Where are you from? What’s important in your area? Find answers to these questions by plugging into your local community. Attend a meeting of your school board or city council; volunteer at a food pantry, or take time to visit the local animal shelter. How you choose to get involved tells the world who you are and what you believe.
Perhaps no skill is more valuable than the ability to work collectively toward a common goal. Participate in a group effort like a Habitat for Humanity project, and notice how those around you give the best of themselves in service to the greater good. This is what it means to collaborate.
The purpose of communication is to bring people closer together. In an increasingly complex world, the speaking and writing skills you develop today will distinguish you from your peers and serve you well for years to come. Get connected to your local IU campus, and find out what activities are available by using the IU events calendar. Practice your communication skills by interacting with people from diverse backgrounds. This invites learning moments and helps to decrease cross-cultural misunderstandings.
You practice critical thinking every time your mind works through a problem logically, rationally, and intentionally. Try simple activities such as keeping a journal of daily challenges in your life and how you might overcome them. This skill isn’t about WHAT you think, but rather HOW you think.
One major difference between this passport and an official one issued by the government is that while the traveling version contains stamps from each new destination, the pages of this booklet don’t represent destinations on ANY level. To the contrary, a token placed in your IU passport signifies only that you’ve taken the next step on a journey that truly has no end. Make no mistake, cultural understanding is one of those skills you’ll be practicing for life. Our planet is 75% covered by water; the rest is filled with bold, bright, beautiful cultures just waiting to be explored. Set aside some time to learn about a heritage other than your own, or celebrate another culture by participating in an educational, cultural, or social program at your school or local community.
It’s no secret – college can be expensive. Educate yourself about the total cost of attendance and programs like Indiana’s 21st Century Scholarship. Most importantly, TAKE CHARGE of financing your education: check out our award-winning Money Smarts website for key information and activities designed to sharpen your planning and boost your financial IQ. Start earning scholarship support for achievements you accomplish in high school thru RaiseMe.
Practicing this skill requires self-motivation. Take the initiative TODAY and attend an online webinar, or visit a local library to research a topic of interest. With this activity, the only limit is your own imagination. So think about what interests you, then take it upon yourself to learn more.
Innovators excel at finding a way when others can’t. Open your mind, allow yourself to see beyond the world we live in, and tour a local Makerspace or other facility specializing in creative solutions. At NASA they say, “If it is possible, it is done; if it is impossible, it will be done.” THAT is the spirit of innovation.
Media are all around us. They’re the platforms we need to communicate, the tools we use to share experiences, and the materials we mold to express who we are. A medium can be anything from your favorite website or TV show to the paints and products you use at school. Explore the concept of media through PBS Student Reporting Labs, or stoke your creativity by producing a podcast or animated story.
The best problem-solvers appreciate the opportunity every hardship presents. Thomas Edison famously declared his initial attempts to invent the modern light bulb weren’t failures at all; rather, he said, “I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Try and apply Edison’s mindset as you research different kinds of puzzles at the library or visit a recycling center or local solid waste district.