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30 March

Another intense day of activity is underway. It is now 5:15 PM as I lie back on my bed to write this entry.

After visitng the downtown area and doing a little shoping I went out to the Shanghai International Studies University. The highlight of the day and of the trip so far was the lucid and frank dialogue I had with Andrei Aleksankov (pictured), deputy director for international relations and marketing, St. Petersburg State Polytechnical University, regarding the development of international educational programs. We expounded upon the desirability of establishing multinational educational programs with a number of countries participating and contributing the expertise and resources whereby more comprehensive programs of education can be offered to students. The countries of China, The United States and Canada were mentioned as being among those of particular intrest to be in cooperation with Russia. This is a venture that I have a desire to support and promote. I also enjoyed speaking with other members of the delegation including Assistant ProfessorAlexander V. Elenskiy, PhD, Vice Rector for International Relations; and the bright minded and well spoken Olga Dolinina (pictured), PhD, Head of International Department, Director of Aptech Computer Training Center, Head of Applied Information Technologies Department, Saratov State Technical University; and one other gentleman whose card I have in Russian but am unable to translate nor recall the verbal details. Sorry.

Following this adventure into the world of academia I met with two fasciating students attending the university, Zheng Guang Liang and Wang Ling Mei. We spent quite a while discussing issues in the realm of mental problems, the existence of God, religious organization and the relationship of the individual with material existance, love in the family and between individuals.

Although these things can only be lightly touched upon in such a short moment of communication, it is apparent to me that such dialogue between individuals so far apart in culture, age and sex can help to improve the relationships that we as human beings desire and that efforts at understanding can prove to contribute towards the spiritual well being and happiness of one another.

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