Submitted: Fairhope World Affairs

The tenth year of World Affairs Roundtable fall series begins on October 3, 2018. The roundtable is a program that promotes "thoughtful, respectful, open and facilitated discussions on contemporary topics.” The fall series will have facilitators leading discussions about NASA and Global Space Relationships and The Future of US Global Trade.  Free, and open to the public, the programs are held at the Fairhope public library in the Giddens Conference Center. All sessions are posted on the library website.

In 2008, two local residents, Dick Westmoreland, a retired engineer and international business executive and Dr. Glen Stephenson, a retired professor of geography started the roundtable discussions on the premise that many gulf coast residents wanted to have a better understanding of our interconnected world. They also knew that this area is home to numerous individuals with global experience and education whose insights could be shared in roundtable discussions. Since 2008, the World Affairs Roundtable has sponsored 39 discussions about contemporary global issues.

The fall series will lead off on October 3rdand 17th from 2pm to 4pm, with a discussion of NASA and Global Space Relationships.

Kristen Sarowski is a NASA Solar System Ambassador. The Solar System Ambassadors Program is a public outreach program of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. More than 700 volunteers in all 50 states as well as Washington DC, Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, and Guam share information about exploration missions and recent discoveries to their local communities. The discussions will cover the history of NASA—from competition (e.g. Sputnik, Space race, etc.) to cooperation (Space Shuttle, cooperative missions with other countries, the International Space Station) and the future in global space exploration. Ms. Sarowski is a scientist with Parsons Corporation in Mobile, Alabama.

The second discussion in the fall series will focus on the Future of US Global Trade: Extend Growth or Increase Restrictions?  This program will be presented on October 24th and 31st by Dr. Sevints Nuriyeva, Associate Professor of Global Business and Management at the University of Mobile. The first session will address the basics of global trade (imports/exports, foreign direct investment, free trade, trade agreements and the role of the World Trade organization). The second session will focus on U.S. global trade trends, problems, and opportunities including the impact of global trade on the Gulf Coast area.

The World Affairs Roundtable draws its facilitators from subject matter experts who reside in Fairhope and the nearby neighboring gulf coast communities. We are always looking for facilitators to present discussions on current global topics. If interested, please contact the steering committee at worldaffairsroundtable@gmail.com.

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