Student Spotlight: Gabrielle Moran

Student Spotlight: Gabrielle Moran

Kathryn Daigle ‘17, Assistant Editor

Global awareness is not just an asset; it is an enriching experience, being aware of the world around you and having a greater appreciation and love for humankind.” – Gabrielle Moran

     Few students would choose to spend their summer break working hard with deeply challenging material. Then again, few students are as driven and goal-oriented as Gabby Moran. Gabby is a junior this year at Oakland Catholic and is highly involved in many global education programs, including (but certainly not limited to) Model UN and Ms. McNulty’s Global Competence Initiative. Over her summer break, she attended the University of Pittsburgh and the World Affairs of Pittsburgh’s summer seminar on global issues. For three weeks, she focused her intellect on issues such as climate change policy, global health, and human rights.

     After these intense weeks, Gabby went back to her grade school (St. Bede) in order to apply what she had learned. She analyzed every book that directly addresses human rights in St. Bede’s library and sought to see how the books reflected the articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. She also took it a step further to see how the books agreed with the Roman Catholic teachings on human rights. After working at her former grade school she began working in her current school community (Oakland Catholic) to advance the Female Leadership Initiative.

     How would she describe her intense and busy summer?She would definitely describe it as “very productive and inviting”. Gabby told me: “I feel that this summer was filled with incredible experiences that supported my interests and allowed me not only to engage in those interests but to take what I learned and apply it to my alma mater and current school community.” Plans for her future include continuing her education at a college or university in order to study international diplomacy with a specialization in human rights law and international security.

     However, Gabby believes that her end goal is not simply getting into a strong college and landing a satisfying job;  it has to be bigger than that. The ultimate goal is to contribute to society with God-given talents. Programs even here at OC, such as GCI, really aid students to begin to do just that. It goes beyond the humanities, since a globally competent mindset is a necessity in every field, from world affairs, to education, to the STEM programs.

     But what if someone wants to be globally aware but isn’t sure that they have enough time to give it? No worries! It all starts with becoming aware of the issues, as Gabby says. Start by reading the morning briefing in the New York Times, or get breaking news notifications on your phone. Obviously it goes so much farther than that, but those steps are a good start towards being globally aware.

     The benefits of being tuned in to the world around us are endless. As Gabby puts it, “Global awareness is not just an asset; it is an enriching experience, being aware of the world around you and having a greater appreciation and love for humankind. I think it allows you to see similarities that you share with people across the globe instead of focusing on the differences. Being globally aware allows you to put yourself in other people’s shoes. It calls for more compassion. It makes you realize that we cannot throw responsibility to the powers that be. I am just as much a global citizen as Obama, or Hillary Clinton, or Xi Jinping, or Angela Merkel, or the Queen of England, especially in the democratic society in which we live. Being globally aware allows you to realize that I am responsible for working towards a better and safer world for humanity.”

     Gabby’s journey into global awareness may have highlighted her summer, but it will continue for the rest of her life.