Leigh HS-WVC-SJSU Global Pathway Project

Joining the Mini-Salzburg Project was one of the best choices I have made in my life. I’ve overcome many fears, stepped out of my comfort zone, gained research skills, and most importantly, I have become a better leader. My second semester at WVC was very different, challenging, because things didn’t go as planned–but participating in this project helped me to remember that I can confront a hard situation. With the help of my team, and the teachers who were there to support us and who accompanied us, the day of the conference, especially, was a success.

During the conference at Leigh High School, when I started to discuss my topic, which was, “how to be global in the working community,” the students were not as engaged and not as I expected. My nerves took over me and I started to doubt myself as a moderator, but Ms. Vicky, Dr. Anna, and Ken were there supporting me and giving me advice. My first group discussion was a total fail. I had two choices: either walk out or keep going and managing the situation. I chose to keep going. With the advice and support of all, by the time I had to lead the third group of Leigh High School students, I started to feel confident.

The most important lesson I learned the day of the conference was to believe in myself. I feel proud of what a success this day became. Now I can apply this experience to any situation I might encounter in life. As Ms. Vicky told me, “You Live and You Learn.”

Written by Claudia Garcia, WVC student and leader at the spring 2014 Global Pathway Conference.

Left to right: Ken Hawthorne, Salzburg Global Seminar Fellow and graduate student at San Jose State University; Vicky Kalivitis, SGS Fellow and "Mini-Salzburg" WVC faculty leaders; WVC student; Dr. Anna Brichko, SGS Fellow and "Mini-Salzburg" WVC faculty leader; Sonia Espejo, WVC student leader; WVC student leader, Michaela Rhine, WVC student leader.

Left to right: Ken Hawthorne, Salzburg Global Seminar Fellow and graduate student at San Jose State University; Vicky Kalivitis, SGS Fellow and “Mini-Salzburg” WVC faculty leaders; Chantel Ricks, WVC student; Dr. Anna Brichko, SGS Fellow and “Mini-Salzburg” WVC faculty leader; Sonia Espejo, WVC student leader; Natasha Morgan-Wittts, WVC student leader; Claudia Garcia, WVC student leader; Michaela Rhine, WVC student leader.

By the end of summer 2012, Anna Brichko, Dulce Maria Gray, Vicky Kalivitis and Cynthia Reiss, faculty members of the WVC Global Citizenship Committee, had all attended the Global Citizenship Program for faculty and administrators, at the Salzburg Global Seminar in Salzburg Austria, a one week intensive seminar that explores strategies for institutional change and for designing global education initiatives that affect institutional policies, enhance curriculum and develop faculty’s skills. Having discussed, as a committee, the need for a “global citizenship pipeline” to help anchor students in their path from high school through community college and on to university, Dr. Cynthia  Reiss, Chair of the WVC GCC, who was also working on a project with Give Students a Compass, suggested a collaboration with Leigh High School, one of the highest feeder schools for WVC, and San Jose State University, for whom WVC is the highest feeder school.

After many conversations, recollections about the value of having completed the Global Citizenship Program, and disappointments in not having the funds to send numerous WVC students to the Salzburg Seminar, these five members of the WVC GCC decided to bring the Salzburg Global Seminar to WVC students and to create a Leigh High School-West Valley College-San Jose State University Global Pathway Project. That is, the subcommittee decided to adapt the Salzburg Global Seminar framework and to create a “Mini-Salzburg” Project for students. Dr. Gray was able to secure funds from the SB70 Grant, a grant that WVC had been awarded by the California Department of Education for providing integrated academic and career technical instruction to students who are at risk of dropping out of school or who are not motivated by traditional curricula. Heidi Diamond and then Jean McIntosh administered this grant. Dr. Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis took on the leadership of the “Mini-Salzburg”/”Global Pathway” project.

A student application form and competitive process was designed and made public on the WVC webpage. WVC students were invited to participate for a semester-long remunerated project that entailed working alongside WVC faculty advisors, Dr. Brichko and Ms. Kalivitis, students at San Jose State University who were also alumni of the Salzburg Global Seminar in Austria, the Leigh High School coordinator for this program, and students at Leigh High School. Together, all participants would discuss possibilities and identify timely topics based on the curriculum at Leigh High School, research those topics, and plan an interactive one day “Global Pathway Project” conference for Leigh High School students. The Principal at Leigh High School, Donna Hope, and Leigh HS faculty members Rachel Roth and Rebecca Soret, were instrumental in collaborating and making each of the events a success.

