Why Penn State New Kensington? Our Global Programs
Students studying at Penn State New Kensington benefit from a unique program, one that sets this campus apart. Since 2007, the campus has been uniting to celebrate a foreign culture for a year at a time as a part of its Country of Focus program.
A global education close to home:
Not only do students have access to all of the study abroad opportunities offered through Penn State Global Programs, but they also have a local opportunity to be deeply exposed to a foreign culture.
The ‘Year Of’ celebrations help to expand the global perspectives of our students. The lectures, the concerts, the in-class projects, and the foods all help to show students that their possible experiences of the world around them are much more than they could have imagined, said Bill Hamilton, assistant professor of biology and co-coordinator of Global Programs on campus.
2011-2012 Countries of Focus:
This academic year there are two countries of focus: Kenya and Tanzania.
Students, faculty and staff, and the campus community will spend the year ahead participating in cultural activities.
Highlights of the cultural programs so far during this academic year include:
- Guest lecture, “Human Origins at Olduvai Gorge” by Nina Jablonski, Distinguished Professor of Biological Anthropology at Penn State
- Campus visit by this year's first year summer reading program book author, Robin Wiszowaty
- Guest lecture, “Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship Ventures in East Africa” by Khanjan Mehta, Director of the Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship (HESE) Program at Penn State.
Reflecting on successful past ventures:
Last year’s country of focus was Spain, and the year-long celebration culminated with a 7-day trip to Spain during spring break. More than 130 students have participated in previous international campus trips to date, and you can view a map of where we have been.
When the group returns to New Kensington, student travelers often reflect on their experiences abroad. Here is some of their feedback.
This trip was a great cultural experience. Learning about other cultures rounds out the college experience and can only make us better people and better prepared for the future.
A trip like this is a challenge to open your mind. It changes your ideas of what the world is like.
We need to learn about people and places that are different than those we have grown up with. The sense of discovery and newness is incredible.
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