Faculty-Led Programs

Summer 2018 and Winter Interim 2019

The following Truman faculty-led programs are offered during the summer of 2019 and the winter interim of 2018. Please note that these programs are not necessarily offered every year. If you are interested, please contact the instructors for more updated information about program availability.


Conservation and Management of  African Mammals

Credit Hours: 3
Dates of the Course: May 12, 2019 – May 28, 2019

Instructor: Prof. Stephanie Foré

Course Description: This  course is aimed at individuals passionate about wildlife who wish to become a part of conservation in action.  This course involves prepatory seminars at Truman State University (1 hr/wk during second block of Spring 2019 semester) in which we will explore the conservation and issues in North America and South Africa. The course culminates in 12 days in South Africa which will primarily involve hands-on work with Parawild Safari operating in the Limpopo Province of South Africa. In this work, students will learn and practice professional and humane animal handling and covers practical techniques to maximize successful capture of large mammals for conservation purposes. In addition to work experience in large animal capture, students will enjoy sight-seeing in Kruger National Park, shark-diving in the Indian Ocean (weather permitting) and other cultural activities.

For more information, please contact Dr. Stephanie Foré.


Biodiversity and Conservation Tropical Rainforests

Credit Hours: 4
Dates of Course: May 28, 2019- June 28, 2019
Instructors: Prof. Enrique Pareja and Prof. Stephanie Foré

Course Description: Students in this course will learn and apply principles of scientific inquiry with emphasis on field methods in ecology while developing an understanding of the ecological dynamics of South American tropical rain forest. In addition to this, students will become familiar with current conservation initiatives in the area and the implications on both local and global levels. Students will begin this course on campus with coursework aimed at providing background and tools to develop their research project. Then the class will travel as a group to Peru to spend 10 days in research at Sachavacayoc Center. The class will also spend 4 days touring the cities of Cusco and Lima as well as the Inca citadel at Machu Picchu. Days tours in Lima and Cusco will include historical and archaeological sites like the Temple of the Sun, both Lima and Cusco cathedrals as well as other churches and the art collections (and possibly catacombs) contained within. It is possible that students may get to witness the preparations for the Inti Raymi festival in Cusco.

For more information, please contact Prof. Enrique Pareja and Prof. Stephanie Foré.


Chile Study Abroad: Globalization and Culture Change

Credit Hours: 4
Dates of Course: December 15, 2018- January 6, 2019
Instructors: Prof. Anton Daughters

Course Description: This course will give you an on-site immersion into the culture of southern Chile’s Archipelago of Chiloe. Once considered a rural backwater of Chile, Chiloe has, in the span of three decades, become one of the world’s leading exporters of farmed salmon and a significant  draw for Chilean and foreign tourists. Villages that forty years ago had neither electricity nor running water now boast internet cafes and call centers. Nevertheless, strong elements of Chiloe’s rural and semi-isolated part persist to this day in the form of fishing and farming subsistence livelihoods, reciprocal labor practices, local artisanry, and unique religious festivals. We will explore the juxtaposition of old and new, rural and urban, local and global through the traditional methods of cultural anthropology: participant observation, formal and informal interviews, general immersion in local events and practices. You will experience daily life in the town Achao, island of Quinchao, and visit smaller islands and villages for overnight homestays in rural households. As a point of contrast, you will spend several days in Chile’s capital city Santiago, where modern high-rises stand as paeans to the national government’s violent and divisive shift to neoliberal economics forty years ago. altogether, you will gain a strong understanding of Chiloe and its uniqueness in relation to the rest of Chile while witnessing firsthand the daily rhythms of the archipelago.

For more information, please contact Prof. Anton Daughters.


China Summer Study Abroad

Credit Hours: 6
Dates of Course: May be offered in the Summer 2019
Instructors: Prof. Julie Minn

Course Description: A five week program providing a choice of intensive Chinese language studies, or a Business course (taught in English), or a visual art internship with cultures classes at Shanghai University in Shanghai, China. Students may participate without prior knowledge of Chinese. Language courses will be offered at all levels. The program will be taught by Truman State faculty members and professors of Shanghai University. The students will take field trips, visit museums and historic sites in and near Shanghai. During the first week of the program, students will visit the capital of China: Beijing. This includes a visit of the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace and the Great Wall; also included in the program a visit to the ancient city of Xian, famous for its terra cotta Warriors.

For more information, please contact Prof. Julie Minn.


