Global Pathfinders Summit: Lailanie Enriquez' Digital Journal
The Global Pathfinder Summit, presented by Presidential Precinct and American Evolution, connected 28 Exchange Visitor Program participants representing 20 countries and 5 program categories (Au Pair, Intern, Trainee, Camp Counselor, and Summer Work Travel) with professors, program directors, CEOs, editors, and more in Virginia to look towards the future and create a space where our future leaders could network, share ideas, and ultimately leave with the building blocks to enact positive change in their communities.
The Global Pathfinder Summit (GPS) will equip a generation of emerging leaders with the perspectives, strategies, and tools necessary to create sustainable change in their local and global communities. Connect with other civically engaged youth from around the world on important topics like the impact of youth movements on global challenges, civic education, and the state of global democracy today.
Lailanie Enriquez, a culinary trainee from Loews Portofino Hotel in Orlando, Florida, earned a placement at the summit by submitting a strong application showcasing her desire to learn and positively impact her community. When asked “What values do you hold true to when leading change in your community? How different would our world look if global leaders used these values to drive decision making?”, Lailanie responded,
As a person, I value empathy for other people – that we all have our own strength and weaknesses and consideration for each other is the most essential thing we could possess and I believe that if our global leaders would try to look deeper behind our issues and conflicts and try to understand each other, we could tackle and provide better solutions to our problems and make greater things happen and create synergy between our nations.
Exchange Visitor programs change lives. Simply, they change the Exchange Visitors by introducing them to a new culture, leading to a sense of independence, and providing them the opportunity to learn new skills for their future careers. However, the reach of the program goes beyond just the participant. Each Exchange Visitor ultimately impacts their local host community. Hopefully, their impact reaches globally by Exchange Visitors creating an international network and sharing their new knowledge of American, and other nations’, culture, work place practices, politics, etc. The Exchange Visitor program works towards building a world based on mutual understand and respect. We are proud that Lailanie’s participation in the Global Pathfinder Summit is a step towards this world.
We requested that Lailanie keep a digital journal of her time at the Global Pathfinders Summit - presented below - for a glimpse into her experience.
Lailanie’s Digital Journal
To the Other Side of the Horizon: Flying to the Capital / May 19, 2019
The scent of coffee surrounded the living room as the sunlight slowly touched the window. It could have been a typical early morning, but it won't be today, for months have passed when a black swan opened it's path and inside was hope and an unknown possibility that I believed will lead me into something greater than who I am --- this day, I will be crossing a different side of the horizon.
Packed with courage and passion to learn new perspectives from people, to hear stories and exchange insights --- I was greeted with warmth and mutual desire to meet everyone, in a place filled with history and culture, connections was built from strangers, strangers armed with humility and their own passions... this was the beginning of infinite stories.
As we walked through the park, The sun shone mercilessly but each step was filled with story and laughter as we felt connected than we thought we would.
Diversity in Action and Diving Deeper on Democracy / May 20, 2019
This day began with so much fascination, sharing the same space with the most diverse group of people I have ever been with. People from different nations all over the world, different traditions and culture, different lifestyle and passion -- but on that day onwards, we all stood in a common ground -- growth. We seek and travelled to educate ourselves and challenge our own beliefs by leveraging our differences and collecting ideas and insights through listening and also sharing our own perspectives. It created an active environment of engaging with one another and became the epitome of the most essential value and \core of democracy --- the people. To be able to promote democracy in our community, we should seek active involvement from our citizens with respect and recognition of our own strength and weaknesses to create better solutions on our issues as we are greater as one.
Ignition and the Beginning of Change / May 21, 2019
How do we take action? And if you are not certain how, what moves you? But the most important question is, why should we act? Why should we involve ourselves? What moves people is purpose; the things and values that we hope for, believe in, and feel strongly about.
In relating this perspective in my own story, I wouldn't be part of this life changing event if I didn't believe in education and how I define it as a person. The Global Pathfinder Summit opened its door and their core spoke through me as I opened up myself on who I am and what I value and what I hope for with other people.
It was the connection that I felt that made all these things happen and what created a greater meaningful experience, not just for me but for everyone who had been part of it.
It was a beautiful, transcendent experience that paved its path into my core. By sharing this experience to everyone, this is what I opt to do, and I hope to share more because I believe that it matters.
Knowing Our Times / May 22, 2019
The past is filled with stories; facts that have changed the lives of people in that time and through time as we continue to exist with these facts. But what happens when our conditions keep changing with time? Will facts still hold true from the past to the present or to the potential future?
Knowing our times means being awake on our different realities -- recognizing the conditions that are causing changes as a result. History is not objective but rather interpretative. It is empathy of the conditions based on when and where it took place and how or whom are being affected.
It is empathy for humanity and the world around us that creates impactful change that last through time.
Tell Your Story and Own It / May 23, 2019
Do you mean, where I came from -- where I lived? What I do? What I am passionate about, the things I value and believe in? Who I love? Knowing who we are goes back through time and leads to a series of events and conditions; when we engage ourselves with other people, how do we see them? It is very easy to look at a person based on their apparent image or on our own perspectives and not theirs. The thing is, we are all different. We didn't chose where and how our lives began. Knowing what kind of life we hope for and the person we hope to be, and taking actions and accountability for this, this is what matters, and it is very important in finding and creating our own path.
We are all just a series of ideas about ourselves. When we get to experience them, the ideas became who we are. Even if we don't, the sunlight is still a part of sun, so no matter how far our ideas wander, it's still part of who we are. So be honest and be genuine, no one has ever lived a life the way you did -- so tell your stories and own them. Be a lesson for someone and let them teach you a lesson.
Who am I? I am you in a different space, different time, in a different life. I am everyone.
Parting Paths and the Creation of Endless Moving Stories / May 24, 2019
Stories had been told -- places in time, passions in action, moving hopes, thoughts, provoking insights -- to people who were willing to listen and share their own ideas and point of view which formed an environment that created a transcendent experience not just for me but for everyone who had been part of it.
Days have passed and now we will be parting into different horizons, but whichever side we wander and whatever we hope to do, our shared perspectives and experience created a connection that will now always be with us.
An impact in action. It's all about building genuine relationships and environments with respect, empathy, understanding and commitment to greater, meaningful lives for everyone. This is what I'm taking home with me and for my people.