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Travel Talk

Each month in the fall and spring the World Affairs Council Tacoma presents Travel Talk, a series featuring provocative speakers, fascinating countries, and important issues from around the globe.

Both members and the public are invited to attend Travel Talk free of charge. All talks are hosted by Annie Wright Schools in Tacoma unless otherwise noted. Click here for directions to Annie Wright Schools.

Each presentation will begin at 7:00 PM and run until roughly 8:30 PM. Click show details on the events below to learn more about our upcoming events!


A crowd watches a powerpoint presentation during the April 2018 Travel Talk on Catalonia

We want to thank Seasons Travel for sponsoring the 2017-2018 Travel Talks.

Seasons Travel Logo


Upcoming Talks

    • Wednesday, April 24, 2019
    • 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
    • The Fireside Room - St. Patrick Parish Center 1001 North J Street, Tacoma WA 98403


    Father Zvonko Martic is a Carmelite Priest, with a Doctorate of Cultural Anthropology and a Monastery Prior. To the government of Bosnia & Herzegovina, he is a Guardian of National Treasures and a scholar who explores interreligious practices.  To him, the love of God and people always comes first.

    Hear Father Martić speak on Wednesday, April 24th at 7:00 PM at The Fireside Room (the room with the fireplace!) in St. Patrick Parish Center 1001 North J Street, Tacoma.

    You can also see the film at the Blue Mouse on Saturday, April 26th at 2 pm as part of the Tacoma Sister Cities Film Festival.

    All Travel Talks are free and open to the public - no RSVP is necessary!

    Father Zvonko Martić dedicates his life to celebrating and preserving traditional Croatian music and clothing, bringing  valuable pieces of lace or cataloguing another traditional Croatian, Serbian or Bosniak garment in the Monastery’s museum of folk costumes and artifacts. He organizes concerts, exhibitions, and professional gatherings at Saint Elijah Monastery at Busko Lake, BiH. In 2016, 35 members of the Tacoma Symphony Choir performed at his Monastery, reveling in the presence of this remarkable man. His work has been highlighted in the film, The Flying Friar, which premiered at the Margaret Mead Film Festival in New York in October 2018.

    You can view the facebook event for this Travel Talk here.

    • Wednesday, May 15, 2019
    • 7:00 PM - 8:30 PM
    • The Great Hall, Annie Wright Schools, Tacoma WA 98403


    As an Indian immigrant living in the US, Syed Jamal will share some of his local, lived-experiences in India and how America continues to shape those experiences. He will speak about collective and individualistic cultures that separate two countries – India and USA. With the use of pictures and videos, this interactive session would focus on storytelling to introduce a "local India" that our audience may not know.

    This Travel Talk will take place on May 15 at 7:00 p.m. at Annie Wright Schools

    All Travel Talks are free and open to the public - no RSVP is necessary!

    Syed K Jamal is the Founder and CEO of Branta which focuses on internationalization of experiences and institutions. He leads the firm’s focus on innovation, partnerships, and client impact. His professional experience includes work in the diverse areas of media, academia, and international education. He first came to the US as an International Ford Foundation Fellow, so he brings his own experience as an international student into his vision for Branta.  His interest in cross-cultural collaborations and global citizenry continue to shape his professional pursuits.

    In 2010, Syed took a communications position at India’s Fulbright Commission for the U.S. Department of State’s public diplomacy program, EducationUSA. In his role as Communications Manager, Syed spearheaded EducationUSA’s digital outreach and partnerships. He led several recruitment programs, public diplomacy outreach with US Foreign Service Officers, and many workshops.

    After EducationUSA, Syed began consulting for a variety of youth and higher education organizations both in India and in the US. In 2015, he moved to the US and founded Branta, which works with universities, colleges, startups, and recruitment organizations in the US and Canada, as well as youth-focused organizations in India.

