Michael Shie
Culture Commissioner

I am a third-year Economics student at University College, and an international student. As an open commissioner, I work alongside the other commissioners to research through focus groups and online forms and develop recommendations for the Culture Commission’s Report. My passion includes intercultural dialogue and awareness to promote the appreciation of diversity between individuals, to enrich community. Hailing from South East Asia – a melting pot of culture – I am aware of the enriching experience of diversity within communities; yet I am also aware of the profound impact culture can have on an individual’s identity and the need to be respectful and appreciative of one another.

My experience includes my former role as Inter-Collegiate and Societies Coordinator in the International Students’ Association (ISA), where I contributed to the organization of ISA’s first Lunar New Year event in the Great Hall of Durham Castle and International Week 2020 which sought to celebrate the diverse culture within Durham University. Further, I co-introduced the ‘We are Internationals’ campaign which provided an opportunity to showcase stories of international students, similar to Humans of New York. Beyond that, I also serve as Vice President for the Brunei Students’ Union of United Kingdom and ‘Eire and was a delegate at KAICIID (Vienna) Intercultural Dialogue, where the circle process was used, essentially underlining the importance of listening and respecting one another’s experience.

Through my role as an Open Commissioner, I hope to listen to the diverse experiences of individuals and groups that make Durham University what it is; and to promote a culture that is inclusive and appreciative of the experience of one another, enriching the Durham community.

If you would like to get in touch with me, please do not hesitate to contact me at michael.shie@durham.ac.uk.