“Global citizen” is a phrase loosely used to describe a person who is becoming a part of the speedily developing world community, someone whose actions contribute greatly to the structure of the community’s values and practices. However, it is more than just being a community server or contributing to the greater society. Being a global citizen depends mostly on the person.
There needs to be some degree to which you are personally practicing these values so as to fully engage with a true understanding of global citizenship. One such person is Isaac Fast, a 2013 GC graduate currently living in Sacramento, California.
Goshen College has been celebrated for its five core values—Christ-centered, passionate learning, servant leadership, compassionate peacemaking and global citizenship.
“I know that Isaac passionately follows the core values of Goshen College,” said Pat Lehman, professor of communication.
Fast studied journalism, with a focus in photography during the time that he spent here at Goshen College. He is continuing his passion for photography with his new start at his photography company called Isaac Fast Photography. He has had the opportunity to shoot “weddings, high school senior pictures and even airplanes in flight,” said Fast.
In September of 2014, Fast made a trip to Nicaragua with Goshen College Spanish professor, Maria Schrich, who connected him to a friend living in Managua, Nicaragua. Through this connection he got the opportunity to teach at the University of the Caribbean Coast. Fast was then able to practice his Spanish and teach college students about “photography for social change” by spreading the importance of passionate learning to others so that they are able to give more to society. “I was teaching about lines, shapes, lighting and other photography concepts,” said Fast.
“The students had never had an art or photography class before,” said Fast. He has been a fervent teacher in this particular setting, with emphasis on cross-cultural interactions. Fast is trying to use photography to be able to talk about things that are plaguing that specific community, such as the environmental and political issues that affect their area.
Fast has been able to exemplify the definition of a global citizenship through his recent involvement with AmeriCorps NCCC (National Civilian Community Corps), a volunteer organization supported by the U.S. federal government foundations, engaging people in service work. Fast is presently working on a project in Death Valley National Park in California and will soon be in Idaho preparing Girl Scout summer camps.
“I’ve become much more patient and adaptable,” said Fast. “Working in a diverse group of people can be really tough, and I’ve gotten a strong lesson in patience because of it.”
He feels as though this experience has really changed him for the better. The ability to go out in the world and blend in well no matter where he is placed. Fast encourages other people to get out of their comfort zone and see what is really out there for them.
“Never give up your ideals—when people say ‘that’s just how it is,’ don’t accept that. They are likely not creative problem solvers. If you are passionate about something, go work for it!” said Fast.
There is so much power and knowledge just waiting to be discovered! It just takes a little motivation and faith.