Here at 85°E, we consider our seminars the key piece that sets us apart from other development or foreign experience programs, We are very aware that most immersive programs fall short in providing the academic and contextual support that promotes real, lasting changes in a students’ understanding of the world and of themselves. These seminars will push you to think critically about the unique, specific challenges that crop up in the Nepali context, as well as the your individual impact on the community.
We believe that you should return home with a deep, personal understanding of the challenges and opportunities that Nepal faces, and we see these seminars as a place to begin that conversation. During the seminars, you will discuss current events, the history of your project site, and the philosophical and political underpinnings of Nepal. Our seminar leader will push you to examine and restructure your own worldviews, and to return home with a new sense of yourself and your place in the 21st century.
85°East will have a house for our students while they are living in Kathmandu. Our program coordinator and director will live in the same house or nearby, and we will arrange for meals and any living accommodations.
We can arrange transportation, translators (if necessary), and any other resources you require for your internship, project, or research.
Authenticity: What’s it good for?
Many internship and study abroad programs pride themselves on giving the student an ‘authentic’ experience, but what does that really mean? You will dissect the meaning and accessibility of 'authenticity' and its relationship to traveling and working abroad.
Cultural Similarities and Differences:
We will discuss the obvious cultural and political differences you see in Nepal, and perhaps more subtle ones as well. What kinds of cultural cues do you miss as an outsider? What are you seeing that could be invisible to residents of the country? And you see any parallels to your home country in Nepal?
On the Outside Looking In:
Foreigners often attract a certain amount of attention, and for many students, this will be your first taste of hyper-visibility. You will be pushed to unpack the discomfort of being easily recognized as different, and to think deeply about how you deal with it.
Reflection and Introspection
To what extent has your experience changed how you think about the impact of development and social innovation projects in Nepal? Of development and social innovation projects in your home country? In the world at large?