2012 May Term Study Experiences
Sustainability and Slow Food
Travel to Italy and Spain
Estimated Trip Cost: $3,336
Travel Dates: May 8 - 24
Instructors: Kristjane Nordmeyer, Inaki Pradanos
This course will explore and address the increasing interest in food justice and sustainability by means of travel to “slow cities” located in Italy and Spain. This course will not only focus on the shape of the global scenario but it will also engage students in an active search for alternatives to the negative aspects of an asymmetrical global interdependence. The course will explore alternative solutions to contemporary concerns through the exploration of social movements rooted in the Mediterranean cultures, such as those promoted by the Slow Food Movement (local, sustainable, healthy alternatives, and conviviality as a way of life) and Degrowth theory. We will be targeting problems such as sustainability, food justice, fair trade, cultural identity, and so on. The main goal of this course is to use the experience abroad to train and engage students to lead learning service projects involving food education in their communities to promote healthy habits and reduce ecological impact.
Everest Base Camp Trek
Travel to Nepal
Estimated Trip Cost: $4,245 - $4,504, depending on enrollment
Travel Dates: May 8 - 31
Instructors: Kerry Case, Liz Rogers
On this May Term Trip, students will trek through the Khumbu region of Nepal to the Mt. Everest Base Camp at 17,650 feet above sea level. This region and mountain “loom large” in the American imagination and inspire ecological and cultural exploration. In addition to investigating the natural and cultural history of the highest mountain on earth, students will also develop outdoor leadership skills on this trek. As part of this course, students will:
- carefully examine the cultural influences that have shaped their ideas about the most famous mountain in the world
- compare their pre-trip attitudes to those of the people they encounter along the trek, and to their own understanding after the experience
- develop an understanding of the natural history and culture of the area
- develop outdoor leadership, teamwork, and mountaineering skills
- perform service in the form of trail clean up
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS: This trip involves extended physical activity at very high altitudes. While no previous technical or mountain climbing experience is required, in order to be successful and enjoy this trek, students should be in good physical condition, able to hike up to 6 hours per day, and comfortable being outside in cold, wet weather.
On the Nazi Trail
Travel to Germany, Austria, Italy
Estimated Trip Cost: $3,190 - $3,520, depending on enrollment
Travel Dates: May 1 - 17
Instructors: Giancarlo Panagia, Jeff Nichols
The class will include a trip from Munich, Germany through Austria into northern Italy, following the trail that was evidently followed by certain high Nazi officials escaping from allied justice at the close of World War II. This escape route has been the subject of study by Nazi hunters like Simon Wiesenthal; novelists like Frederick Forsyth (The Odessa File); and journalists, most recently the Argentine Uki Goñi, author of The Real Odessa. Declassified government documents (US, German, Austrian, and Argentine) have provided evidence of these events. (Those officials, including Adolf Eichmann, Josef Mengele, and Martin Bormann, eventually made their way to Latin America, while their former colleagues were prosecuted, jailed, executed, or committed suicide.) This class will include readings, discussions, and site visits focused on issues of Italy’s role in both world wars; the nature of war crimes; the historical context of organizational/institutional complacency and complicity in these escapes; and the transition from global hot war against Fascism to cold war between the “communist bloc” and the “free world.” The trip will conclude in Genoa. Students will conduct a mock trial of Nazi officials in which students will play all the roles, from defendants to prosecutors to jurors.
Week on Wall Street
Travel to New York City
Estimated Trip Cost: $2,500
Travel Dates: May 13 - 19
Instructors: Rob Patterson, Richard Collins
This course provides a unique opportunity for students to learn about financial markets, investing, and the business world through first-hand observation. Students will gain an invaluable perspective on these issues as they immerse themselves in the fast-paced, financial capital of the world--New York City. Students will live the “New York experience” through a variety of cultural events, tours of historic/famous sites, and participating in “uniquely New York” types of experiences.
Origins of the Western World
Travel to Italy
Estimated Trip Cost: $4,700
Travel Dates: May 6 - 22
Instructors: Dick Chapman, Michael Popich, John Watkins
This course traces the religious and economic origins of the Western world from Roman times to the present. The two great forces forming the Western world are the economic and the religious. The role of religion is more obvious and direct; the economic changes are generally in the background. The course examines the origins of the Christianity, the Roman Catholic Church, and its influence on the development of Europe. Further, the course examines the impact of the Protestant Reformation on the rise of capitalism. From an economic point of view, the course examines the economy of ancient Rome, medieval Europe, and the impact of the discovery of the New World on the rise of capitalism. The course will also address the decline of religion in Europe, relative to the U.S., in addition to some of the modern economic challenges posed by the European monetary union in light of the economic distress of PIIGS (Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, Spain). We further raise the question whether mammon has replaced God, with the pursuit of wealth as the new religion.
Hopi and Navajo Cultures
Travel to Northern Arizona and Southern Utah
Estimated Trip Cost: $795 plus $200 for meals
Travel Dates: May 12 - 20
Instructors: Cordelia Schaffer, Barbara Marsh, Marsha Morton
This course introduces students to Hopi and Navajo peoples. It includes social, educational, environmental, political, economic, artistic, health and caring aspects of their cultures. Special emphasis will be placed on the practical aspects of health care and observation in the schools. There will be a nine-day field trip designed for students to explore health issues, educational practices, and ecosystems on Hopi and Navajo reservations in northern Arizona and southern Utah. Students will visit Indian Health Services and private health care facilities, schools on reservations, Hopi and possibly Navajo families, museums, and possibly National Park sites. Students will participate in guided field and river trips. Students will also spend one day visiting related sites in Salt Lake City after the nine-day field experience. Students from all majors are welcome with the permission of the instructors. Insufficient enrollment or national or international situations may cause cancellation of this study tour.
Service Learning in Thailand
Travel to Thailand
Estimated Trip Cost: $4,250
Travel Dates: April 29 - May 22
Instructors: Han Kim, Peter Ingle
The focus of this course will be to explore concepts in global citizenship and responsibility in the 21st century by understanding the educational, health and developmental needs of rural Thai citizens as well as indigenous populations through cultural immersion and active participation in service projects designed to provide benefits to the local peoples. Students will participate in service projects in two distinct rural Thai villages, one near the Burmese border in Mae Sot, and one in the rural Northeast near Khon Kaen, that will help alleviate some of the health, educational and developmental issues present, while staying with local families within the villages. Other activities will include tours of historically significant sites in Thailand, sightseeing in Bangkok as well as spending a day with Burmese refugee children at a refugee school and visiting an HIV/AIDS hospice. Students will meet during Spring Semester for preparatory sessions that will ready them for the experience. Course assignments will include reflective journaling, active discussions during the trip, and an online reflective multimedia project at the end of the trip.