Please note that all module payments are non-refundable & non-transferable. Passport points may NOT be applied to the initial deposit. Passport Points are only applicable to international modules.
If you have a question about module, please contact Nicole at email.
What is May Module?
In order to enrich Centenary's curriculum, we offer a variety of short courses each May. These courses explore topics of general or specialized interest not normally offered in Centenary's semester and summer courses.
All students on catalogs prior to 2014-2015 must complete one Module for graduation, but an additional Module may be applied towards the hours required for graduation.
Centenary's Module courses literally take place across the globe. Some are offered on campus, whereas others involve study and travel in other institutions and nations. Because of the variety of options available, many students attend Module courses that serve the additional purpose of fulfilling the COMMUNITY and/or the CULTURE requirements of the Trek Experience.
In order to travel abroad you must have an official passport valid for at least six months after you return to the States. The process of registering can be lengthy, so make sure you begin early!
All students going on a May Module are required to attend one of the scheduled orientation sessions. Orientations will be held in the spring semester.
Before You Travel
Be sure to look at the forms you need to fill out before you travel, as well as helpful resources for traveling.
Center for Disease Control
Check the Center for Disease Control (CDC) before traveling to make sure you are caught up on your immunizations and aware of all health travel alerts.
2015 International Modules
Click on module titles to expand entry details.
ARGENTINA: Religious & Biological Diversity in Buenos Aires & Patagonia
Instructors Spencer Dew & Cristina Caldari Dates May 4-May 22, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $4,300 Enrollment Limit 10 Credit Type Module and CU Credit Credit Hours 4
One of the most religiously diverse countries in South America, and a “megadiverse” country with an extraordinarily high number of ecosystems represented within its borders, Argentina provides rare opportunities for students to pursue first-hand work in religious studies and biology. This interdisciplinary class will immerse students in encounters with an analysis of living religious communities and cultures while also exploring the history, practice, and issues associated with various approaches to the biological sciences.
• Religion Learning Objectives: 1) By critically examining the contours of lived religion in contemporary Argentina we will come to a deeper understanding of the roles and dynamics of religion in contemporary society, interrogating in particular issues of pluralism and the relation of religion to laws and regimes of power, 2) come to a deeper understanding of the religious history of Argentina, where a diversity of Christian beliefs and practices coexist alongside Muslim and Jewish communities that, after waves of migration, have taken on deeply entrenched Argentine identities. The resurgence of “tribal” piety, the origination of legends and veneration practices revolving around “folk saints” as well as imported evangelizing faiths such as the Latter Day Saints or Krishna Consciousness round out this portrait of diversity. 3) We will study the relation between religion and a range of cultural and artistic expressions, from monuments and architecture to contemporary art of protest and critique.
• Science Learning Objectives: 1) We will learn about how the beef and dairy cattle industries contribute to the economic status of the country by understanding the contributions of large and small, family-owned, farms, as well as multi-farm co-ops. 2) We will compare and contrast Argentine and US agricultural practices as they relate to food animal product production efficiency, and 3) examine the issue of sustainability as it relates to the different resources provided for agricultural practices by these two environmentally-diverse countries.
AUSTRALIA: Journey Down Under
Instructors Barbara Davis & Lea Stroud Dates TBD, 14 days in May 2015
dates subject to change
Estimated Costs $4,400-$4,500 Enrollment Limit 18 Credit Type Module & CU Credit Credit Hours 4
This Module allows students the opportunity to interact with the various cultures of the Australian people. Although Australia is commonly referred to as the “land down under,” the country has a significant impact on global economy and business. Formerly agrarian in nature, the economy of the country has evolved so that Australia is now a competitive player in diverse international markets. Originally, native indigenous peoples and convict settlements comprised the majority of the population. Today, the country is primarily populated by people of British descent. That being said, Australia is a tolerant and inclusive society—a nation built by people from many different backgrounds. Vietnam, China, Greece and the United Kingdom are among the main countries from which Australians have migrated. Cultural diversity has become a touchstone of Australia’s national identity. Participants in this module travel to Sydney, Brisbane, Noosa and Cairns, Australia to explore the history, culture and social environment of the country. Interaction with native Australian citizens will take place on a daily basis. Key differences between the social and cultural aspects of the people of Australia and the United States will be examined.
