Director General Richard Filion goes to India
by Chole Nudo
Dawson’s Director General Richard Filion, along with 130 other Canadians from various fields of work, traveled to India for a week to exchange ideas about Canadian and Indian cultures.
The group left January 31 and stayed until February 7 traveling 3 000 kilometers in seven days through the cities of Mumbai, Bangalore, and New Delhi.
Each city is known for a certain area of expertise, Mumbai being the financial hub, Bangalore’s specialty being technology and New Delhi as India’s administrative capital.
“Mainly we’re trying to find a way to share what we know and get from them what they can give us,” Filion said. The goal of the trip was to have an exchange of culture and to learn from one another and to explore the opportunity of partnerships.
Canada went to offer its expertise in the educational sector and met with over twenty colleges and organizations. The group went on to offer training to teachers in India and a possible teacher exchange.
“The challenge India faces is to educate the vast majority of people to develop skills for modern economy,” said Filion. “With a growing population and an emerging economy, India has a great opportunity to develop as a country.”
Filion explained how with this modern economy, more technological advances are being made and must be met with people who know how to properly use them. In high demand are the rising markets for video games, animation and video arts.
“India is a fascinating country,” said Filion, explaining that the trip to him was a “deep cultural and spiritual experience.” He encourages students to travel abroad, and with the contacts made in India the possibility of a student exchange program is among short-term goals. Filion hopes to bring students to many parts of India including the slums where he hopes they can contribute by offering social services.
“It was an opportunity to rediscover what I was pretty passionate for when I was 18 or 20 studying Indian philosophy,” Filion said.
He is keen on the idea of students traveling abroad for educational opportunities or just to do social work. If you are interested in these opportunities you can speak with Mr. Filion in his office of 4D.1-5.