Communication Disorders Experience in Mexico

Credit Hours: 3
Prerequisite: CMDS 380: Principals of Clinical Management & clinical assistant one semester or CMDS 480; or CMDS Graduate School status
Dates of the Course: May be offered in 2019
Instructor: Prof. Andrea Richards

Course Description: A communication disorders immersion and cultural experience providing oral-motor and hearing screenings, language-based activities, feeding screenings & education, as well as early intervention and pre-literacy caregiver training and education. All students will rotate through 4 sites: a daycare for children with severe disabilities, two orphanages, and a special needs school all located in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Students and faculty will reside in a hostel during the experience. Two cultural excursions will be included within the 9 day trip. Students earn clinical clock hours (a degree & certification requirement) via supervised clinical activities requiring licensed and supervised SLP/faculty.

For more information, please contact Prof. Andrea Richards


Costa Rica Summer Program

Credit Hours: 12
Dates of the Course: May be offered in Summer 2019
Instructor: Dr. Stacy Davis and Dr. Jose Carreno Medina

Course Description:  This is an 8-week program of complete linguistic and cultural immersion, based in Alajuela, Costa Rica, where each student stays with a host family. Students take four courses (12 hours of credit total) at the Universidad Técnica Nacional, in grammar and composition, conversation, Latin American culture and civilization, and Costa Rican literature, taught by both Truman professors and Universidad Técnica Nacional professors. As part of this program, students also have many opportunities to travel and experience different cities, cultural sites, and natural areas throughout this beautiful country, which is world-renowned for its incredible biodiversity and its warm, inviting people. For example, the program includes regular weekend excursions to such places as the National Institute of Biodiversity, volcanoes, a hot-springs resort, colonial-era churches, waterfalls, museums, a working coffee farm, fabulous Pacific coast beaches, the cloud forest, and San José (the capital), and activities like a crocodile tour, zip-lining, canopy tours, horse-back riding, and snorkeling in the Pacific Ocean.

For more information, please contact  Dr. Stacy Davis or Dr. Jose Carreno Medina.


Europe in Transition

Credit Hours: 6
Dates of the Course: May be offered in Summer 2019
Instructors:  Dr. Jason Lin

Course Description: Europe in Transition is an international study program combining field trips related to the economic changes of the European Union, as well as cultural and historical aspects. This is an inter-disciplinary program. Participants will have the opportunity to observe the current European transition through special field trips. Cultural aspects and historical sights of the countries will be observed. The group will learn how to travel in Europe. An appreciation and acceptance of cultural differences is necessary. This year’s program will take students to Brussels, Belgium; to Paris, France; to Sorrento, Rome, Assisi, Florence and Venice, Italy.

For more information, please contact Dr. Jason Lin.


 Yucatan and Mexican Culture 

Credit Hours: 3
Prerequisite: Spanish 330 or equivalent. Native speakers may take this course only with approval of the Department Chair.
Dates of the Course: December 27, 2018 –  January 11, 2019
Instructor: Prof. Matthew Tornatore

Course Description: SPAN 360: Continued development of  oral skills by full immersion in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico with Spanish-only homestays, native-speaker language partners and full commitment Spanish only language contract. Course included 50 hours contact hours (in class and excursion lectures, grammar presentations, vocabulary building, group activities, conversation, discussions, presentations) plus at least 133 hours of out-of-class unstructured real-life contact with the language, people and culture of  Yucatan. Continued development of an understanding of Hispanic cultures by selected readings and conversation topics revolving around Mexican and Yucatecan culture.

For more information, please contact Prof. Matthew Tornatore.


Modern and Traditional Japan

Credit Hours: 7 (Japanese course- 3 hours; Elementary- 4 hours; Intermediate- 3 hours)

Dates of the Course: May be offered in 2019

Instructor: Prof. Masahiro Hara

Course Description: This six-week study abroad course provides students with opportunities to learn Japanese intensively and to cultivate deep understanding of modern and traditional Japanese culture through firsthand experience. Students participate in the 3 and a half week intensive Japanese language program and have a variety of direct experiences with traditional culture in Kyoto. After visiting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and a World Heritage Shinto shrine in Hiroshima, students learn about modern popular culture in Tokyo for two weeks. Students make presentations in both Japanese and English, and write a research paper. Students are offered various opportunities to develop global and diversity awareness keenly.

For more information, please contact : Prof. Masahiro Hara.


Music and Culture in Central Europe: Ireland (EUR 615)

Credit Hours: 1
Dates of the Course: May be offered in 2019

Instructor: Dr. Mark Jennings and Dr. Jacqueline Collett

Course Description: A study abroad course conducted in Ireland focusing on the music and culture of Ireland and Northern Ireland and our varied concert repertoire. This course – the graduate section of EUR 304 – focuses on developing outstanding leadership in choral music (in rehearsals and in performances), and on the on-site portion of the course, which includes visits to historically important sites, museums, and culturally significant places, as well as performances.

For more information, please contact Dr. Mark Jennings , or Dr. Jacqueline Collett.


