#BizVoiceExtra: International School Impresses

I’d heard of the International School of Indiana long before I had the chance to visit for a story in the current edition of BizVoice®, but really didn’t have any idea of the school’s mission as it was founded in Indianapolis over 20 years ago.

Now I can’t stop relating to it.

As you can read here in the story in our March/April edition of BizVoice, the school was created in 1994 to offer an international education option for families of foreign executives and since that time has become known for offering one of the most rigorous curriculums for students in Indiana. The high school has a 100% graduation rate and a 100% college acceptance rate and last year’s class of graduating seniors (there were 42 of them) was offered $6 million in merit scholarships.

I toured both the lower school (ages three up through grades five) and upper school (grades six through 12) and walked through classrooms of pre-kindergarten children learning Mandarin, Spanish and French and was blown away by the poise and passion of high school students speaking about their experiences with the school.

Seeing today that the city of Indianapolis has received a final license from the World Trade Centers Association to establish a World Trade Center in the city makes me think of the International School. While the school was established nearly 25 years ago, the founding mission is still relevant in offering an international curriculum to students in Indiana (whether local students or those from other nations).

I was also reminded of the school when I recently visited a friend in San Francisco and met numerous people – from my friends’ housemates from Russia, to one of our Lyft drivers from Algiers – who were multilingual.

While I was accidentally interviewing (yes – it’s a hazard of my job) that Lyft driver from Algiers, I asked him what language is dominant there and was thinking the answer would be French. It was but, in addition, he listed two others I’d never heard of. English is his fourth language.

The students at the International School are also able to learn up to four languages, right here in central Indiana. It’s the only school in the Midwest with a trilingual option, in addition to English.

As Indiana continues to make a name for itself around the world, seeing the impact of the International School up close and personal was enlightening and – as I’ve mentioned – sticks with you.

My Day in NYC on 9/11

It’s hard to believe it’s been a decade since the world as we knew it – one in which terrorism was scarcely given much thought – was turned upside down.

A native Hoosier, I had moved to Connecticut three years prior to the attacks and commuted daily to my job in New York City. These are my personal recollections from that day.

… Many of us went to the windows that pointed south toward the World Trade Center. It was one thing seeing it on TV, but to look out and see firsthand the large plumes of smoke was completely surreal.

Unease was officially setting in throughout the office. 

My mind was playing what-ifs and drifting to my two recent visits to the Twin Towers complex in as many weeks: One for pleasure – shopping at the vast underground center – and the other a breakfast business meeting at the Marriott hotel, which sat between both towers and was connected to them….

Full story here.

Nation Stops to Mourn Tragedy

Seven years after the tragic events that unfolded in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001, many across the nation have stopped to pay homage to those who lost their lives in the terrorist attacks. Chief among the demonstrations was the one that occurred today in Manhattan:

Among the speakers were three who were young children when their fathers went to work at the World Trade Center seven years ago and never came home. The children are now about 10, 11 and 13.

"I remember playing in the yard with him. I remember him pulling my wagon. He was strong. He always made me feel safe," said Alex Salamone, wearing the soccer jersey of his father, John. "I wish I could remember more, but we were so young when he died."

Locally, the United Way of Central Indiana and its seventh annual Community Fair used the tragedy to remind Hoosiers of the importance of volunteering.