FINLAND: The Finnish Miracle
Instructors Katherine Brandl & Mark Miller Dates May 6-May 27, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $3,200 - $3,500 Enrollment Limit 15 Credit Type Module and CU Credit Credit Hours 4
The Finnish Miracle: How investments in education helped transform a poor, war-torn, agrarian country into one of the wealthiest and most advanced countries in the world.
This module will explore the culture and country of modern Finland. The elementary/secondary education system of Finland is widely regarded as one of the best in the world, as is its system for teacher training. Students will learn about education in Finland and how it intersects the culture, politics, history and economy of this Nordic nation.
FRANCE: Americans in Paris-The Quest for the Good Life
Instructors Jeff Hendricks and Bruce Allen Dates May 4 – May 17, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $3,095 Price subject to change depending upon the airline ticket costs at the time of purchase Enrollment Limit 20 Credit Type Module & CU Credit Credit Hours 4
If you are lucky enough to have lived in Paris as a young (person), then wherever you go for the rest of your life, it stays with you, for Paris is a moveable feast. - Ernest Hemingway
At the end of World War I, Parisians danced in the streets with British, Canadian, and American soldiers to celebrate the end of the war. The party continued into the roaring 20s, when artists like Cocteau, Picasso, Chagall, and Man Ray; intellectuals like André Gide and Colette; performers like Josephine Baker; and expatriates like Gertrude Stein, Ernest Hemingway, Ezra Pound, and F. Scott Fitzgerald flooded Paris's cafés and bistros. Whereas Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin loved Paris during the 18th century as the city of Light and Reason; Ernest Hemingway and the Lost Generation of the 1920s and 30s were attracted to Paris as a site of artistic energy and cultural tolerance; Americans (and many other nationalities) today visit Paris because it has come to represent the embodiment of "the good life." In this module we will examine this proposition by living for two weeks in Paris and asking each student to compare aspects of French culture with aspects of their own culture, with the goal of wrestling with the question of what it means to live a “good” and “meaningful” and “quality” life.
This module—"Americans in Paris: The Quest for the Good Life" – will examine numerous texts by American writers, artists, musicians, and intellectuals about Paris. We then ask Centenary students to compare and contrast their own experience of Paris with their own lived-experiences in the U.S. and with these readings from American writers, philosophers, statesmen, and artists who have traveled to Paris since before the American Revolution. We ask students to focus their cultural comparisons around the following topics, picking one from the following to write about in-depth: 1) religion, 2) food, 3) art, 4) music, 5) fashion and dress, or 6) transportation. As much as it's possible, we will try to live as the Parisians themselves: we will buy bread and cheese and ham from the corner markets; we will wash our clothes in the hotel laundromat; we will negotiate our way around the city using public buses and the metro; we will live for two weeks amidst some of the world's greatest historical monuments and art. All the while we will be reading, observing, taking notes, and talking to the French that we meet about our impressions and our thoughts.
Finally, the ultimate goal of this class is not only to learn about another culture, in this case one of the great cultures of the world, but also to use that knowledge to reflect deeply on our own cultural background and heritage and to try to answer the question: "what does it mean to live 'the good life'"?
GREECE: Life Amid the Ruins
Instructors David Havird & Lisa Nicoletti Dates May 6 – May 20, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $3,000-$3,200 Enrollment Limit 20 Credit Type Module & CU Credit Credit Hours 4
Wherever you go in Greece—on the mainland or the islands (of which we’ll visit three)—ancient Greece is present. This, the conjunction between the past and the present, will be our theme as we experience Greek culture in Athens, where we’ll take our bearings from the Acropolis; on the island of Naxos, where the marble doorway to a never finished archaic temple frames the harbor town; on the sacred slopes at Delphi, where 21st-century scientists detected the fumes that induced the oracle’s prophetic high; at a still active Byzantine monastery, where the 10th-century founder’s mummified body is an object of religious pilgrimage; and in the Peloponnese, where we’ll “drink the sun” at a seaside resort while “reading the ruins” at Mycenae, where Clytemnestra stabbed her husband, Agamemnon, in his bath; at Nemea, where Hercules, whose “blood” we’ll taste, lost a finger to the lion; and at Corinth, the Roman city where Paul stitched tents and preached. We’ll be conscious of following in the footsteps of such famous literary travelers as Lord Byron and Henry Miller, selections of whose work we’ll read along with work by Greek authors. Each of you will become an expert on some topic of Greek culture and share the expertise as we explore urban and village life on foot and by public means, reflect on Greece’s aesthetic and intellectual contributions to the ancient and modern world, attempt to communicate with our hosts in their language, consider the effects of the economic crisis, and come to appreciate the food, music, dance, religious practices, and other customs of a resilient people.
