Tibet In Exile – Dharamsala, India Summer 2012

Program Name: Tibet in Exile – Dharamsala, India
Term: Summer 2012
Courses: INTL 317: Introduction to Buddhism (4 credits) FL 199: Conversational Tibetan (1 credit) GEOG 399: Contemporary Issues in Tibetan Culture (3 credits)
International Component: August 28 – September 21, 2012
Application Deadline: EXTENDED to Monday, April 23, 2012
Application Location: http://pdx.myedabroad.com/login/

Program Faculty:
Lindsay Skog, Department of Geography
Lindsay Skog, currently a PhD student in geography at the University of Colorado at Boulder, graduated from Portland State University with an MA in Geography in 2010, as well as an MS in Education Administration focused on international education in 2004. While a graduate student at Portland State, Ms. Skog led the inaugural Tibet in Exile program in 2009. Ms. Skog’s research as a master’s student, Fulbright grantee, and now as a doctoral student explores the intersection of environmental conservation, development, indigenous rights, and sacred landscapes in the Himalaya. Ms. Skog has been involved with the Tibetan exile communities in Portland and Dharamsala for over a decade.

Program Description: Students will spend approximately 4 weeks of the summer term in McLeod Ganj, Dharmasala, Himachal Pradesh, India, home of the Tibetan-government-in-exile and often referred to as Little Lhasa.

Undergraduate students will take a four-credit course in Buddhist Philosophy and a one-credit course in Conversational Tibetan (Graduate students may participate on this program, however credit will be arranged on an individual basis). Both courses will be taught by instructors at the Institute for Buddhist Dialectics. Buddhist Philosophy will introduce students to the dominant ethos and world-view of the Tibetan community, both within and outside of Tibet. Conversational Tibetan will assist students in connecting to their host families and the Tibetan community in McLeod Ganj. In addition to courses, the program includes a three-credit undergraduate seminar series with speakers exploring contemporary issues facing the Tibetan exile community, especially focused on cultural continuation and place-making in India. Each student will also prepare a guided individual-research project. Excursions will include two fieldtrips and an overnight trip to the sacred lake Tso Pema with a puja ritual.

Students are strongly encouraged to enroll in the Spring 2012 Tibet and the Himalaya course (GEOG 352) at PSU in preparation for this program. This course surveys the landscapes and diversity of peoples and cultures found on The Roof of the World, as the Himalaya-Hindukush-Karakoram (HKH) and Tibetan Plateau are sometimes called. The class examines the physical and cultural landscapes of this highland region. We investigate not only the place and people within it, but ideas about it and their influence on its history. The class will also provide an opportunity to explore some of the pressing issues of our interaction with the environment and each other played out within highest Asia. This course provides regional context for understanding the Tibetan diaspora community.

Course & Section Information:
INTL 317: Introduction to Buddhism (4 credits)
FL 199: Conversational Tibetan (1 credit)
GEOG 399: Contemporary Issues in Tibetan Culture (3 credits)

Pre-requisites/Qualifications:
GPA 3.00 or above
Open to all Juniors and Seniors

Program Dates:
August 26 – September 21, 2012

Cost:
Estimated Program fee & Tuition expenses: The program fee is $2000 – $2500 (depending on enrollment) and includes: hotels in Delhi, home stays in Dharamsala, all breakfasts and dinners, international medical insurance ($12.50/week rounded up to the whole-week), and a $200 Education Abroad admin fee.
Tuition for 8 credits will be between approximately $460 – $800 per student, depending on enrollment.

Not included: Roundtrip airfare; visa fees, lunches ($5/day), recreational fees for free days, ATM fees, personal expenses (e.g., souvenirs), and immunizations. Students should budget an additional $2300 (about $1500 for airfare and $800 for other costs including personal expenses).

