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Our Stories, Our Selves: The Next Intercultural Chapter

What? A workshop retreat on the coast of Maine, to gather with a small group (maximum 8 people) of like-minded intercultural sojourners seeking to weave together the threads of their personal, cultural and professional lives in a way that clarifies their path to a successful career helping others live and work across cultures. The small group will ensure that this will be a personally-tailored experience that is both growth-enhancing and practical.

Who? People who have intercultural experience - personal, professional and/or academic - and are committed to turning this into a force for good. Coaches, expatriate employees and accompanying spouses, teachers, human resource managers, trainers and others who want to fully leverage their personal and professional intercultural skills.

How? Be guided on your reflective journey by two internationally-known intercultural leaders, Tatyana Fertelmeyster and Anne Copeland. We will begin with guided storytelling about your own lives and how you came to have the intercultural values you have. You will engage in a structured planning process that will clarify the kind of professional career you envisage for yourself - be it a next step or a new turn - including a frank analysis of how to ensure your work will result in financial viability. While the workshop is highly individualized, you will also benefit from supporting and learning from others in the group. Optional follow-on virtual group coaching will be available.

Where? The Boothbay Peninsula in mid-coast Maine is the perfect place for reflection and planning (and for your family and friends to explore while you're at the retreat). With miles of free land-trust trails, the award-winning Coastal Maine Botanical Garden, and a fleet of boat tours to view the area from the water, participants will have many lovely venues for reflection and pure enjoyment before, during and/or after the workshop. The course will be held on Barters Island (accessible by a historic swing bridge) in an intimate setting, with views of lobster boats and the occasional seal and bald eagle. There are many nearby lodging and restaurant options.

When? July 16-19, 2020. From the group welcome dinner on Thursday July 16 through final lunch on Sunday July 19.

Why? The most important question is, of course, "Why?" "Why should I carve out a few days of dedicated time to focus on where I've been, where I'd like to be, and how to get there?" More broadly, we will ask (and answer), "Why should we build intercultural bridges in our world? Why should we help others understand those who are different? Why should we mine our own richest resources to offer to others? And how can we turn our knowledge, experience, and intercultural savvy into profitable professional opportunities?" The workshop is rooted in the answers to these questions.

Details? $995. ($100 discount for those who register by April 19, 2020. $50 discount for alumni of Crossing Cultures with Competence or Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication courses.) Fee includes workshop and all workshop materials. We'll help point you to options for lodging and transportation from Boston, MA or Portland, ME (not included in fee). Enrollment maximum: 8 participants.

Now what? Contact us at if you're interested. We'd like to hear a bit about your background and what you are hoping to learn during the workshop, so we can ensure it's a good fit all around.

Your Workshop Leaders

Tatyana Fertelmeyster, LCPC is a founder and principal of Connecting Differences, LLC, a boutique consulting company that provides Leadership and Team Effectiveness consulting, training, and coaching for corporate clients, academic, governmental, and non-profit organizations. Tatyana is a faculty at the Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication (SIIC), as well as Winter (WIIC) and Qatar (QIIC) Institutes. Courses she teachers include Experiential Facilitation Skills; Personal Leadership: Interculturalists Practicing at our Highest and Best; It May Be Something Else: Challenges and Dilemmas of Intercultural and Diversity Work; Counseling Skills for Intercultural and Diversity Professionals; Negotiating Conflict across Worldviews; Dealing with Difficult People, Difficult Issues, and Difficult Moments; and Methods and Tools for Identity Exploration. A journalist by her original training she had to change her career after coming to the United States as a refugee in 1988. She combined her work in refugee services while getting a Masters degree in Guidance and Counseling. And she later combined her work as a psychotherapist and a director of a state-wide family life education program for refugees from 30+ countries with starting and developing her own intercultural training business. Tatyana's involvement with SIETAR USA (Society for Intercultural Education, Training, and Research) includes being its past president and an Advisory Board member. At the 2019 SIETAR USA conference Tatyana co-presented a plenary session entitled From Passion to Payment and Back: Staying True to Your Purpose While Growing Your Business.

Anne Copeland, PhD is a clinical psychologist and the founder and Executive Director of The Interchange Institute, a non-profit organization focused on understanding and supporting people and organizations in intercultural transition. Anne was Associate Professor at Boston University for 19 years before choosing to take her work outside academic life. She has served on the faculty of the Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication, where she taught courses on Storytelling for Intercultural Reflection, The Multicultural Self, and Intercultural Families, and as Program Director for Families in Global Transition. She has written several books and (for more than 25 years) a monthly newsletter on families, culture, and transition (Newcomer's Almanac). She has completed extensive research pertaining to expatriate adjustment; and has authored over 100 research articles, chapters, and professional presentations. She developed and delivers the training-of-trainers course, Crossing Cultures with Competence, for experienced professionals wanting to add new ideas and materials into their cross-cultural training toolkits. And she offers workshops in the corporate, education and medical areas, helping people - from high school students to doctors to managers, as well as those who work with and support them - cross cultures and go home again smoothly.

© 2020, The Interchange Institute