    He recently hosted the City of Tacoma and the World Trade Center-Tacoma in India on an economic and cultural exchange tour intended to promote Tacoma as an international technology and innovation hub.  Syed's interests include cultural exchange, international educational technology, youth development, entrepreneurship, and social media. He tweets here. As a trained filmmaker, he serves on the Board of Advisors of The Way Home: Journey of Family and Faith, a documentary film about three generations of Tibetan women in exile fighting to save their cultural heritage.


Past events

Wednesday, March 20, 2019 Travel Talk: Women, Work and the Legacy of Slavery in Mauritania
Wednesday, February 20, 2019 Travel Talk: Family Cultural Immersion in Croatia
Wednesday, January 16, 2019 Travel Talk: Mongolia: Remote, Isolated and Mysterious No More
Wednesday, November 28, 2018 Travel Talk: Rock 'n' Roll and the Iron Curtain
Wednesday, November 14, 2018 Travel Talk: Emerging Beyond French Colonialism into the 21st Century
Wednesday, October 17, 2018 Travel Talk: Israel and Palestine: An American-Muslim Experience
Wednesday, September 19, 2018 Travel Talk: Two Countries Impact World Culture
Wednesday, May 16, 2018 Travel Talk: “It’s nice to be nice!” Cross-Cultural Communication, Work and Adventures in The Gambia
Wednesday, April 18, 2018 Travel Talk: Holy Catalonia! The Surge for Independence from Spain
Wednesday, February 28, 2018 Travel Talk: Traveling China Through Wine
Wednesday, January 17, 2018 Travel Talk: Seeking The Booby: My Adventure in the Galapagos Islands
Wednesday, December 13, 2017 Travel Talk: Mingalabar! On the Road to Mandalay
Wednesday, November 15, 2017 Travel Talk: Exploring Taiwan: A Nation in the Balance
Wednesday, October 18, 2017 Travel Talk: A Misunderstood People: Some Thoughts on Fulbrighting in Russia and Meeting Everyday Russians
Wednesday, May 17, 2017 Travel Talk: From There to Here: International Students Journey to the United States
Wednesday, April 19, 2017 Travel Talk: The Adventures and Wisdom from a Gap Year Student
Wednesday, March 15, 2017 Travel Talk: Travel with Restriction: Iran
Wednesday, February 15, 2017 Travel Talk: Travel With Purpose
Wednesday, January 18, 2017 Travel Talk: Here, There and Back Again
Wednesday, December 14, 2016 Travel Talk: Antarctica: Cleaning Up After Science
Wednesday, November 16, 2016 Travel Talk: Morocco: The Muslim Kingdom by the Sea
Wednesday, October 19, 2016 Travel Talk: Indian Ocean: Scientific Expedition
Wednesday, May 18, 2016 Travel Talk: Slovakia: Little Tiger of Europe
Wednesday, April 20, 2016 Travel Talk: Nepal Service and Study Tour
Wednesday, March 16, 2016 Travel Talk: “Inside Cuba: An In-depth Island Journey"
Wednesday, February 17, 2016 Travel Talk: “Finland: A Personal Reflection"
Thursday, January 21, 2016 Travel Talk: “The Lost World of Venezuela"
Wednesday, December 09, 2015 Travel Talk: "Elves to Equality: A Journey Through Iceland"
Wednesday, November 18, 2015 Travel Talk: Orphans Africa: Tacoma to Tanzania
Wednesday, October 21, 2015 Travel Talk: Nicaragua: An Appreciative Inquiry Perspective
Wednesday, September 16, 2015 Travel Talk: Diplomacy 101: Running In China
Thursday, May 21, 2015 Travel Talk: Traveling to Save the World
Wednesday, April 15, 2015 Travel Talk: My Life as an Older Peace Corps Volunteer
Wednesday, March 18, 2015 Travel Talk: Maternal Care in India
Thursday, January 22, 2015 Travel Talk: My Travels Through Museums Around the World
Wednesday, December 10, 2014 Travel Talk: Around the Table: Supporting Women In Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia
Wednesday, November 19, 2014 Travel Talk: Working from Anywhere in the World
Wednesday, October 15, 2014 Travel Talk: The Penguin Glow

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