Global Issues Design Challenge - Cambodia

Global Issues Design Challenge - Cambodia

Global Issues Design Challenge offers a unique visit with a local Rustic team to understand critical global issues. We are happy to discuss customizing a program to the length, location, or topic of your choice. Contact us at to learn more.

Build your students’ skills to change the world on a week-long (remote) adventure to Cambodia. Meet the local team and learn about Cambodia’s work to tackle the issues of gender equality. Then, using IDEO’s Design Thinking framework, your students will collaborate with their team to identify a specific problem and develop and pitch a solution.

Inequality between genders in economic and social realms is a persistent and powerful problem in achieving sustainable development. Gender norms in Cambodian society have centuries-old roots, and women face constraints on their ability to participate as equal partners in social, political, and economic realms. Where women represent 51 percent of the population, only 12 percent of all elected candidates are women. This is an issue where women are significantly under-represented. You’ll learn about the struggles women face in Cambodia in getting equal access to power. You’ll gain insight into the successes and obstacles still ahead. It will provide you an opportunity to reflect on gender issues at home and around the world and to understand the power we all have to create change.

During the Global Issues Design Challenge, your students will:

  • Be empowered to take real action at a time when the world is ready for change.
  • Develop creative thinking skills, grow as a global citizen, and have practiced thinking about systems for change.
  • Discuss issues with like-minded Rustic Pathways staff and experts from around the world.
  • Apply a Design Thinking framework to quickly iterate creative solutions.
  • Earn a 15 hour Community Impact Certificate reflecting the time spent on the program.
  • Build something to brag about on their college transcripts.
Program Profile
Program Profile

Rustic program leaders will guide your class on this learning journey, and local experts will join to share context and insights. Your students will drive the learning journey, diving into burning questions about how these critical issues impact our world, and where their passions and interests connect with creating meaningful change.

Join our Cambodia team and learn about the human, economic, and cultural impacts of gender inequalities. You’ll become more aware of the situation and also become self-aware in ways we can all fight for equality in our various corners of the world. You’ll apply your critical thinking skills to design creative ways to empower people and combat gender inequality.

Weekly Overview

Monday : Empathize – Live interaction with the Cambodia country team. Learn about gender inequality and local culture.

Tuesday : Define – Students will get to know their Rustic Pathways program leader and team. Further discussions help build background knowledge.

Wednesday : Ideate – Students brainstorm ideas with their teams on how they might gender inequality. The sky’s the limit here!!!!

Thursday : Prototype & Test – Working with their groups, students flesh out their solution concept and plan a final presentation.

Friday : Present – Live presentations of plans! The team with the best plan wins Rustic gear!

Local Experts

Yusos Sles

Cambodia Program Manager

Full of energy and always smiling, Yusos is the first one to the project site and the last one to leave. Born in a small Cham village outside of Kampong Chhnang, he now resides in Phnom Penh where he is a recent graduate of Royal University of Law and Economics. Yusos enjoys traveling, seeing new things, and meeting new people, and has traveled to the United States, Australia, and all around Southeast Asia with Rustic. He especially loves meeting new students and showing them around his country.

Senghong Yourk

Cambodia Program Manager

Senghong is a recent graduate of Royal University of Law and Economics where he received a degree in international relations. He brings his impressive knowledge of the many issues affecting life in Cambodia today. Senghong is very passionate about discovering new things and being a role model while making a positive impact in his country. Outside of Rustic Pathways, he is very involved in efforts working to bring change to Cambodia and is a member of the U.S. Ambassador Youth Council, where he meets with the U.S. Ambassador to Cambodia every month to discuss different issues.