Prof. Virginia Haufler


Thank you for finding your way to the Global Communities Living-Learning website. As Director of the program, I am eager to introduce you to Global Communities and answer your questions.

You may be wondering--what is the Global Communities program about? It is a global studies program for entering freshmen in any major. We know that today, the food we eat, the jobs we get, and the people we meet all are connected globally in ways never before seen in history. These global connections can bring exciting opportunities but also can bring challenges and burdens that confront people in different ways. As the novelist William Gibson said, "The future is here, it's just not evenly distributed." We want to make sure that students acquire the knowledge and skills to navigate the interconnected world successfully.

The Global Communities program provides students with an interdisciplinary understanding of globalization and global issues, including the way they are experienced unevenly by different communities worldwide. Through learning in and out of the classroom, we introduce the knowledge and skills that help students succeed, at the university and in future careers. We believe that understanding the global context can help students thrive in the 21st century.

This is above all a program built on community. We invite students who are interested in global affairs to join us, whatever their major is. The program offers special Global Communities courses that everyone takes together. Members live together in the relatively small, centrally located, and newly renovated Dorchester Hall. The program provides special opportunities to experience global learning by taking advantage of our location in one of the most international regions of the US. We organize field trips to embassies, museums, exhibits, even a chocolate factory. Our Global Conversations speaker series provides opportunites to meet ambassadors and leading experts to talk about current events and cutting-edge research. Our cultural enrichment program includes conversations and performances by artists from around the world, and authentic ethnic dinners catered by area restaurants.

Global Communities students have traveled to the far corners of the globe to learn and experience everything from traditional medicine, to environmental conservation, to engineering and art history. Students have dedicated themselves to service to those in need, at home and abroad, engaging with people from different backgrounds and cultures. They have applied what they have learned in challenging internships with government agencies, businesses and non-profit organizations in the Washington, DC region. Many of our alumni have gone on to great success in graduate school and in diverse careers, and we invite them back regularly to share their experiences.

I invite you to take a look around our website, check out our social meda, and learn more about the Global Communities Living-Learning program. Let me know if you have any questions--I look forward to hearing from you.


Dr. Virginia Haufler

Dr. Virginia Haufler, Director