SIT Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples

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About

Examine Tibetan and Himalayan politics and religion and the contemporary issues faced by communities in exile, particularly in the case of Tibet.

Major topics of study include:

Varieties of beliefs and practices amongst different groups of Himalayan people
The politics inherent in processes of everyday life in an exile community
Aspects of contemporary Tibetan civilization
History and politics of the region
Himalayan arts and sciences

Questions & Answers

Reviews

98%
based on 5 reviews
  • Academics 8.2
  • Support 10
  • Fun 9.6
  • Housing 9.6
  • Safety 10
Showing 1 - 5 of 5
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Hadi
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

SIT Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples

To this day I am still learning from the experience I had in 2013 with SIT Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples as it continues to shape my future. They threw us into the culture, taught us how to think critically and developed our skills of non-invasive and collaborative research (also travelling to India and carrying out extended fieldwork in Bhutan). The individual Study Project (ISP) truly lets you flourish your interest, while the faculty does their very best to help you achieve maximal learning, while staying rooted. My current path and career are positively influenced by this program and its expert faculty. Furthermore, this program has it all: Adventures, deep cultural integration, mystery, unbelievable sightseeing and the development of you as a student. I recommend this program whole heartedly and am thankful to the entire program faculty.

Hadi El Rabbat (Egypt)
SIT Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples (Spring 2013)

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Eben
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Gaining a new perspective on life in the foothills of the Himalayas

The SIT Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples program is a unique program that offers a tremendous amount of opportunities for students with a variety of academic and personal interests. In addition to general coursework in Tibetan language, research methods and ethics, and content seminars often in the form of lectures and discussions with local experts, the month-long independent study program was an incredible undergraduate research opportunity. Students on my program pursued such disparate interests as geo-tourism development, Tibetan Buddhist ritual, women's health, climate change, traditional handicrafts, creative writing, photography, local cuisine culture, refugee issues, education, and many more. This program truly is student-centered and allows for all participants to deeply pursue their own interests in a unique setting in the foothills of the Himalayas. Moreover, the excursions give students the opportunity to explore other Himalayan and Tibetan areas throughout Nepal, India, and Bhutan.

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Clara
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Freedom to explore your passions and challenge yourself in an incredible place!

Speaking from experience, you don’t need a significant background in South Asian studies or philosophy to gain a lot from this program. Nepal is rich with cultural diversity and I was constantly in awe of its natural beauty. It has something for everyone, and the staff is SUPER supportive and knowledgable. With the help of SIT staff, students were able to connect with locals, and I gained wonderful Nepali friends that made my time there even more special. My homestay family became like my actual family. Course instruction was really grounded in anthropology and gave me a much more informed framework for understanding cross-cultural interactions and international travel. The excursions that the program provides were a huge highlight because we got to travel to remote places and gained experience in anthropological methodology and interviewing skills. These helped prepare me for the independent study month, during which I designed my own project with the help of SIT staff; it gave me a fascinating opportunity to learn about my career interests in a particular Nepali setting. I gained so much knowledge, confidence, and cultural awareness, and I am constantly talking about my experience in job/internship interviews. This is an incredible program!!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
This program gives you a lot of freedom - use it wisely and ethically. Think critically about how your presence as a traveler affects the community. Really put a lot of care into your independent study project - it is an amazing opportunity to learn so much!
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Jenny
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Most life changing college experience I had. Hands down

I cannot even begin to explain the numerous ways in which this program changed my life… seriously I have a SIT Nepal story for practically every single occasion and find a way to bring up how much it changed my life frequently. If you want a dynamic study abroad program that will set your life up in remarkable ways beyond what you even could expect, this is the program. I wanted to do a program very different than my peers all in London/ Australia, because that really SHOULD be the point of study abroad and wow did I get that. The program excursions change every semester so when you apply there is no real way of knowing what you will get up to that semester. We took two airplanes and a helicopter to the Tibetan border to most remote area in the country in the far west and then went on a 2 week walk/ trek where we stayed in villages in the middle of the Himalayas. How many study abroad programs do you know where you could potentially be on a helicopter?? It also means that unlike other programs where you follow a set tourist trail, you truly are going places in many cases for the first time. People are still excited to engage with you and learn with you. Additionally with the independent research project, I was incredibly daunted going into it, but it ended up being one of the most eye opening and rewarding things I’ve ever done. I never considered myself a “research” person, but it all changed with this. I gained so much self confidence in my ability to get to the bottom of stories and write about them. We all did! The staff is fantastic. The homesteads are fantastic. The SIT house is a little piece of heaven with a garden and fresh food every day. I have traveled a lot in my life but can hands down say this was my most memorable, unique experience ever. If you love adventure, the unknown, an incredibly unique cultural experience, and having experiences that no one else in the world really will get, this is the place.

PS I think the "fun" descriptor is very misleading here. You're living with homestays so you aren't going out to the club every night (although you can do that on the weekend). It is fun in the fact you are with an incredible cohort of kind, curious people that you can sit at cafes by Buddhist stupas talking about life while monks complete their kora beneath you. But again, this is a fully unique experience! It was nice to take a semester off of college shenanigans and engage in these meaningful relations instead. These people became my best friends. I have seen them in Bangkok, Chicago, New York, and am even doing a Fulbright back in Asia with one of the girls I met there.

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Jona
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Unbelievably Memorable Study Abroad in Nepal

The SIT Nepal: Tibetan and Himalayan Peoples study abroad program was a remarkable highlight of my time in university. Through a refreshing taste of experiential learning, we engaged with communities across Nepal in productive, meaningful ways. Learning in the field instead of the classroom inspired us all to be more invested in our work. The staff, who was caring and supportive to the utmost degree, has connections across the region and is willing to help all of their students with both the smallest and greatest of tasks. Their deep knowledge of the country (and neighboring countries) opens up a world of opportunity. Students with any possible interest, even the most esoteric, will find their place and thrive in this study abroad program.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
SIT will provide you with unforgettable experiences. Embrace them and be present for every moment!