Previous International Study Centres

Quotes from past students:

The ISC is something I will never forget and something I would implore every student at York to consider attending.  The Lectures set this apart from any other normal summer trip and formed some of the most enlightening aspects of the ISC. [Thomas, 2019]

IT WAS AMAZING! I had the best 2 week, with such great people in such a great place - I wish I could be back there! [Cape Town 2016]

…Mount Holyoke re-shaped my life! I learned the joy, discomfort and sheer surprise in travelling, learning in a different space, and how culture and life differs even if it’s on "jumper/jersey" levels. I made friendships that I shall cherish and keep for life. [Lineo, 2013]

To anyone thinking about doing something similar, I'd say if the opportunity arises, just go for it, even if you don’t know the language or you haven’t heard much about the country, because it’s a great experience and you’ll see something different." [ James, 2014]

It's been such a great experience and I feel that I have seen so much which I would never have been able to have gained had I visited the U.S. on a typical holiday [student, 2015]

2019

Four ISCs were held in 2019.  In Ghana, Russia, the USA and India.

The Ghana ISC was hosted by the University of Ghana on the topic of Ghana in the Global Imagination.  The dates were 23 June to 7 July 2019 

  • The course was aimed at students interested in Ghanian culture, art, history, politics, education and contemporary society and included visits to Cape Coast slave fort, Kakum Rainforest National Park, Kumasi weaving village and palace and Akosombo lake.

The Russia ISC was hosted by the Higher School of Economics in St Petersburg and Moscow on the topic of Exploring Russia: from the past of St Petersburg to Modern Moscow. The dates were 30 June to 14 July 2019.

  • The course was aimed at students interested in History, Politics, Media and Economics and included visits to the Hermitage, the Church of the Spilled Blood, Red Square and a day trip to Peterhoff.  

The USA ISC was hosted by Michigan State Univeristy on the topic of Leadership, Problem-solving and Entrepreneurship.  The dates were 9 July to 22 July 2019.

  • The course was aimed at students interested in leadership aptitude, habits and practice, community engagement, working within organizations and social entrepreneurship.  It included visits community projects, a baseball game and two nights in Chicago.

The India ISC was hosted by Think Education: Go India in Bangalore, Delhi and Agra on the topic of Modern India vs Historic India.  The dates were 27 July to 10 August 2019.

  • The course was aimed at students interested in buisiness, history, politics and economy, the role of NGOs in modern issues and Indian culture.  Trips included Banaglaore Palace, the Art of Living ashram and The Taj Mahal.

 

2018

Four ISCs were held in 2018.  In Mexico, the USA, South Africa and China.

The Mexico ISC was hosted by Tecnológico de Monterrey in Queretaro on the topic of Mexican Identity and Culture.  The dates were 16 June to 1 July 2018 

  • The course was aimed at students interested in Spanish, history, art, culture and Mexican food and included visits to the Teotihuacan pyramids and visits to four different cities.

The Washington DC ISC was hosted by George Washington University on the topic of Justice, Equality and Policy. The dates were 8 to 21 July 2018.

  • The course was aimed at students interested in Politics, Law, History and Equality and included a tour of the Capital building and Supreme Court and a trip to George Washington's house at Mount Vernon.  

The South African ISC was hosted by the University of Cape Town on the topic of Contemporary South Africa: history, culture and politics.  The dates were 28 July to 12 August 2018.

  • The course was aimed at students interested in history from the slave trad to Apartheid, politics, development through literature, music, television and sport.  It included visits to Robben Island, the Slave Lodge and the Cape of Good Hope.

The China ISC was hosted by Peking University in Beijing on the topic of Culture and Communication.  The dates were 11 to 25 August 2018.

  • The course included Mandarin language classes as well as lectures on Chinese history, music, art and culture, philosophy and media.  Trips included Tiananment Square, the Forbidden City and the Great Wall.

2017

Four ISCs were held in 2017.  Two were in the USA, one in Russia and one in China.

The Russian ISC was hotsted by the Higher School of Economics (HSE) on a topic of Understanding Modern Russia.  The dates were 18 June to 2 July 2017.

  • The course had lectures on Russian history, economy, culture and society, foreign policy, international business and heritage.  It included a week in Moscow, and a week in St Petersburg.

The Washington DC ISC was hosted by George Washington University on the topic of Justice, Equality and Policy. The dates were  Sunday 2 to Saturday 15 July 2017.

  • The course was aimed at students interested in Politics, History, Equality, and Economic development and included a tour of the Capital building and Supreme Court and a trip to George Washington's house at Mount Vernon.  The dates also coincided with the 4th July celebrations.