Plein Air Study Abroad

Credit Hours: 3
Dates of the Course: May be offered in 2019

Instructor: Prof. Lindsey Dunnagan

Course Description: Plein Air Painting is the practice of creating observational works of art on-site. During this course, students will gain the technical proficiency necessary to create on-site watercolor paintings while learning about the unique cultural heritage of the the country/countries visited. The skill of visually capturing the surrounding environment is a tool that benefits many visual careers. Additionally, trips to major art centers and works of architecture will enrich student’s art practice and cultural knowledge.

For more information, please contact Prof. Lindsey Dunnagan.


Revolutionary Cuba

Credit Hours: 1
Dates of the Course: May be offered in 2019

Instructor: Prof. Marc Becker

Course Description: Only 90 miles from the U.S., Cuba has remained a forbidden territory for most US citizens since the Revolution of 1959. Cuba is a former Spanish colony and sugar producing slave society, and one of the last countries of Latin America to achieve independence from Spain in 1898. Between  1898 and 1959, the United States held an out sized influence on the island. In 1959, Cuba was the site of the hemisphere’s first successful socialist revolution. Although people in the United States know little about Cuba today, Cubans are acutely aware of the US and the long intertwined history between the two countries. We will study the history of the Cuba Revolution and then see it firsthand, as the island struggles to adapt to the contemporary world.

For more information, please contact Prof. Marc Becker.


Sacred Healing in Peru

Credit Hours: 4
Dates of the Course: May be offered in Summer 2019

Instructor: Dr. Dereck Daschke

Course Description: Proposed 3 week, 4 credit hour course at La Universidad de San Ignacio de Loyola International Extension Center in Cusco, Peru. Examine traditional healing and shamanic practices of the Andean and Amazonian world as well as the importance of sacred and medicinal plants and other natural resources!  Students will experience firsthand the interaction of the ancient Andean heritage with the contemporary cultural context.  Daily classroom instruction will be enhanced by excursions to the sacred sites of Machu Piccu and the Sacred Valley, the remains of Incan temples and structures, visiting with traditional healers and local shamans, finishing with Inti Raymi, The Incan Festival of the Sun.

For more information, please contact Dr. Dereck Daschke.


Service Learning in Japan

Credit Hours: 3
Dates of Course: May be offered in Summer 2019
Instructors: Prof. Masahiro Hara

Course Description: Students will gain transformative experiences by being deeply  immersed in a society that operates on highly different cultural norms and values than those help by Midwestern Americans. First, working with Japanese people in high school and college will allow students to see that ideas and opinions are communicated and issues are addresses in ways different from those in the U.S. Second, students will be exposed to a different type of teacher-student interaction and different expectations of students’ behavior. These experiences will help students reflect on ideas and values guiding their social behavior in the U.S. and develop awareness of the ways in which their behavior and thinking are socially and culturally conditioned. In this way, students will obtain an enriched sense of cultural and societal diversity.

For more information, please contact Prof. Masahiro Hara.


Summer Study Abroad in Salamanca, Spain

Credit Hours: 12
Dates of the Course: May be offered in Summer 2019
Instructor: Dr. Stacy Bryant and Andrea Nate

Course Description: This is a 12 credit Spanish language and culture program held at Academia Mester in Salamanca, Spain. In addition to daily class work students are immersed in the native culture by living with a host family, by taking part in the many group activities. In addition to the six weeks of instruction in Salamanca, the program includes field trips to Madrid, Toledo, Castile, Extremadura, Andalucía, Cantabria, and Galicia.

For more information, please contact Dr. Stacy Bryant or Andrea Nate.


Study Abroad in Senegal (The Dakar Institute)

Credit Hours: 6
Dates of the Course: May be offered in Summer 2019

Instructor: Dr. Sana Camara

Course Description: This 6 credit-hour program provides instruction in French language, literature and culture offered jointly by a Truman State University French faculty member and the faculty of the Dakar Institute. The program is aimed at French students who will have completed at least Intermediate French II. In addition to taking courses at the Dakar Institute, students will participate in everyday Francophone life by living with a family, engaging in group cultural activities and taking 2 excursions to Goree Island and St. Louis of Senegal. More specifically, the components of the program, along with the language contact hours they entail, are as follows.

  1. language and culture instruction for 6 weeks (20 classroom contact hours + 36 hours of homework assignments)
  2. lodging with a Senegalese family (128 hours)
  3. French Composition and Conversation Class: 2 hour sessions meeting 4 days a week; taught by a TSU faculty (48 hours)
  4. 2 regional excursions (25 hours)
  5. pre-departure orientation with TSU faculty (6 hours)

For more information, please contact Dr. Sana Camara.