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Faculty add study-away trips to Ghana and Martinique

Posted on Sep 17, 2012
Students have new options for J-Term study-away trips: Ghana and Martinique

By Elizabeth Reichert
University Relations student writer

This winter UW-Superior students will have the opportunity to study at more places around the globe than ever before. Two new faculty-led study away courses and one French Club trip will depart during J-Term to visit and learn about Ghana and France.

Dr. Virginia Donovan will lead both a two-week study-away course and a one-week French Club trip to the Caribbean island of Martinique, an overseas department of France. Donovan developed the program after seeing a booth for Martinique at an international conference and watching a film series about Aimé Césaire, a famous poet and statesman from Martinique and a founder of the French négritude movement.

"I watched this film series, andI fell in love with Martinique," she said.

While in Martinique, students will visit and learn about a former sugar cane plantation, a botanical garden, a rum distillery, an interpretative center on slavery, and the beach. Students will also take French courses from native teachers.

"I'm most looking forward to seeing the students have a fantastic multicultural experience on this Caribbean island," she said. "Aside from being immersed in language, it will be gaining perspectives of different people, their historical struggles and cultural victories and for them to see the results of centuries of slavery and then to see how that people is developing its skills and talents into a vibrant society."

Donovan will offer a two-week study away course to Martinique for three credits January 6-19 while a one-week French Club Trip will be offered for no credits January13-19. UW-Superior and specially registered students may attend the study away course while anyone including faculty, staff, and community members can attend the French Club trip. Only UW-Superior students are eligible for SUFAC funding for the French Club trip.

Dr. Ephraim Nikoi, assistant professor of communication and distance learning and a native of Ghana, will offer a three-week study away course Dec. 26-Jan. 16 to Ghana titled "Community Engagement in Ghana."

"I'm most looking forward to the students seeing the vibrancy of another culture and to get students to think about things in different ways," Nikoi said. "It's about getting students to be open and for students to know that Ghana is one of the friendliest countries, to know how hospitable the people are, and to experience cultural diversity."

Students will interact daily with local people, visit historic sites, and participate in national festivities and traditions. Students will engage with the locals in Boxing Day upon arriving in Ghana. Additionally, students will visit Cape Coast Castle's infamous "door of no return," where millions of Africans were sent into a tragic life of slavery.

Students will gain first-hand experience of community development. They also will lidentify areas of interest such as non-profit organizations and women's economic ventures and conduct research. After returning in the spring, they will have the option to take a one-credit class to write about their research.

In addition, students will participate in a service-learning project several days of the week working with homeless youth.

The deadline for enrolling in the programs is October 1.

For more information or to register for the Martinique course and French Club trip, contact Dr. Donovan at vdonovan@uwsuper.edu or (715) 394-8037.

For more information orto register for the "Community Engagement in Ghana" program, contact Dr. Nikoi at enokoi@uwsuper.edu or (715) 394-8389.

News Contact: Al Miller | 715-394-8260 | amiller{atuws}
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