Holy Innocents' Episcopal School welcomed Argentina’s Consul General to the Southeast, to campus, this week.
Speaking to HIES students, including 12 exchange students, the Honorable Marcelo Gerschenfeld explained how they could become diplomats themselves.
“Major in something like history or international relations,” he said. “When I was at the University of Buenos Aires, I decided to specialize in international economics. I entered the Foreign Service in Argentina, and now I can serve in either an embassy or a consulate (which provides services such as issuing visas).”
“It is a wonderful job if you like a gypsy life,” he added.
Gerschenfeld also advised learning different languages, such as Mandarin and French, which used to be regarded as the international language. “Try to start speaking another language even if you make mistakes,” he suggested. “Immerse yourself in it. Languages are a question of practice.”
Accompanying Gerschenfeld was Guillermo Arduino, a CNN anchor and show host who has been in the United States for 17 years. Arduino urged the Argentinian exchange students, particularly, to be open to change and differences in other countries. “This is an important step in your life. You’ll see a different culture and perhaps a different religion. I’m not only bilingual now but bicultural and that’s a huge advantage in my life,” he said. “These experiences that you are going to go through will enrich your lives forever.
Gerschenfeld made the trip to HIES to emphasize the importance of bilingual education, global knowledge and relationships between the United States and Argentina, said Gerard Gatoux, Upper School Spanish and French teacher.
The Consul General is a veteran diplomat, having served in Africa, Europe, and the Middle East, as well as in the Foreign Ministry in Buenos Aires. He has also held posts in Israel, Belgium, Russia, Switzerland, and the Ivory Coast. Gerschenfeld became Consul General to the Southeast, based in Atlanta, in 2009.