Following are descriptions, written by Dr. Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis, about each of the four “Global Pathway Project” sessions during fall 2012, spring 2013, fall 2013 and spring 2014: No2No1 Fall 2012 Placed and Displaced: A Global Citizenship Approach

As part of the WVC-SJSU Global Pathway Project, we, Anna Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis, led the “Mini-Salzburg” conference that created a themed pathway between high school, community college and university to cultivate relational framework within institutions starting at the high school level.

WVC faculty advisors and Salzburg scholars met with Leigh HS faculty leaders to discuss and select topics of focus that corresponded with their curricular needs; the announcement to recruit WVC student participants was published; students submitted applications; faculty advisors selected participants; SJSU Salzburg student fellows led the selected group of WVC students through the course of the semester in researching the topic “Place and Displaced,” and in preparing and delivering an interactive conference to Leigh High School students. Leigh High School faculty implemented core readings into their curriculum to prepare their students for a productive dialogue on the day of the conference.

In Fall 2012, the theme was “Placed and Displaced: A Global Citizenship Approach.” The three breakout sessions that were held focused respectively on Environment, Food and Trade. The specific discussions were as follows: Complexity of Water, Complexity of GMOs, and Complexity of Corporate Social Responsibility.

WVC Faculty Advisors, Salzburg Fellows: Dr. Anna Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis

Leigh High School Program Coordinators: Donna Hope, Principal; Rachel Roth, faculty.

SJSU Salzburg Scholars: Alexander Ciak, Matthew Diez, Ken Hawthorn. 

WVC Student Leaders: Sonia Espejo, Sergio Gonzalez, Mariah Hemminger, Francis Lansana, Roksolana Melnychuk, Shiheon Song, Khalid Subainati, Aditi Prabhakar, Michaela Rhine, Ramon Rousse, Haleh Samak.

The project for fall 2012 was a great success! WVC students and SJSU scholars were highly motivated, and Leigh High School students, faculty and administrators were impressed and asked that the project be repeated during spring 2013.


No3 No4 Spring 2013 Technology in a Global World

Charge: to collaborate with San Jose State University Salzburg scholars, Leigh High School teachers and West Valley College students in order to organize, manage and deliver a Global Citizenship and Entrepreneurship conference that reaches high school students. To complete this task we, Dr. Anna Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis:

  • Created an application process to recruit a group of dynamic West Valley College students;
  • selected eleven WVC students;
  • recruited and held multiple meetings with SJSU Salzburg scholars to conceptualize the conference;
  • facilitated large group meetings with both West Valley College students and SJSU scholars;
  • communicated and held multiple meetings with Leigh High School teachers and administrators;
  • functioned as liaisons for the exchange of ideas between SJSU scholars, West Valley College students and Leigh High School teachers and administrators;
  • supervised the interaction between SJSU scholars and WVC students;
  • reviewed all research material;
  • guided research and discussions about the role and impact of technology on diverse societies;
  • actively engaged in the preparation of all components of the conference (e.g., break-out sessions, ensuring a student-center delivery approach);
  • prepared the logistics for the delivery of the conference;
  • designed and distributed pamphlets, programs and announcement;
  • ensured smooth delivery of the conference;
  • debriefed and compiled feedback from both students and teachers;
  • proposed ways for moving forward.

WVC Faculty Advisors, Salzburg Fellows: Dr. Anna Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis.

Leigh High School Program Coordinators: Donna Hope, Principal; Rachel Roth, faculty; Rebecca Soret, faculty.

SJSU Salzburg Scholars: Alexander Ciak and Ken Hawthorn.

WVC Student Leaders: Andrew Brayton, Charles Carbonaro, Danielle de Guzman-Armstead, Khalid Subainati, Boris Cherny, Sonia Espejo, Francis Lansana, Roxanne Melnychuk, Alex Post, Michaela Rhine, Haleh Samak.

The spring 2013 was an even greater success, with more students in attendance, and increased enthusiasm and motivation to continue the project.

