BSC Office of Communications

News from the Hilltop

Jan. 10, 2007

Birmingham-Southern students engaged in January Interim term of learning, travel

BIRMINGHAM, Ala.—Birmingham-Southern College students are once again engaging in a month-long term of non-traditional learning. Students are spending January involved in service-learning, study and internships locally, nationally, and internationally as part of the college's Interim term.

Interim courses and projects this year include art, music and theatre, science and research and the study of topics such as Americanism; the science and mythology of sleep and dreaming; an investigation of the culture of digital communication including cell phones and websites; the politics of vulnerability, response, relief, and reconstruction of disasters and mass emergencies; and the use of famous Harry Potter novels to study Astronomy.

Service-learning courses include living and working with Urban Ministry in Birmingham's West End and the Black Belt region of Alabama; and serving with a team on a collaborative project focusing on economic development and human rights in Ecuador.

Other local service-learning and study projects include participating in SaveFirst, an Alabama financial literacy initiative, and an immersion into local Hispanic communities working with organizations such as HICA, the Literacy Council, La Casita, and Children's Hospital.

Other travel courses include exploration and study of coral reef ecology and dolphin behavior at the Institute for Marine Sciences in Roatan, Honduras; visiting major cultural and historical sites in Italy; studying human rights issues at the University of Cape Town in South Africa; sailing along the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean aboard a two-masted schooner; visiting Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia to explore Southeast Asian history, culture, politics and economy; exploration and discovery of the Pacific Northwest via Seattle; study of culture in Prague, Vienna and Budapest; immersion into the language and culture in Buenos Aires, Argentina; study of the process of democratization in Eastern Europe with visits to Germany, Hungary, Poland, the Czech Republic, and Russia; and the study of the Apostle Paul with journeys to Asia Minor, Greece, and Italy.

Birmingham-Southern's Interim term is a period each January in which students develop their creative potential and independent study skills by exploring one topic of interest. This intensive program of learning offers students unique opportunities to further experiential enrichment through projects, independent study or research, foreign study, and challenging and unusual internships. Students gain academic credit for their experiences.

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