Georgian Student Wins ExchangesConnect Challenge

September 10, 2009
ExchangesConnect Mascot Challenge Winner and His Design

About the Author: Michelle E. Neyland services as ExchangesConnect Network Administrator.

Future Leaders Exchange Program (FLEX) 2008-2009 alumnus Giorgi Maghlakelidze, from the Republic of Georgia, was recently announced as the winner of the Mascot Challenge on the ExchangesConnect website. ExchangesConnect, an international social networking site managed by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs in the U.S. Department of State, recently challenged its members to design a mascot that represents its mission of cross-cultural dialogue and international exchange. Designs were submitted from all over the world.

Maghlakelidze designed iDrop with the idea that it represents each one of us. Just as drops of water collect to form streams, waterfalls, and large oceans, Maghlakelidze used the image of a drop to symbolize how we, as people, can increase our own strength by connecting with others across the globe.

“Even though we might be from different parts of the world, we are the same,” Maghlakelidze said, “We have immense, world-changing power within us, but especially when we unite.”

Maghlakelidze participated in a FLEX program in California. FLEX students spend a year in the United States living with a host family and attending an American high school. Maghlakelidze described the FLEX program as “nothing else I've experienced my entire life. It was a magical, mind-changing, best-friend-making, life-teaching, extremely-interesting, rich-experience-giving year. Never before have I experienced such magnificent adventures, learned so much about other country and people, and myself. My life has changed, and so have I.”

Related Entry: ExchangesConnect Reaches 10,000 Members



September 12, 2009

John in Greece writes:

Congratulations Giorgi, great artwork and concept. And the most important is that you feel free and you fight for Democracy no matter the difficulties.

My Note: Giorgi is coming from a country which faced and faces multiple problems (from the Russians). I imagine that everyday climate there -- psychology in general -- is not the best for someone to create in a free way (without "fears" about the future). But, Giorgi did it!

What I mean is that he did not had an ideal climate to help him create in an added value way. Nevertheless, not only he was great in his "submission" (according to me his mascot was the best), but also the winner of this great project. I think that this means a lot.

Congratulations Giorgi! Keep up your "great spirit".

@ Michelle -- I don't like repeating myself, although sometimes it's useful and "must". You already know my opinion concerning the way you administrate exchangesconnect (from a post there). Although I am not the appropriate target group of this social net (age wise), I love visiting and reading things there from time to time. This makes me feel young too. YOU ARE DOING A GREAT JOB, because I think you love what you do! Thank you!

September 21, 2009

John in Greece writes:

Young netcitizens, I found this link extremely interesting.

So, I decided to suggest you an "iHit" (CHUCKLE):

@ Susan in Florida -- I think that all people in education everywhere in the world must promote "connect" to their students. I think -- even for us, who are older (LOL) -- that it's a very fresh and exciting site!


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