“Upstanders” is a series of short stories, videos and podcasts created by Starbucks. The stories are about “ordinary people doing extraordinary things to create positive change in their communities.” Here’s an introduction:

The podcast episodes are about 15 minutes. The videos accompanying the stories on the website are about 5 minutes.

The first story I listened to a story called “The Mosque Across the Street” about the Syrian immigrant who built an Islamic community center in predominantly Christian Memphis, Tennessee. The story is about tolerance. At the beginning of this episode, there’s a brief interview with Howard Shultz, the CEO of Starbucks, about why the series is called “Updstanders”.

And I listened to “Scholarship for Every Student” about a town in Michigan that managed to organize funding for alll high school graduates in their town to go on to college. And they did during the 2008 financial crisis.

You can find the podcast on your favorite podcast app (I like Overcast), and you can find all the stories on the Upstanders site.

These stories are great for listening practice, and some may inspire you about a research project topic.


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