Forbes has come out with the results of a study which rates the friendliest countries. Actually, they were determining countries that expatriates (especially Anglophones) find the easiest time assimilating into. The criteria included: ease of making friendships, learning the language, and ability to fit into the culture. About 5000 expats were surveyed- Cayman islands came out as the friendliest. Australia is second. The USA is seventh. See the story here. Unfortunately, the story doesn’t list the least-friendly countries, but does go on to say that expats might ENJOY living in other places more (such as Hong Kong), because of high salaries, night life, or services available- but that doesn’t mean they’re friendlier or easier to assimilate into. This is important data to be assembling and analyzing- would you rather do business in a friendly country?
How wonderful that the Executive Lecture Forum provides opportunities for professors, professionals, students and military personnel to hear from diplomats and global leaders. On Oct 17, Belhaven undergraduates Kaitlyn Butler, Seohee Song, Anna-Maria Russo, and Isaac Semrad attended the lecture by Turkey’s ambassador to the US: Namik Tan. Mr. Tan’s speech was meant to subvert long-held Western European narratives that paint Turkey in a negative light. Instead, he described Turkey as an important peace-keeper, being situated between Syria, Iraq and Macedonia. He said that rather than retreating and being self-absorbed, Turkey is engaging global issues, and is an important voice in the 21st century.
Dr. Stephen Phillips (Political Science) and I joined the four students, who are all majors in Political Science or International Studies. We were treated to a great lunch of salmon and creme brulee at the historic Fairview Inn in Belhaven.
Thanks to the hospitality of the ELF, we look forward to some more lectures by international leaders in the near future.