“When fostering relationships among people from different communities around the world, we can understand, appreciate, and celebrate our differences, while building partnerships that lessen the chance of new conflicts.” – President Dwight D. Eisenhower

The Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine (VTCSOM) has teamed up with Roanoke Valley Sister Cities (RVSC) to offer “Our World Village: The Global Impact of a Personal Connection.” The fall art show will explore the profound influence of personal connections in bridging cultures, transcending borders, and fostering unity across the globe.

“VTCSOM has had a strong relationship with RVSC,” said David Trinkle, associate dean for community engagement at the school. “Both of our deans have served on the organization’s board of directors, and we have an international elective that offers our fourth-year medical students a global health rotation in one of Roanoke’s sister cities. This art show is another outstanding partnership that we hope will resonate in our community.”

About the show

  • A free opening reception will be held at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 14 at the school at 2 Riverside Circle in Roanoke.
  • The show features 13 local artists as well as students from Patrick Henry High School, Arnold R. Burton Technology Center, and North Cross School.
  • Additional works are on loan from board members and friends of the RVSC.
  • Some of the pieces are from personal collections, and some from the RVSC as an organization.
  • The show runs through Dec. 15.
  • Individuals who would like to visit the show but are unable to attend the Sept. 14 reception may contact Courtney Powell.

“We are so pleased the medical school reached out to us with the idea of featuring art from the countries of our six active sister cities,” said Mary Jo Fassié, RVSC president. “This endeavor expands our relationship from medical and educational exchanges to cultural and artistic exchanges. The show will also introduce many people in the valley to our sister cities and our mission.”

About Roanoke Valley Sister Cities

  • The organization provides connections to four continents and six  countries: St-Lô, France; Wonju, South Korea; Lijiang, China; Opole, Poland; Kisumu, Kenya; and Florianόpolis, Brazil.
  • The group fosters the concept of citizen diplomacy, that the individual has the right and responsibility to help shape U.S. foreign relations, one handshake at a time.
  • Earlier this year,  RVSC was recognized with an award for Innovation in Arts and Culture by Sister Cities International for its participation in Roanoke’s Year of the Artist in 2022.

A significant part of the organization’s arts activities in 2022 was the naming of Roanoke artist Katherine Devine as its artist in residence.

“One of the most meaningful parts of my time as artist in residence was sharing with the community the history and activities of RVSC other than simply recognizing Wonju Street,” she said. “Art connects us all, is timeless, and crosses all borders.  Learning  about the art history of a different country  helps to really appreciate another culture’s point of view.”  


The main VTCSOM building at 2 Riverside Circle is wheelchair accessible from the elevators inside the parking garage. Blind or visually impaired users may need assistance finding the elevators under the building, or using the stairs in front of the building. Contact Courtney Powell.





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