The Bolles Bugle

The Bolles Bugle

The Bolles Bugle

Bolles makes a Great Decision to implement cultural conversations


The world is currently in a state of conflict. There is a rise in global controversies and battles. From the war in Ukraine to the Israel-Palestine conflict, global competency and understanding is more important than ever.  


A long time organization (but new addition to Bolles) facilitates a place to have these necessary conversations about the state of the world. This organization, which is connected to Jacksonville’s World Affairs council, is the Great Decisions program.


This group is a combination of students from all grades, along with the sponsor, Ms. Edmonson, and the conversation mediator, David Schwaim-Baird, a former professor of International Politics at UNF. They meet once a month in order to discuss a certain topic, and so far this year there have been two meetings. The first discussed oil and the economy around the world and the most recent conversation discussed China and its relationship with the U.S. 


In order to prepare for each meeting, the students read short articles from FPA (Foreign Policy Association). These articles give background information and a basic foundation for the meeting’s conversation.  


During the meeting’s discussion on China, the participants talked about various subjects from political and social issues in Hong Kong to the possible invasion of Taiwan. All while connecting topics back to the U.S. and how they will affect day to day life. 


Outside of the monthly meetings, there are opportunities for a more panel-like discussion. The program provides students the opportunity to attend discussions led by speakers on a variety of topics. The talks are mostly led by authors or experts on the topic. During these conversations, the speaker presents topics giving the students a deeper understanding of topics that might be discussed in future subjects. 


The first out of school conversation was with author Walter Isaacson and his book Elon Musk. He discussed his book and Musk’s effect on the world. 


Abby Bradley ‘25, a member of the Global Scholar Program, mentioned why she thinks this program is important. “These conversations are vital to have if we want to make a positive impact in the world because the first step to solving any problem is actually knowing the problem and any context.” 


Bradley also commented that the appeal of the program stems from the desire for a greater global insight and being taught about different perspectives. 


Participant Alexiya Downer ‘25 said, “I believe that having global conversations is important because if we can understand what is happening around the world and why, then we will be able to address the issues effectively and solve the issues efficiently.”

About the Contributor
Kate Youell
Kate Youell, Social Media Editor
Kate Youell is a junior, third-year staffer, and the current Social Media Editor. When she's not in school she is working backstage at different performances, volunteering for the Jacksonville Jaguars and traveling with Children's International Sumer Villages (CISV). And she is proud of how much effort she puts into each of her activities.