Amman, the capital of Jordan, provides students with unique opportunities for study abroad. Jordan is a moderate Arab state coming to terms with political responsibility, social change, and the effects of regional conflict. The country has made enormous strides recently in health care, literacy, and democratic and economic reform. However, it remains challenged by a lack of natural resources, environmental concerns, economic and social issues, and the impact of Palestinian immigrants and refugees, who now make up more than half of the nation’s population.
More recently, Iraqi refugees have been pouring into the country and changing the demographic and physical landscapes. This makes Jordan an ideal place for students with interests in development, social change, and political reform, as well as for those with an interest in Islam, Arabic studies, or with a general interest in the Middle East to launch their studies in the region.
About the Program
The Amman, Jordan program is offered through Hobart and William Smith Colleges' affiliation with the School for International Training (SIT), an organization that has placed U.S. students in rigorous, highly specialized programs throughout the world for decades. HWS students will join other students from colleges throughout the U.S. to share coursework, excursions, and the study of place. A unique feature of the program is that all students will design and carry out, in consultation with SIT and HWS faculty, a four-week long independent field study project within the city of Amman in any of a broad number of academic areas. See more at SIT’s website.
All students will enroll in three courses PLUS the independent field study project for a total of 4 HWS course credits. These classes are: Intensive Arabic, Seminar in Modernization and Social Change, and a Field Study seminar in research methods. For a detailed description of these courses and the full academic program please visit here.
This program is suited to students in many fields, but will be of particular interest to those studying Middle Eastern studies, economic development, international relations, gender studies, politics, environmental studies, religious studies, and sociology.
This program is open to juniors and seniors (sophomores may be considered in exceptional cases) in good academic and social standing with a minimum GPA of 3.0. Due to the challenging nature of study abroad, and this location in particular, student academic and disciplinary records will be carefully screened. Preference in admission will be given to students who have already undertaken one or more courses in Middle Eastern studies. All admitted students will be required to take an additional Middle East content course prior to departure.
Students will live in homestay accommodations in safe neighborhoods in the city of Amman. Host families will provide daily meals and will provide each student with the experience of modern Jordanian family life. In addition, there will be a one-week experience in a rural Bedouin community during the semester, where accommodations will be more modest.
The short excursions planned will highlight Jordan’s natural history and resources and show the contrasts between urban and rural Jordan. Students will visit Petra (a World Heritage Site), the Wadi Rum desert, and the port city of Aqaba. If conditions permit, there will be an excursion to Egypt, enabling students to compare and contrast Jordanian policies and culture with this neighboring country.
Students will be charged standard HWS tuition and fees plus a $600 administrative fee. This will cover tuition for a four-course semester, health insurance, and program-related activities and excursions. Note that no room and board charge is included. Students will pay room and board fees directly to SIT.
Additional expenses not covered include airfare, books, visa, immunizations, and personal expenses (laundry, entertainment, ground transportation and independent travel). We estimate airfare for this program at $1200-$1400 from the East Coast, books at $250, and visa/immunizations at $200. It is difficult to give an accurate estimate of personal expenses because student spending habits differ considerably. We would suggest a minimum of $1200 above and beyond meal and accommodation expenses. However, students on a tight budget should be able to manage with less. If you are concerned about finances, we strongly encourage you to talk to the CGE staff who can offer information and advice based on our specific situation.
HWS students must complete all components of the Global Education application in order to be considered for admission to this program.
This program is offered every Spring semester.
All components of the application must be submitted online by the published deadline. Specific deadline dates are set each semester and typically will be in late September/early October (for Fall programs) and late February/early March (for Spring programs).
IMPORTANT: The handbook(s) below is/are the most recent handbook(s) published for this program. A new version, with updated information, will be made available each semester. Program participants will receive their updated handbook approximately 2-3 months prior to their program’s start date.
Please DO NOT MAKE TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS until you have received final confirmation of the program start/finish dates for the specific semester you are attending. Dates included in versions of the program handbook intended for previous semesters do not necessarily apply to future programs.
NOTE: The information above is subject to change. Please see the CGE for more information.
Resources for Smart Travelers
Rick Steve's Packing Tips!