In addition to taking the above courses, students will also need to enroll in one of the following two courses:
Independent Study Project
Independent Study Project – syllabus
(ISPR3000 / 4 credits)
The four-week Independent Study Project (ISP), scheduled in the final portion of the program, provides students with a unique opportunity to study in-depth a key aspect of global security or religious pluralism in Senegal. The ISP draws upon knowledge and skills gained from the thematic, language, and Research Methods and Ethics seminars. At this point, students will have worked with the academic director and various other in-country experts to develop their ISP proposals and to schedule interviews and arrange translators (if required) and other logistics essential to completing the ISP. They will also have developed the competence to act in culturally appropriate ways and find resources in Senegal needed for ISP completion. The ISP allows students to practice and hone their primary data gathering skills and various other skills learned in the Research Methods and Ethics seminar, such as navigating unfamiliar cultural norms, building rapport, and navigating local bureaucracies. Further, students practice and hone their skills in gathering and analyzing data from primary sources, managing this data, and making a coherent argument in a scholarly manner.
Sample ISP topic areas:
- How the Sufi branch of Islam relates to the Senegalese government
- Religious co-existence in neighborhoods
- Museums as de/colonial spaces in Senegal
- Empowerment through women’s giving circles
- How outward appearances represent religious practice
- Senegal’s successful approach to radicalization among youth
- Muslim women’s engagement with feminism
- Fluidity of ethnic identities in Senegal
Browse this program’s Independent Study Projects / undergraduate research.
Internship and Seminar
Internship and Seminar – syllabus
(ITRN3000 / 4 credits)
Several regional and multilateral bodies are based in Senegal that engage with issues of global security, religion, as well as opportunities to understand the country from a decolonial perspective. It is in this sense that Senegal provides an excellent setting, within Africa, in which to explore security, peace, and decoloniality and their support mechanisms, from an African perspective. SIT will use its extensive network to place students in national and international organizations working in the broad area of governance, election monitoring and peace in Dakar, education, health, development, and beyond. In addition, students may petition SIT for approval of internship placements that they find on their own initiative. In either case, SIT’s academic director must approve of the student’s internship duties, location and placements.
Ultimately, each student takes responsibility for making optimal use of resources available at the organization and will be expected to be proactive in engaging with local experts to achieve internship objectives. Weekly two-hour reflection and assessment meetings are held with the academic director or internship coordinator to review the progress of the internship and learning associated with the internship experience. Students complete an internship and submit a paper that describes, assesses and analyzes their learning in regard to the theoretical underpinnings, complexity, challenges, and benefits to the community of the work of their internship organization. The internship paper also outlines the tasks that the students completed at the international development internship, reporting relationships, challenges encountered and how the student overcame them.
- Working on issues of social justice in local NGOs
- Supporting women’s rights through local and international organizations
- Working on health reform projects in a local hospital
- Developing strategies for food security in an eco-village network
- Advocating for children’s rights
- Volunteering in an orphanage
- Assisting in a bilingual high school