Patti McGill Peterson Center for International and Intercultural Studies
Kenya Coming Home
“I can safely say the KSP fundamentally changed the way I thought and helped me to figure out what I wanted to do in life, which is something every college student struggles with even after graduating.”
After a semester in Kenya, students often come back to campus excited, overwhelmed and sometimes a bit unsure how to build on their amazing experiences in East Africa. Many would love a chance to learn more about Africa with the hope of maybe returning to Kenya in the future. Well St. Lawrence offers a number of opportunities to build on your experiences through course-work, research, and other professional opportunities.
Courses and Research:
One of the best ways to discuss, process and build upon the Kenya SemesterProgram is through additional classes and/or research which allow students to examine an aspect ofKenyan society in greater depth. St. Lawrence has a strong tradition of offering interdisciplinary courses and research opportunities in African studies. Plus with roughly 100 students a year visiting studying abroad in Africa via the KSP, The France Program's Senegal Field component or through summer courses in Ethiopia students are very likely to encounter others on campus who are just as passionate about their abroad experience.
African Studies Minor/ Major: Students returning from the KSP will need just one more African studies course to complete the African Studies Minor or one of the Combined Major options with Anthropology, Government, Economics or History. To complete the degree requirements for African studies, students will need to take a 400 level research seminar. Currently the African studies program offers one of these dual-listed research seminars each semester and there is also an opportunity to complete the requirements for a minor/combined major in African studies by applying to do an independent study. Faculty and alum of the KSP note how these courses/research opportunities have allowed a number of students to conduct further research associated with a direct experience they had in Kenya.
Travel Enrichment Grants are intended for students participating in SLU off-campus programs who are connecting an academic or personal/extra-curricular interest with study abroad or with intercultural experience within the U.S.
Travel Research Grants are intended for travel in connection with independent study and research on international or intercultural topics. Proposals normally support independent study that is grounded in prior academic course work; normally the fruits of this independent study will contribute to subsequent academic work on camp
SLU Fellowships: The St. Lawrence University Fellows program provides new opportunities for student intellectual growth by funding, with a $3,500 stipend, student research by 25-30 students per summer, each student with a faculty mentor. This is a great opportunity to apply before or after the KSP to conduct research on a Kenya related topic which could result in a potential SYE, honors thesis or even published work in the future.
Fulbright: This prestigious U.S. Government program awards hundreds of year long research fellowships annually to U.S. students wishing to pursue post-graduate research abroad. Graduating seniors who are U.S. citizens can apply during the fall of their senior year to spend up to 1 full year abroad conducting research after graduation. The program is highly competitive and takes a great deal of advanced planning and work to put together a competitive proposal. Those interested in applying for a Fulbright to Kenya should contact Dr. Matt Carotenuto to discuss the application process and potential research ideas (its never too early to start thinking about this).
Many KSP alums have used the skills and lessons they learned in Kenya in a variety of career paths. Some have pursued post-graduate work in African studies leading to careers in academia, international development and government service. Other alumni credit the cross-cultural communication skills and eye opening experiences on the KSP to their success in fields of business, education, finance, journalism or medicine. In the end the KSP allows each student to experience a variety of diverse cultural settings where students often learn as much about themselves as they do about Kenya. To learn more about the diverse paths of many of our alums please check out our alumni profiles, read the "Habari Gani" section in the St. Lawrence Magazine and visit our Facebook page.
In the past several years, a number of students have used their KSP experience to land internships with The Boma Project, led student trips back to East Africa via Putney Student Travel or Overland, or been selected for a Peace Corps assignment in Africa. Whatever your interests we encourage you to talk with your academic advisers and Career Services about the variety of ways you can professionally build on your KSP experience.