Instructor Chris Ciocchetti & Christopher Parker Dates May 6 – May 27, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $3,000 includes all food and activities in Haiti Enrollment Limit 9 Credit Type Module & CU Credit Credit Hours 4
Zanmi Lasante has provided a preferential option for the poor since 1985. One of it’s founders, Paul Farmer, was the subject of Tracy Kidder’s Pulitzer-Prize winning biography Mountains Beyond Mountains, and he went on to become a leading figure global public health. He currently heads up the respond to Ebola in Africa. We will stay at the Zanmi Lasante hospital campus in Cange, a rural village in the mountains. We will explore Cange and the surrounding villages by foot. We experience daily life in Cange and learn about attempts to change it. We will see first hand how aid projects can go wrong and ones which work better. We will dance to twoubadou music. We will spend more of our time in the country-side, though we will take a short trip to Cap-Haitien during the visit. Haiti will test challenge us physically and emotionally. We will meet amazing people along the way who will help us understand Haiti and ourselves.
All students must take anti-malarial medication
No smoking during the trip
INDIA: Religions of Northern India
Instructors David Otto Dates May 4 – June 2, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $4,000-$4,750 price dependent upon number of participants Enrollment Limit 20 Credit Type Module & CU & CO Credit
Students will explore the major religious traditions of Northern India, with special attention granted to the traditions and teachings of Tibetan Buddhism.
1. To study Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Jainism and Islam in the socio-cultural context of Northern India
2. To study Tibetan Buddhism under several high lamas (Rinpoches)
3. To visit the major temples and shrines of these religious traditions, including the Taj Mahal
4. To establish an email relationship with a Tibetan nun or monk two months prior to departure and spend significant face-to-face time with their email partner while in Dharamsala, India*
5. To provide students an optional opportunity to fulfill their Service Learning requirement while in Dharamsala.
NICARAGUA: Tropical Biology
Instructors Scott Chirhart Dates 16 days between May 5 and May 28, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $2,500 Enrollment Limit 10 Credit Type Module & CU OR CO Credit Credit Hours 4
The course will be an analysis of the fauna and flora on a 150 acre finca. It is a working dairy farm surrounded on two of the three sides by a tropical dry forest. The students collect samples of the fauna or flora on the finca and catalog the collection. A special attempt will be made to learn about the natural history of several species to include in the database.
In the spirit of Gaviotis, students will participate in sustainable development projects based on methane generation, solar energy, or other projects.
Lectures on the characteristics and formation of Mesoamerica and Nicaragua will be given. The Holdridge Life Zone System and its application to the tropical dry forest will be an important biological focus. Techniques for the collection, care and preparation of specimens will be taught and used during the module.
Trips to several points of interest will be made during the 15 days of the module. Among these will be trips to Granada, Masaya and to a fishing port, La Boquita. Other trips will be to points of biological interests: Lago Nicaragua, Reserva Mombacho, the Pacific Ocean and a tropical dry forest preserve and active volcanoes.
CHOIR TOUR: Musical Explorations - Central European Music
Instructors David Hobson Dates May 4 – May 20, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $4,500 Enrollment Limit 30 Need permission of instructor to enroll Credit Type Module & CU Credit Credit Hours 4
The rich legacy of music of the Germanic peoples in Central Europe is not only pronounced in the geographic region, but has extended to influence art music world wide for centuries. The music of Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Wagner, and others are considered to be central to the so-called Western Canon of art music. However, the unique lens of this course will examine these composers and their music in their original contexts whilst also observing the current cultural impact and activity of this music within the modern Central European culture. Students will be able to discern differences of performance practice, cultural pride, and prevalence of this music as part of daily life in Central Europe. Students will observe first hand historical sites that remain active contributors to the modern culture.