***No5 No6

Fall 2013 Sustainability – Global Citizenship and Entrepreneurship

Environment Social Political
– Ethics – Ethics – Ethics
– Choices – Choices – Choices
– Individuals Vs. Society – Individuals Vs. Society – Individuals Vs. Society

This semester’s conference at Leigh High School took place on 15 November 2013. The umbrella topic for this semester was Sustainability. Too often when we think of sustainability, we only think of the environment. This semester we broadened that scope. The three break-out sessions focused on social, political and environmental issues as they pertain to sustainability framed by entrepreneurship and global citizenship. Students considered fundamental questions: What shall a global entrepreneur and citizen of the world consider–on a local and global scope–with respect to the environment in social and political realms? Each break-out session at the conference focused on sub-categories: Ethics, Choices, Actions and Individuals Vs. Society.

We encouraged students to complete readings prior to attending the break-out sessions, so they could be better prepared for the conversations. If students already have a particular interest, they were directed to the appropriate session and to the particular readings. If they did not, students were informed about each of the sessions and were given full access to all of the readings. This approach turned out to be a more effective way of utilizing a greater amount of conference time on discussion rather than on students trying to select sessions. Teachers at Leigh HS were diligent in incorporating the readings into their curriculum.

West Valley College and San Jose State University participants were honored to collaborate with dynamic Leigh High School teachers, students and administrators. We were especially thankful for Rachel Roth for being the liaison between our respective institutions as well as an active member of the planning process.

WVC Faculty Advisors, Salzburg Fellows: Dr. Anna Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis

Leigh High School Program Coordinators: Donna Hope, Principal; Rachel Roth, faculty.

SJSU Salzburg Scholars: Patience McHenry and Ken Hawthorn.

WVC Student Leaders: Haleh Aboofazeli, Charles Carbonaro, Danielle de Guzman-Armstead, Natasha Morgan-Witts, Aditi Prabhakar, Sonia Espejo, Roxanne Melnychuk, Michaela Rhine, Mario Urcuyo.

The fall 2013 conference was overwhelmingly successful and was considered a valuable tradition and productive collaboration among the three institutions that serve a huge number of students in Silicon Valley. Anecdotal evidence indicated that in addition to introducing students to the three institutions, the “global citizenship pipeline” motivated students to continue their formal education.

***No7 No8

Spring 2014 Career Choices; Entrepreneur vs. Employer in the Global Working Community

This year’s event was a tremendous success. As West Valley College fellows, we, Anna Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis, guided a team of West Valley College students and San Jose State University Salzburg scholars to design and deliver a conference geared to Leigh High School students with the theme of “career directions” so that students could address choices and actions that affect the local and the global as well as the employer vs the entrepreneurial possibilities involved in choosing a profession. Over 240 students attended the conference. Because of the high demand, we delivered the conference on two consecutive Fridays: May 2 and May 9.

Each conference day was comprised of two consecutive sessions, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. In designing the conference, we met with high school global citizenship/entrepreneurship coordinators to discuss the theme, the breakout sessions and the logistical details; in addition, we met with Salzburg scholars and West Valley College students to select and evaluate research material, to discuss delivery and to guide students toward becoming successful facilitators.

In our final meeting, we assessed the outcome of the conference, including successes and points of improvement, and solicited student feedback. Students overwhelmingly admitted that the conference influenced their career outlook, that they were empowered with the entrepreneurial spirit, and that they became more aware of their actions on local and global levels.

WVC Faculty Advisors, Salzburg Fellows: Dr. Anna Brichko and Vicky Kalivitis

Leigh High School Program Coordinators: Donna Hope, Principal; Rachel Roth, faculty; Rebecca Soret.

SJSU Salzburg Scholars: Jonathan Perez and Ken Hawthorn.

WVC Student Leaders: Darin Barochilev, Natasha Morgan-Witts, Sonia Espejo, Claudia Garcia, Chantal Ricks, Michaela Rhine.


The WVC Global Citizenship Committee is very proud of the work accomplished with this project! This was a successful two-year/four semester collaboration that impacted over five hundred students. This project helped students to develop and hone leadership and organizational skills, to establish-keep deadlines and manage time, to work independently and collaboratively, to gain confidence in speaking publicly, to conduct rigorous research and apply the findings, and to conceptualize, plan, organize and deliver a conference.

This entry was composed by Dr. Anna Brichko, Ms. Vicky Kalivitis, and Dr. Dulce Maria Gray.