The Michigan State ISC was hosted by Michigan State University on the topic A Sustainable Future: Leadership and entrepreneurship to help solve the world's problems.  The dates were Sunday 9 to Sunday 23 July 2017.

  • The course included lectures, workshops and labs on different aspects of leadership; atmosphericv science; climate change; modeling; managing stustainable organisations; and environmental management and planning.  It isnlcuded a weekend in Chicago.

The China ISC was hosted by Peking University in Beijing on the topic of Culture and Communication.  The dates were Saturday 12 to Saturday 26 August 2017.

  • The course included Mandarin language classes as well as lectures on Chinese history, music, art and culture, philosophy and media.  Trips included Tiananment Square, the Forbidden City and the Great Wall.

 2016

Three ISCs were held in 2016.  Two were in the USA and one in South Africa.

The Washington DC ISC was hosted by George Washington University on the topic of Justice, Equality and Policy: A Global Perspective. The dates were from Saturday 18 June to Tuesday 5 July 2016.

  • The course was aimed as students interested in Politics, History, Equality, and Economic development and included a tour of the Capital building, talks by members of the World Bank and a trip to Philadelphia.  The dates also coincided with the 4th July celebrations.

 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZyMxE5QXXE

The Cape Town ISC was hosted by the University of Cape Town on the topic of Art and Culture for Social Development.  The dates were from Monday 25 July to Tuesday 9 August.

  • The course was aimed as students interested in History, literature, music, sport, language, politics, and included trips to a slave lodge, Table Mountain, Cape Point, Robben Island and wine tasting in Franschoek.

Table Mountain - Cape Town ISC 2016Group on steps 2 - Cape Town ISC 2016

 

The Mount Holyoke ISC was hosted in a Liberal Arts College of the same name in Masachusetts, USA and was on the topic of Social Entrepreneurship and Innovative Design.  The dates werefrom Friday 17 June to Tuesday 5 July.

  • The course was a more hands-on programme, with workshop sessions including building skills in project design and development, entrepreneurism, communication (to perfect a pitch presentation), developing a business plan, financial literacy (as a pathway to financial well-being and in a professional environment), design thinking and approaches, as well as packaging these skills to succeed in the workplace, whether in private enterprise or in non-profit social service organizations.
  • The program included field trips to case studies to analyse local community economic development and to learn from hands-on work in technology design and ecological restoration. It also included visits to New York and Boston.

Group in New York - Mount Holyoke ISC 20164th July Celebration - Mount Holyoke ISC 2016Meeting at ArtaSana - Mount Holyoke ISC 2016

 

2015

Three ISCs were held in 2015 in the USA, South Africa and Brazil. The theme for the USA course was Leadership and Community Partnership at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts and included visits to New York City and Boston.

In South Africa the theme was Post-Apartheid Cape Town: History, Politics and Culture at University of Cape Town. Students could admire the view from the top of Table Mountain, see the penguins at Boulders Bay, and visit Robben Island.

In Brazil the programme focussed on Biodiversity and Sustainability, and was held at UNICAMP in Campinas. The course included a weekend in Rio.

2014

Two ISCs were held in 2014. The first ISC took place in Cape Town in conjunction with the University of the Western Cape in South Africa, with a theme of "20 years of Democracy", focusing on international relations, human rights and the transition from Apartheid to democracy over the last 20 years. A fascinating programme and highly relevant in this region with all its turbulent history.

The second ISC of 2014 was held at Peking University in Beijing, China. The course focussed on a theme of Chinese history, art, culture and language. PKU is the Ivy League of China and this course was an excellent opportunity for our students to experience this rich culture firsthand.

ISC 2014 students at Cape Point, Cape Town and exploring the Great Wall of China.

2013

Mount Holyoke College in western Massachusetts was chosen to hold the inaugural ISC due to their record of academic excellence and the long standing relationship between our two universities. 

The programme consisted of a three day cultural experience in New York City with the theme of American History. The students visited the Tenement Museum to learn about early American immigrants, the 9/11 Memorial and enjoyed a harbour cruise to view the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.  The students then travelled to Massachusetts to begin their two week intensive academic course in Leadership and Social Change. Students also enjoyed a traditional 4th of July experience by attending a reading of the American Constitution (followed by the British Response!) before enjoying a baseball game and BBQ. The students also enjoyed a weekend visit to Boston.

The ISC 2013 students at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts

The ISC 2013 students with the programme staff at Mount Holyoke College, Massachusetts.