Around the World, Here at Home

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See archives of this program below, where you're taken somewhere new in the world as we interview an Ozarks resident who was born in a different country.  Learn about other cultures, traditions, and the diversity we have here in the Ozarks. Around the World, Here and Home discontinued production in 2014. See archives below.

Belgian Teenager Finds Ozarks People Kind, Their Hobbies 'Odd'

Jul 14, 2014
Jennifer Davidson, KSMU

Good morning, and welcome to Around the World, Here at Home. I’m Jennifer Davidson. In today’s interview, we travel to a country about the size of Maryland. It was occupied by Germany during both World Wars and its capital, Brussels, is home to numerous organizations, including the EU and NATO:  it’s Belgium.   Joining us to talk about her home country—and her experiences here in the Ozarks—is Marie Vanderelst, who just finished a year as an exchange student at West Plains High School.

Today, we’re looking at a country that’s unique among its African neighbors in that, except for a brief time under Italian occupation, it remained independent through the era of colonization—and that independence stretches back over 2,000 years: Ethiopia. 


Dr. Dawit Weldemichael, a psychiatrist with Ozarks Medical Center in West Plains, grew up in Addis Ababa, the capital city. He was a studious child, he says – unlike most children in his city.

“We don’t have any restrictions in Ethiopia. A child is born, you find him on the street [playing],” he said.

Good morning, and welcome to Around the World, Here at Home on KSMU.

Today, we hear the remarkable story of a woman who was born near the Baltic Sea, in the independent country of Latvia.  Ilga Vise is well known in Springfield for her years at Drury University, Missouri State, and as a volunteer with the League of Women Voters and other causes. She’s also someone very special to me as a friend and a mentor.

She still remembers the vivid scene from her childhood in Latvia when the Gypsy wagons rolled into town once a year.

Welcome to Around the World, Here at Home. I’m Jennifer Davidson. Today, we highlight the country with the second largest population in the world: over one billion people.  It has 14 official languages, but hundreds of others thrive, too.   It borders the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal, and rises to the majestic Himalaya Mountains in the north.  Hinduism is the way of life for most, but Muslims, Christians and Sikhs, too, have a huge presence here:  India.

I spoke with Protima and Rabindra Roy, both longtime professors at Drury University in Springfield.

Good morning, and welcome to Around the World, Here at Home.  I’m Jennifer Davidson.  This morning, we’ll hear about the country that's geographically the second largest in Europe—one that was, in the 10th and 11th centuries, the  center of the most powerful Slavic state in Europe:  Ukraine. Under Soviet rule, Ukraine endured two forced famines, before finally gaining its independence in 1991.