Dee Stafford - Kultural Kurator
Updated: Dec 2, 2019
She, Her, Hers
Ethnicity - Black
Occupation - Assistant Director, Study Abroad & Exchanges
Years of Employment - 3
What global experiences have you taken part in when you were a student and/or as a young professional? I studied abroad in undergrad. I also attended NAFSA Regional Conference and and NAFSA Annual Conference as a professional.
How has Global Education impacted you and your career choices?
As an undergraduate, I was working to enter a field for Public Relations. In the fall of 2008 I got the opportunity to study abroad at Jean Moulin Lyon 3 in Lyon France. It shifted my entire focus on trying to enter the field of international education. I felt that everyone should get the chance to go abroad, not just to see the world, but to discover oneself.
What do you enjoy most about the work that you do in Global Education?
I love the "aha" moment-when a student realizes that they can actually afford to go abroad-that it won't put them behind for graduation, and they get excited about their study abroad options.
What challenges have you had to overcome as you work in Global Education?
The misconceptions that students have in regards to study abroad. Sometimes, those thoughts are so cemented that there's no changing their mind.
How has your cultural identity impacted your experience working in Global Education?
I make myself more available for black students to vocalize their concerns about studying abroad. Sometimes, talking to someone who looks like you makes asking questions easier.
As a Kultural Kurator, what does culture mean to you?
It's a shared moment, time or experience between people.
Self care is so important as we live our lives and grow in our professions. How do you incorporate self care into your life?
The saying you can't pour from an empty cup is painfully true. I'm continuing to develop my self care routine, but for right now I log off of technology and sit in the quiet for an hour when I get home to destress and recenter; I get a massage once a month, and I play a lot of video games.
What advice would you give to a future Kultural Kurator as they think about taking opportunities to explore the world around them?
Volunteer, intern and find a mentor that's already in the field! They'll be the ones that will help you hone your skill set.