human mind and migration

an initiative created and led by impactmania for UCSB and Messaggero Veneto Scuola (2020-2021)

What a year!

The students of a number of high schools and universities in Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy — all part of Messaggero Veneto Scuola — participated in the unique impactmania internship program.

Together, with peers at UCSB and impactmania’s Paksy Plackis-Cheng, the students interviewed 75+ experts and researchers, collected 30+ public migration stories, and gathered 60+ responses on naming.

Below are the interviews by the Messaggero Veneto Scuola students.

COVID made us all digital nomads

However, it didn’t stop us from cross-cultural, interdisciplinary learning and forming friendships for life.

A series of migration topics were explored in this Program — from songs inspired by migration, mirror neurons, losing of one’s name and identity, to social media being a new tool of integration. The project culminated in an online exhibition and a public presentation, May 18, 2021

Thanks to Paksy and all the people who made this project happen. During these problematic times for our young people, the impactmania internship turned out to be a unique opportunity of personal, cultural, and professional growth, in addition to being offered the ability to be in touch with new people during a pandemic.

On a personal note: I feel lucky to have met Paksy and to have fulfilled our promise: to start this program together! We did it! Thanks to everyone who worked to give birth to our precious collaboration and — above all — thanks to my students who proved to be “great” beyond all expectation.

– Gabriella Scrufari
Coordinator editorial staff of Messaggero Veneto Scuola, Italy

messaggero veneto

“In redazione con noi” is unique in the Italian media landscape. The initiative was born 20 years ago from an idea shared by the newspaper and the Friuli Foundation. It involves the creation of a newspaper entirely written by students of all levels in the provinces of Udine and Pordenone. The students from various high schools and universities make up the two editorial offices of the Messaggero Veneto Scuola. The purpose of the project is the growth of young people in acquiring information and above all, knowledge of the reality in which they live in, and of the opportunities that the surrounding world offers them. The analysis of the problems related to our times also allows them to develop an independent and critical thinking approach. This experience allows them to better orient themselves in their study and work choices. Therefore, the collaboration with impactmania has been transformative for the students. 


impactmania features people and projects that drive cultural, social, and economic impact. This is to inspire, involve, and connect the current and next-generation’s impact makers. It has realized this through a number of global collaborations across sectors and industries. 

impactmania’s work have been featured in international media, a number of universities presses, the UN, and the U.S. Consulates. One of impactmania’s programs was awarded the U.S. Embassy Public Diplomacy grant.