TCKs of Asia: Language, Family & Power – #FIGT2021

I’ll be speaking on a panel with four others at the Families in Global Transition Virtual Conference 2021.

TCKs of Asia: Language, Family & Power
‘TCKs of Asia: Language, Family & Power’ at the Families in Global Transition Conference, 12-14 March

TCKs of Asia: Language, Family & Power

We’re quite proud of this panel. We’ll talk about aspects of the Third Culture Kid experience that are rarely talked about.

We’ll talk about how the experience of mobility in childhood varies depending on their backgrounds – cultural, linguistic, racial, class and so on.

The panel is made up of Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese and Indonesian-Japanese TCKs. So, we’ll also touch upon a topic that is considered sensitive in the region. The elephant in the room.

We’ll talk about the way the history of the region affects how children interact with each other.

As adults, it’s important that we set an example on how to maintain friendships & connect meaningfully even when we are from different sides of history. I’m particularly proud of how we cover this.

And by ‘we’, I mean:

Isabelle Min, CEO & Founder of Transition Catalyst Korea (TCK) Institute and former radio host and television broadcaster for KBS. Founder of FIGT Korea Affiliate.

Aiko Minematsu, Co-Founder of the FIGT Japan Affiliate & a university lecturer in Tokyo

Saeko Mizuta, Founder & CEO of TCK Workshop. Co-Founder of FIGT Japan Affiliate

Danau Tanu, Research Fellow and author of Growing Up in Transit: The Politics of Belonging at an International School 

Jane W. Wang, Founder & Coach at Multicultural Hero’s Journey 

Hope to see you at the conference! Also, lookout for the TCK Coffee & Connect sessions in the conference community rooms.

To register for the Families in Global Transition Conference 2021, visit their website here.

Conference registrations close on March 10. Pre-conference Forums have started.

*By the way, ‘Power Panel’ sounds rather grand but it’s the name of the type of panel at the conference.

TCK Vocations & Career—Spotlight Interview with Among Worlds magazine

I am feeling very grateful to be featured for the Spotlight Interview in the December issue of the third culture kid magazine, Among Worlds.

In this interview, I talk about how I felt like an immigrant kid while going to an international school because I was Western by day and Asian by night. I also talk about how I engaged with the term ‘third culture kids’, as well as the importance of paying attention to not just the ‘movers’ but the ‘stayers’ too in international schools and help TCKs connect with the local place where they live.

I am in incredibly good company no less! The December issue of Among Worlds focuses on TCK Vocations & Careers with articles by many established writers, coaches, and so on in the TCK world. Some articles are practical and others heartwarming.

Some offer tips for TCKs looking to build their careers. These might be especially useful for younger TCKs who are just starting out or those who feel ‘stuck’ in their careers. See the articles by:

  • Amanda Bates of The Black Expat,
  • Michael Pollock who is the co-author of Third Culture Kids: Growing Up Among Worlds & Executive Director of Interaction International,
  • Tim Sandford, professional counselor & author of several books,
  • Jen Mohindra, a TCK coach

Other articles & poems in the issue touch upon our deeper longing for a vocation or ikigai (生きがい), as they say in Japanese, that expresses who we are.

  • Marilyn Gardner, public health expert & author,
  • Ute Limacher-Reibold, PhD, intercultural language consultant,
  • Rachel Hicks, writer, editor and poet,
  • Anna Oken, writer and poet

Hope you enjoy it!

Get a copy of the December issue of Among Worlds

How do we learn to belong?


The opposite of belonging is fitting in
-Brené Brown-

Belonging. It’s a simple word with a lot packed into it. Is belonging something that just is and can’t be changed: we either belong or we don’t? Or can we learn how to belong?

I’d say yes. The older I get, the more I think belonging is a verb and an ongoing process. It’s not an end point that we have to strive to arrive at.

Poster. TCKs of Asia presents an open forum: How do we learn to belong? Third Culture Stories from Asia. 'The opposite of belonging is fitting in' by Brene Brown. Date, time & registration link.

The good news is, I think ‘belonging’ is something that we can initiate.

But it needs regular maintenance.

The bad news is, we spend a lot of our time trying to look for it ‘somewhere out there’ as though we’re looking for gold that’s already in the ground somewhere. We fall into the trap of believing we’ll miraculously stumble across it one day and find it. And then we get frustrated when we don’t find it.

So, how do we learn to belong?

I’ll be sharing more about this topic with some of the folks at TCKs of Asia in December.

Come join us for the conversation!

Online
Saturday, 12 December 2020
9am New York – 3pm Lagos & Amsterdam – 10pm Singapore & Perth

Growing Up in Transit: The Politics of Belonging at an International School - book cover (Asian Third Culture Kids)


Paperback release this December!
Pre-order now and get 25% off!

Third Culture Kids & Parachute Kids: Building Their Resilience

Ever heard of ‘parachute kids’? Roughly defined, they are children who get dropped off in a foreign country—or parachuted in, so to speak—to further their education. The kids are usually middle school or high school aged but sometimes younger. Meanwhile, their parents fly back and stay in their home country.

So what does this have to do with Third Culture Kids?

To find out, join us at the special event hosted by the Families in Global Transition!

I’ll be co-hosting Third Culture Kids & Parachute Kids: Building Their Resilience with the wonderful super-coach, Sundae Bean of the popular Expat Happy Hour podcast.

And we’ll be talking to two experts with fascinating backgrounds themselves:

Dr. Jang Eun Cho is a former parachute kid and one of the few specialists in cross-cultural child and adolescent psychiatry in the United States. She initially had studied to be a surgeon and had already completed half her residency when she made a u-turn and became a psychiatrist.

Jang now runs Cultivate Psychiatry and is the Director of the Consortium at the Harvard Medical School-affiliated MGH Center for Cross Cultural Student Emotional Wellness.

Dr. Timothy Stuart is an adult TCK who is also mixed race. His father is Native American and his mother is Anglo American but he grew up in France and Germany as well as the United States.

Tim did his doctoral research on resilience and trauma at a First Nation reservation school and is now the Head of School at the International Community School of Addis Ababa. He also wrote the book, Children At Promise (you can find it here).


  • Listen to Danau’s interview with Sundae Bean on the Expat Happy Hour here.