MICA Facilitates Exchange Program With University Of New Mexico
MICA facilitated an exchange program for the students of PGDM-C 2014-2016 batch, over duration of one week with the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, United States of America. The course was titled “Intercultural Engagement” and took place between 9th March and 14th March 2015. Eight students from both the first and the second year combined, along with two faculty members which included the President and Director, MICA were participants in the program. The study tour was conducted as part of the three-way exchange program between MICA, University of New Mexico and University of Southern Denmark.
Says, Dr. Nagesh Rao, President and Director, MICA, “When I was in college, my parents often urged me to go abroad – to study or to visit. We didn’t have money to do it and so my father would say, “Get a scholarship and go! It will change you in the most amazing and important ways.” And he was right – one has to leave one’s own borders to learn about your own culture. The UNM-USD-MICA exchange was one such experience for our students and for us.”
Intercultural Engagement is a student-instructor-arranged intercultural immersion experience featuring grouded learning, collaborative research and service, or similar meaningful interactions with people from a culture or subculture different from one’s own, according to the Communication and Journalism Department, UNM website.
“It is a graduate-level exchange with communication scholars” Prof. Lillian Kelly, coordinator of the exchange program said. “Graduate students who are studying communication and faculty who support their scholarship, attend this exchange.” The theme of the course was “Breaking Bad”, which is a loose term, and could mean the popular TV Series, but primarily meant challenging norms and conventions. The six day program hosted ten speakers. It began with a three day stint at Albuquerque and the other three days were spent at Pueblo, Santa Fe and Taos.
Anila Saldanha of PGP-1 claimed “We got to see things through the lens of a TV show. That was exciting! We understood cultural nuances and explored the intercultural intermingling of ideas and conversation.”
Another student Aditya Saraf said “Cultural experience and learning is a two way street and the study tour to New Mexico facilitated us brilliantly to engage with international students and to exchange our ideas and perspectives on topics like ‘Breaking Bad’, psycho-geography, discourse analysis, the power of silence etc.
By the end of the tour, most students agreed that there is something intangible about being able to speak with other people from other places. They were of the opinion that such programs help you become a better person and expand your horizons.