Why study social change in Samoa?
Please note that SIT will make every effort to maintain its programs as described. To respond to emergent situations, like COVID-19, however, SIT may have to change or cancel programs.
The launching point for the settlement of Polynesia, in 1962 Samoa became the first Pacific island to achieve independence. After a weeklong orientation in Hawai‘i—where you will meet members of Hawaii’s indigenous community and visit the Bishop Museum—travel to Samoa where you will live in Apia, the cosmopolitan capital and the program’s base, and study social justice issues and efforts to protect the environment across the Pacific. Hear perspectives on social transitions, conservation, and resilience from Hawaiians, Samoans, and other Pacific Islanders and interact with Samoan university students. Visit Samoa’s largest island, the volcanic island of Savai‘I, to see the sea arches, blow holes and lava flows of the South Pacific. Journey to Fiji and witness how Oceania’s diverse communities are supported by the environment but impacted by development, tourism, and climate change. Experience a traditional taro lo‘I in Hawai’i and, if you choose, the slaughter, roasting, and serving of a small pig in Amaile, Samoa. In the final month of the program, undertake a self-designed research project on a topic of your choice with experts to guide you.
- Hear perspectives on the human dimensions of climate change in the Pacific.
- Swim the turquoise waters and explore the beaches and wildlife of Oceania.
- Experience the Oceanic lifestyle in rural homes, as well as urban landscapes.
- Study globalization issues in the cradle of Polynesian history and culture.