Payment schedule:
Timely payment of all program costs is a requisite condition for participation in the program. Portland State University reserves the right to cancel participation of students not in compliance.
Application Deadline: Monday, April 23, 2012 [extended deadline]
$50 application fee, by check or money order payable to Portland State University, due at the time of application
Acceptance notifications will be sent via e-mail. If accepted, students will be asked to confirm their participation on the program; once participation is confirmed, a deposit of $200 will be will be billed to your PSU student account and the remaining program fee will billed to your PSU student account approximately 1 month to 2 weeks before departure.
Secondary forms and paperwork are due back to Education Abroad within 1 week of acceptance in order to secure your place on the program. You will receive these documents in an Acceptance Packet via email shortly after acceptance.

Refund Policy:
Student withdrawals must be received in writing by the Office of Education Abroad. Verbal notifications are not acceptable. Please send all written notifications of withdrawals to Joseph Miller, Faculty Led Programs Coordinator (joseph.miller@pdx.edu)
Application fees and program deposits are non-refundable.
Once written notification is received by Education Abroad, only uncommitted portions of the program fee can be refunded.
After confirmation of participation, no refunds are guaranteed.

Accessibility & Environment:
Students with accommodations approved through the Disability Resource Center (DRC) are responsible for informing program coordinators after acceptances have been announced. Students who believe they are eligible for accommodations but who have not yet obtained approval through the DRC should contact the DRC immediately.

For Course Content Related Information, please contact
Lindsay Skog, Program Faculty, lindsay.skog@colorado.edu
For Cost, Travel, Scholarship, & Application Information, please contact
Blythe Knott, Education Abroad Advisor, blythe@pdx.edu, (503) 725-4030

Application Components:
Tibet In Exile – Dharamsala, India
Summer 2012
1) Transcripts: (Unofficial transcripts are acceptable.) Upload transcripts in online application where prompted.
All Students: Include transcripts for all courses taken at Portland State.
Undergraduate Transfer Students: Submit transcripts from your prior institutions for your last 90 credits of coursework attempted.
Graduate Students: Include transcripts for all graduate coursework attempted.
2) Statement of Purpose: Please write 2—3 paragraphs on each of the following three topics/questions and enter into the textbox fields where prompted on the online application.
a) Please write a brief autobiographical essay.
b) How will your participation in this program contribute to your educational, career, and/or personal goals?
c) What do you feel is the biggest challenge or factor that may impact your ability to achieve your goals in this program?
3) References: Please give the confidential reference forms provided in the Downloads section of the online application to someone who can objectively evaluate you. The reference should be from an instructor; however references from former instructors, an employer, youth leader, living group adviser, or counselor will also suffice. Do not use peers or family friends as reference. Please note that the reference form is to be returned only by the referee to PSU via email attachment or in a signed, sealed envelope. Directions to where referees should send these forms are found on the downloadable PDF.
Undergraduate Students: One reference is required.
Graduate Students: One reference is required.
4) Interviews:
Undergraduate Students: required to complete an in-person study abroad interview with the program Education Abroad Advisor and/or with the Faculty Group Leader. Interviews will be scheduled after completed applications are received.
Graduate Students: Interviews may be required at the discretion of the faculty director.
5) Application Fee: All students pay $50. Please check appropriate box on the online application to indicate if we are billing your student account or if you are paying by check or money order. If you are paying by check or money order, deliver to ATTN: Sean Wilson, PSU Office of International Affairs/Education Abroad, East Hall, 632 SW Hall Street on the PSU campus. If you are sending by mail, please mail to: PSU Office of International Affairs/Education Abroad, P.O. Box 751, Portland, OR 97207, ATTN: Sean Wilson.
Application Process: Once your application file is complete, you will be notified when and with whom to arrange an appointment for a personal interview. A decision on your application will not be issued until all of the above components are received and your interview is completed. Please note that instructor approval is required and the final decision for acceptance will be made by the instructor AFTER you have completed your personal interview with an application committee in the Office of International Affairs.
Questions? Please feel free to call the PSU Office of International Affairs/Education Abroad Office, 503-725-4094.

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