This course is offered as an immersion experience designed to provide students with a unique opportunity to study Swahili language, community service, and the diverse cultures of East Africa. The course blends regular classroom activities with daily immersion experiences among the cultures of the Swahili speaking communities. Students will learn through coursework and community engagement to expand their Swahili language skills, gain better understanding of the social, cultural, political, and economic context in East Africa. The students will then have the opportunity to explore the intersection of language and culture with contemporary issues in leadership and community service. Students will attend pre-departure workshops and complete pre-departure assignments and activities. Students will conduct research about the geography, climate, and history of Tanzania in the larger African context and submit a 2-3-page paper before during the last pre-departure workshop. Students are expected to have knowledge of at least beginners’ Swahili by the time of departure.
You will need to start documenting your identity and self-evaluation before departure and begin to do self-observation as you get into a new culture with all the challenges that may be involved. The process will include your engagement and participation in group activities as well as your engagement with the host community. You will work in learning communities with your peers as well as with the host community.