SIT Morocco: Migration and Transnational Identity

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About

This program examines the factors driving internal and international migration in Morocco and elsewhere in North and sub-Saharan Africa. Students consider how human mobility is shaped by religion, security, youth culture, desertification, poverty, and other pressing issues and how mobility engenders transnational art and multilayered identities.

The program is based in Rabat, Morocco's academic, political, and cultural center. In Rabat, students receive thematic lectures and intensive language instruction in Modern Standard Arabic that includes 15 hours of Moroccan dialect.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

7.67 Rating
based on 3 reviews
  • Academics 7.7
  • Support 6.7
  • Fun 8
  • Housing 8
  • Safety 8.7
Showing 1 - 3 of 3
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Christina
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

An Eye-Opening and Reflective experience

This experience was truly eye-opening and I am so grateful for it. The focus of the overall program was migration, however, it brought so much more to light politically, socially, and economically, allowing students to approach it from various lenses. The program is based in Rabat, allowing us to study within the walls of the Medina (the old city) and also experience life outside of the Medina. Our classes were lectured based, something I was not used to, coming from a smaller college with discussion based classes, however I appreciated having the opportunity to listen and learn from the perspectives of academics and organizations in Morocco. The lectures and themes of the week also led to excursions to different cities in Morocco such as Fez, Tangier, and Chefchaouen, but I will still admit Rabat was by far my favorite city. We also had a one week excursion to Amsterdam when learning about the Moroccan diaspora beyond Morocco. We covered so much in the first two months in classes, so when the Independent Study Project/Internship period arose, we were able to independently work on our chosen projects/sites. I also was not expecting to be able to speak so much Darija! My arabic class would definitely be one of the most engaging and fun classes I've ever taken in my whole college experience. I came in with no knowledge of Arabic, was extremely nervous to take the class, and left wanting to pursue it more! Finally, my host family experience is something I will forever cherish; even months after my return, I have stayed in communication with my host mother and sister almost every week and frequent video calls. This program is for the student that loves to take initiative, ask questions, and critically reflect.

What would you improve about this program?
One thing I would improve is for classes to be half lectures, half discussion. I think the lecturers that come in are really valuable, but I think having the opportunity to discuss afterwards either with them or after they leave would be beneficial for students to think even more critically about its relation to its larger application to that week's theme or the course description.
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Maeve
6/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Learning Arabic Abroad

My absolute favorite part of the program was learning Arabic. Our Arabic teachers were wonderful and taught us so much, not only about the language and culture of our environment, but about life as well. I went in as a beginner, not even knowing the alphabet, but by the time the semester ended I was able to speak with other Moroccans and navigate a Moroccan city entirely on my own with my language skills. There are a million opportunities to practice it with the people around you as many who you interact with will not speak English. This immersion is a unique experience.

While we had three hours of Arabic class every day, it did not feel like too much because we were constantly changing activities and being asked to go out into the city and practice what we were learning. For example, when we were learning the alphabet, we took pictures of signs and tried to read them together in class. When we were delving deeper into vocabulary, we went to the national library to write about what we observed.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
You must be extremely independent and self sufficient to do this program successfully. It requires interviewing other people who you find in the community and is not for the faint of heart. However, students who are highly motivated and have skills in research and languages can do very interesting research and learn a lot.
Default avatar
Basel
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Turkish-style Toilets

The place I was staying in was extremely small, and privacy was almost non-existent. There was one bathroom in the house, with a Turkish-style toilet. Basically, it was a small hole in the ground. These differences from my comfortable home in America were very surprising and overwhelming for me at first.
After a couple of weeks I was getting used to the unfamiliar lifestyle I was in thanks to the help of my host-family. My brother and I shared lots of laughter while he taught me the best techniques to use the new toilet. He would prepare me a meal or snack every night, and he even taught me how to cook some traditional Moroccan dishes. We would listen to rap music everyday, our favorite genre of music, and alternate between Moroccan and American rappers. Our love for music brought us together and I could always count on him to cheer me up.