I spent four months studying with the Arcadia Center for East African Studies in Arusha, Tanzania.
The program’s core course was titled Peace and Conflict in East Africa, in which we studied institutional mechanisms for conflict resolution in the region and on a continent-wide scale.
"Though the classroom experience was important, the most educational experiences I had in Tanzania occurred on the streets."
The curriculum emphasized the structures of institutions such as the UN, AU and EAC and how those structures influence their capacities to effectively resolve intra-state and inter-state conflict.
Though the program was focused on this particular course, the curriculum as a whole was much broader, and we were given the opportunity to explore other areas of interest within the social sciences. In addition to Kiswahili, I studied health issues in Africa and gender development in East Africa, both of which incorporated field visits into the curriculum. We were given the opportunity to take several field trips to local health clinics and women’s organizations in attempts to gain better insight of the issues we were studying.
Though the classroom experience was important, the most educational experiences I had in Tanzania occurred on the streets. Each day I met someone new, and every conversation gave me a fuller understanding of the community.