Next offering is projected to be Winter Break 2015
The field school is designed to introduce students to the social and cultural challenges of development among impoverished non-Western populations while implementing micro-projects. Students will learn in depth about a historically oppressed and marginal population, the Ch’orti’ Maya, and will take part in team projects to enhance Ch’ortis’ quality of life. Previous student projects have included testing water quality, conducting a needs survey, designing a website for a Ch’orti’ ethnic organization, and doing market research. Students from a wide variety of disciplines, such as Anthropology, Latin American Studies, and Engineering are especially encouraged but those from any discipline can both contribute and benefit.
Open to undergraduate or graduate students from accredited U.S. colleges or universities. Minimum 2.5 GPA.
Brent Metz, Associate Professor of Anthropology
Guatemala is a land of contrasts. It has some of the friendliest people imaginable, but for 36 years fought a brutal civil war with strong ethnic antagonism between people of Spanish heritage and indigenous Mayas. It has high mountain chains and volcanoes with cold climates, but also steamy Pacific and Caribbean coasts and jungles. The most modern amenities can be found, but so can also millions of people living off the land. Such contrasts are present in Ch’orti’ Maya region of eastern Guatemala and western Honduras, which archeologists regard as a cradle of ancient Mayan civilization.
The course will meet for five required orientation sessions on the Lawrence campus before the study abroad program. The orientation sessions will focus on the history and current state of the Ch’orti’ Maya in Guatemala as well as team planning for projects. While in Jocotán, students will focus on carrying out their group projects. There will be one weekend excursion to the Copán Ruins, Honduras which is a Mayan archeological site.
Students will stay at hotels in double or triple-room occupancy.
All students on this program must enroll in one of the following 3 credit courses during the Spring 2013 term: ANTH 501 or ANTH 775: Topics in Sociocultural Anthropology: Developing the Ch’orti’ Maya of Jocotan, Guatemala, or LAA 500: Directed Study in Latin American Area Studies. Credit is granted by the University of Kansas upon successful completion of the course and overseas program and will be posted to the student’s Spring 2013 academic record at KU.
Fall 2012: Program participants will meet for five 1½ hr required orientation sessions on the Lawrence campus before the study abroad program, culminating in a digital take-home exam on December 20.
January 6-20, 2013: Study Abroad program in Guatemala
KU students who qualify for financial aid in the form of Stafford and/or other loans, Pell or SEOG Grants, and scholarships may apply the aid to the cost of a Study Abroad Program.
KU Study Abroad supplemental scholarships are available to KU degree seeking students. Applications are available online. The scholarship application deadline is October 1 for Spring programs and March 1 for Fall & Academic Year programs.
All applicants will be required to complete several documents for each study abroad application. Below is a list of the documents that will need to be completed for the application.
a. Statement of Purpose
b. Un-official Transcript or Advising Report
c. 1 Recommendation
d. Authorization to Release Student Information
e. Any additional forms required by the specific program
For more detailed information about the application process, please visit our Application Process page.