• Objectives: To explore the rich history and culture of the music of Central Europe, both past and present.
• Students will engage in an intensive study of some of the most prominent composers in music history: Schutz, Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Schumann, and many more.
• Students will not only study the legacy of these musicians in their historical locations, but also examine the current active state of their music within a Central European context and culture.
•Students will additionally explore how the music of these famous composers has influenced other elements (both musical and other cultural significance) of Central European Culture. Folk music such as Schrammelmusik (folk music for 2 violins, contra guitar, clarinet, and often an accordion) and especially the Landlier (dance in ¾ time popular throughout Central Europe) were often set by serious art composers, and indeed pave the way for the influential Waltz. Also, modern research suggests a unified culture of Central Europe through the lens of cinema, art, literature, and politics, as well as several other cultural identifiers.
• Students will engage in musical interactions with the target culture through performance, both as an active participant as well as in the audience.
2015 Regional Modules
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MISSISSIPPI DELTA: Encounters at the Crossroads-Art, Music, & Literature of the Mississippi Delta
Instructors Michelle Glaros & Michael Laffey Dates May 4 – May 18, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $1,600 Enrollment Limit 10 Credit Type Module & CU Credit Credit Hours 4
By visiting the Mississippi Delta (which cultural critics claim begins in the lobby of the Peabody Hotel in Memphis and stretches south through the cotton fields along the Mississippi River) students gain an understanding and appreciation of the music, visual art, architecture, mythology, literature, and history of indigenous artists who represent the fullest flowering of culture created in the unique encounters between Europe and Africa, industry and agriculture, and privilege and poverty. The exploration of such cultural productions as Delta Blues, rock and roll, and soul music; Outsider or Self-Taught Folk Artists; and the literature of William Faulkner, Richard Wright, and Tennessee Williams will provide students with the opportunity to make connections between this uniquely rich subculture and the broader American culture it has so profoundly shaped. By the end of the module, students will appreciate the indispensable contributions Delta artists and culture have made and continue to make to the world the students inhabit.
o Ever wondered what lay at the end of Lonely Street besides “Heartbreak Hotel”?
o Ever wondered where the Rolling Stones got their name?
o Ever wondered what it really takes to get your “mojo workin’”?
o What IS the price for stepping on his blue suede shoes?
o What DOES it take to get some R.E.S.P.E.C.T?
In this immersive module, students will find answers to these and many more questions arising from the creative soul stew that bubbles in the birthplace of rock and roll. By conducting field work while visiting and engaging with the Mississippi Delta, students will gain an understanding and appreciation of these artists who will provide them with the opportunity to make connections between the Delta’s unique and rich subculture and the broader American culture it has so profoundly shaped. By the end of the module, students will appreciate the indispensable contributions this region’s artists have made and continue to make to the world the students inhabit.
If you would like a sample syllabus, contact Professor Glaros (mglaros(at)centenary(dot)edu) or Professor Laffey (mlaffey(at)centenary(dot)edu).
2015 Local Modules
Click on module title to expand entry details.
- Note: Local Module Costs do not include the cost of room and board for the duration of the Module for those on catalogs prior to Fall 2014.*
CHIMP HAVEN: Intercultural Engagement at Chimp Haven National Chimpanzee Sanctuary
Instructors Jeanne Hamming & Jessica Alexander Dates May 5 – May 29, 2015, dates subject to change Estimated Costs $500 Enrollment Limit 16, not recommended for students with a peanut allergy Credit Type Module & CU Credit Credit Hours 4
This module invites students to explore the meaning of “culture” and “intercultural engagement” in the context of our relationship to non-human primates. Students on this module will explore key works in cultural primatology and animal studies, and will apply that understanding during extensive observation of chimpanzee social groups at Chimp Haven National Chimpanzee Sanctuary. Students will consider such questions as:
• What is culture?
• Does culture exist among non-human animals, and if so, how do we study those cultures?
• What implications does our intercultural engagement with non-human primates have for our ethical relation to other animals? To other humans?
None of these modules fit your unique interests or career goals? Develop an Independent Module.