, Separating Together 1997, and In Their Own Voice 2011), and has authored over 90 research articles, chapters, and professional presentations.

Prior to founding The Interchange Institute in 1997, Dr. Copeland was Associate Professor of Psychology at Boston University, where she conducted research and research supervision in psychological aspects of family process assessment, ethnicity, cultural influences, immigration, development, developmental disabilities and affective development. During her tenure at the University, she relocated with her family to work in London in 1988, where she was the academic advisor for Boston University’s British Programmes.

Dr. Copeland has directed many research studies on expatriate families’ experience, including multinational in-depth analyses of the social, familial, and personal aspects of moving to a new country, including a focus on the personal and family side of international short-term assignments, the role of one’s home – its design and layout – on one’s expatriate experience, on the challenges of moving to a country that is perceived as very similar, the experiences of high school exchange host families, and the ways in which having experienced being different as a child has an impact on the expatriate experience. Recent work focuses on how interculturalists have built and nurtured their careers.

Dr. Copeland lives with her husband in Boston, MA, and Barters Island, ME.