Tag Archives: University of Washington

How can we tell better stories about the EU?

Microsoft’s Chief Storyteller

Steve ClaytonI met this week with Steve Clayton, “chief storyteller” at Microsoft.

A few years ago, Steve was working at the company’s offices in Reading.  His job involved talking with startups and small tech companies based in London.  Many of the people he met viewed Microsoft as dull and conservative.  This clashed with Steve’s sense from within the company that a lot of his colleagues were actually doing some pretty cool and innovative things.

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American students quiz MEPs

Debating Europe Schools

One of the things I love about digital media is their capacity to bridge geographical divides, establishing new connections between people who would be unlikely to cross paths in the offline world.

So I was delighted to be able to offer my students here at the University of Washington in Seattle an opportunity to put questions directly to Members of the European Parliament.

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West Coast Model EU

The University of Washington hosted the “West Coast Model EU” in Seattle on 22-23 February 2013.

More than 60 students attended, representing Universities from across the Pacific North West.  They had an opportunity to deepen their understanding of the European Union by participating in simulated negotiations.  The themes chosen for the 2013 edition included the reform of EU Cohesion Policy, Banking Union and EU own resources.

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Looking at Europe through American eyes

Task Force Students

UW students getting to grips with European integration!

Two things have particularly impressed me during my first two weeks as a European Union Fellow at the University of Washington.

The first is the warm welcome and useful advice I have received from the people I am working with at the University, particularly Phil Shekleton and his colleagues at the Jackson School of International Studies.

The second is how interested and well informed both faculty and students are here about events thousands of kilometres away in the European Union.  The breadth and depth of their knowledge is impressive, although clearly the Euro crisis continues to dominate both the press coverage and public image of the EU on this side of the Atlantic.

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Getting started at the University of Washington

Jackson School of International Studies

My workplace for the next six months – Jackson School of International Studies

The winter term starts today at the University of Washington (UW), where I will be spending the next 6 months as an EU Fellow.  Founded in 1861, the University is one of the oldest and largest on the West Coast of the USA.  It is also one of 10 US Universities that host an “EU Center of Excellence” designed to promote teaching and research on EU affairs.

The University has been pretty quiet since I arrived a few days ago in the middle of the winter break.  I’ve enjoyed exploring the impressive facilities and picturesque campus on the shores of Union Bay, close to downtown Seattle.  I have also had some interesting first exchanges with the new colleagues I will be working with at the Jackson School of International Studies.

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Filed under EU, Fellowship Programme, USA