Spring Term Features Global Destinations
South America will be a popular destination for Alma College students during the May 2011 Spring Term, with Europe and the United Kingdom close behind.
A total of four Alma classes will travel to Ecuador and Peru to study the culture and language, research bird diversity and participate in service learning. Other Spring Term course topics include contemporary art in New York City, psychology in Germany and medieval and renaissance English drama in England.
Spring Term is an opportunity for students to study one academic topic for an entire month. With the option of on-campus or travel courses, they must take two Spring Terms during their time at Alma.
Alma College students at Machu Picchu in Peru.
“I love the focused amount of time dedicated to a single class during Spring Term – and the flexible schedule,” says Communication Professor Joanne Gilbert, who is coordinating her first Spring Term trip to Ecuador and eighth overall. “I’ve been able to accomplish things in Spring Term that I never could during a regular term when I’m teaching three courses, and students are taking several other courses.”
Gilbert says she is extremely excited about facilitating a complete intercultural immersion in Ecuador for her communication students. They will live with host families who speak little to no English, study Spanish four hours a day, tour cultural and natural sites and serve at a latch key program for at-risk kids.
“I’m confident that this will be a transformative experience for them,” she says. “Spring Term is fabulous. I often wish that all classes could be taught in four-week segments, one at a time.”
Following is a roundup of this year’s Spring Term, which begins May 1 and continues through May 26.
Roundup of International Trips
• Students in Michael Bishop’s biology class will spend three weeks in Ecuador studying the language and culture and researching the country’s bird diversity. This class layers with Myles McNally’s new media studies class in which students will create documentaries about the class and its research efforts.
• Dana Aspinall will take students to England, where they will read several English mystery and morality plays and watch them performed live in venues such as the Globe and the National Theatre.
Spring Term in England
• Students in Liping Bu’s history class will travel to China to learn about the country’s history and culture, as well as its dynamic economic developments and social changes. In addition, students will travel to Japan for a comparative perspective.
• Britt Cartrite’s political science class will study the phenomenon of Scottish nationalism while traveling extensively throughout Scotland and reading Scottish literature.
• Marc Setterlund will teach a course on the psychological processes that lead to the Nazis' rise in power in Germany.
• Ed Lorenz’s public affairs class will travel to historic sites, international institutions and nongovernmental organizations in the United States and Europe while exploring individual leadership and international human rights.
• Students in Joe Jezewski’s theatre and dance class will attend theatre performances at the Stratford Shakespeare and Shaw festivals, complete with backstage tours.
• Mark Seals will take students to Peru, where they will live with host families and attend Spanish language classes. The class also will visit sites such as Machu Picchu and participate in service learning.
Roundup of Domestic Trips
Several Spring Term classes will travel but stay within the confines of the U.S. borders. Art students will travel to New York City, where they will explore galleries, museums and artists’ studios. English Professor Carol Bender will take students to Florida to study the works of several Key West writers.
Students in Laura von Wallenmenich’s English class will study the literature, history and culture of the Lakota people in South Dakota. Exercise and health science students will complete a 750-mile bicycle tour of Wisconsin, Michigan and Illinois while studying sports nutrition.
John Rowe, assistant professor of biology, will teach a course on the ichthyology and ecology of coral reef in Hawaii.
Classes on campus also cover a variety of topics, including “The Making of the Atomic Bomb,” which reviews the scientific, engineering, military and social factors involved in the development of the atomic bomb; “U.S. National Security Policy,” which analyzes the emergence and evolution of post-WWII national security state; and “Social Media and Digital Imaging,” which explores the impact of social media as a marketing and publishing tool for artists.
Posted: Mon, April 18th, 2011 at 8:08AM