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What are the most significant benefits of interacting with people of different cultures? In our home, social, and work environments, we are likely to encounter people from many different cultures. In college, which allows people from all over the world to become involved, we are even more likely to interact with people from a wide variety of differences

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I think I know a bit about this since my whole life has been dealing with people of different cultures.  My mom and dad are from different cultures.  I grew up as an American, but living on an island in Micronesia where there were, of course, people of different cultures.  Since then, I've lived in Hawaii, gone to college in Chicago, and taught in heavily Hispanic school districts...  Anyway, here's what I think I've learned from that.

The benefit of interacting with people from different cultures is that you lose the idea that your way and/or the way of your culture is automatically the best.  You become a bit more humble.  You realize that there are a lot of different ways that people can react to certain situations and that there is not necessarily any way that is "right."

By learning this, you become more open and flexible.  You can pick up ideas from the other cultures and apply them to your own life when (if) you think that they might work better than "your" way.  You also become more compassionate towards other people and more understanding of them if they are different from you or if they are a "fish out of water" dealing with a different culture.

In short, dealing with people from other cultures makes you more open to new ideas and makes you more understanding and compassionate (in my opinion).

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