At VIS, it is at our very core to inspire our students to not only learn within their curriculum but also further their horizons co-curricular to their academics. Taking positive actions within communities and around the globe has been a central focus while we try to educate lifelong and dedicated learners who lead by example and we are always looking for opportunities to invite guests to further inspire our students.
As part of our ongoing Global Citizenship Project, we were very fortunate to host Melissa Fleming, Under-Secretary-General at the United Nations in New York at Vienna International School on Wednesday October 13. Mrs. Fleming gave an inspirational talk to our G11/12 students and talked about her own experience of being a global citizen in an interconnected world.
Early on, Melissa Fleming started off her career as a Journalist and Public Affairs specialist in Munich. A path that eventually led her to further her work in communications at prestigious organisations such as OSCE and soon after the IAEA where she served as Head of Press and Public Information as well as Head of Media and Outreach respectively. Her personal mission is to „promote a more peaceful, sustainable, just and humane world“ which has not only been contained to her work with the UN but has spread throughout all her other endeavours.
Melissa Fleming is a frequent guest on renowned international media channels including TED talks where she uses her platform to „shed light on the devastating plight and remarkable resilience of refugees“. This topic is especially dear to her heart and led her to write and publish the book „a hope more powerful than the sea“ - One Refugee's Incredible Story of Love, Loss, and Survival.
Additionally, Mrs. Fleming is hosting her very own award-winning podcast "Awake at Night". In it she is sharing more about her journey and stories working with the United Nations. In her podcast, she not only talks about her own experiences but also invites health workers, humanitarians, human rights advocates and peacekeepers to share their knowledge with the world.
We were truly honoured to welcome Melissa Fleming back on our campus this week, not only in her role as Under-Secretary-General but also as a former VIS parent herself.