EDMOND — Edmond Public Schools Superintendent David Goin wants to make a connection more than 5,500 miles away.
Goin was part of an eight-member delegation that traveled to Edmond's sister city of Engels, Russia.
The delegation that visited Engels, a city with a population of 300,000 about 500 miles southeast of Moscow, included representatives from the city of Edmond, Chamber of Commerce, the University of Central Oklahoma, Oklahoma Christian University and Francis Tuttle CareerTech.
“We spent a lot of time discussing with their city leaders the potential avenues for educational and cultural dialogue and exchanged ideas about possibilities for future connections,” Goin said.
Members of the delegation saw presentations from more than 20 high school students including a troupe of musicians who performed traditional Russian music and dance.
“It's very clear that although the people of Engels have had limited contact with Americans and English-speaking people that they have a sincere desire for friendship and understanding,” Goin said. “Hopefully we can structure a visit of these young people to come to Oklahoma to share their talent and culture.”
Despite the high cost of travel, Goin said he is confident students in Edmond and Engels can become partners in exchanging ideas and culture.
“With options like Skype and Face Time and Internet-based activities, interactions can go beyond simply being ‘pen pals,'” Goin said.