Spring Get-together for International Studies majors

Many of the international studies majors met today for a free lunch, where they discussed when, where, and with whom they’ll be doing their international internship or studies abroad. Countries people are looking at visiting: Korea, Israel, Honduras, and other parts of Latin America.

We also announced the new major: Intercultural Studies; and we talked about courses coming up in the 2013-2014 academic year.

Seniors Mason Graves, Jelissa Myers and Sara Ornelas gave advice to their classmates about planning a study abroad trip.

Did you know that people who are not majoring in International Studies can also go abroad? We have students from other majors going to Ireland and the UK this academic year.

Belhaven International Studies Grad speaks on agricultural mission in Uganda

While Stephen Shelt was attendiStephen Sheltng Belhaven, he went to Urbana 06, where he got fired up about missions in Africa. He decided to major in International Studies, and did his internship in Uganda with Africa Inland Mission (AIM). After graduation, he went back with AIM for a two year mission. But he needed to have some practical skills to offer the Ugandans- so AIM trained Stephen in sustainable  agricultural techniques.

Stephen explained to the Globalization and Culture class last night that the goal wasn’t just to teach people about crop rotation and leaving land fallow- but to train Ugandan nationals who can take up the cause and continue training their own countrymen.

I asked Stephen if agricultural training was a platform for sharing the gospel, or was seen as a valid end in and of itself. “Both” he said. Hearing Stephen talk, I could tell that AIM has developed a robust theology of work, farming, and  environmental stewardship.

Stephen plans to receive more agricultural experience and return to somewhere in the developing world to continue his agricultural ministry.