Episode 44: Estelle Hughes - "The Culture of Scarcity"
As you might know by now, I get really excited whenever I get Cameroonians on this show. Frankly, the guest doesn’t even have to actually be Cameroonian, like Dr. Neeta Ramkumar who was on last season. They could’ve just lived there and I get excited.
But why the excitement? I know it is because I love bringing different perspectives on this show – especially from those with an African identity. And as big, diverse and vibrant as African perspectives can be, they are often missing from various expat conversations.
Let’s be honest for a moment, Africans are still rarely seen as expats in some spaces, especially compared to Westerners. So any time I have the opportunity to have someone at the table who has this identity, I am pretty game.
Which leads me to Estelle Hughes.
Estelle, as far as I am concerned, is a total badass. She is Cameroonian, that much is true. She is also a former third culture kid, educator, mom, wife, artist, leader and a fierce advocate for African teachers and expanding the possibilities of professional development across the continent.
In this episode, Estelle shares her own experiences of attending international schools in the Congo-Brazzaville and how those experiences would impact her as an international educator. She also offers her candid thoughts on what it means to be an African expat traveling on a less than privileged passport and the real impact it can have on both life and professional choices. And she gives a glimpse of life with a South African husband and their TCKS that they have been raising abroad in Switzerland.
It will be clear soon enough that Estelle is absolutely vibrant and charming. But even beyond that, you will hear the conviction she has for inclusivity and cultural relevance, especially when it comes to the African voice.
In this episode, we discuss:
Living a childhood between Cameroon and Congo.
How traveling on an African passport has limited opportunities.
The value of developing African educators across the content.
Why cultural relevance and inclusivity is needed in international schools.
To hear the full episode, click below or listen wherever you get your podcasts.