Travel Programs

Cultural Explorations in Morocco

Based in the cities of Rabat and Fes, you will spend seven days experiencing the culture and languages of Morocco firsthand. Through meetings with formal and informal representatives from a variety of education institutions and site visits to the Ministry of Education and Moroccan schools (as their calendar permits), you will gain a greater understanding of Arab culture as experienced in Morocco.

Morocco is a country whose citizens must acquire facility in more than one language to be able to participate fully in civic life. Among the languages spoken are Amazigh (Berber), Moroccan Arabic, Standard Arabic, Spanish, and French. These linguistic competencies reflect Morocco’s indigenous past, its prominence as a crossroads of Arab civilization over many centuries, and its recent legacy as a European colony. A major topic of discussion and reflection will be how Morocco’s educational system fosters national unity and pride while encouraging the multilingual competency of its citizens. Finally, you will explore the role language plays in forming and maintaining cultural identity in both Morocco and America.

2020 Course Dates: July 18-26

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  • Two Sample Days

    Rabat: Arabic and Arabization

    9:00 AM Introduction to Arabic and Arabization
    12:00 PM Group lunch
    2:00 PM A conversation with public and private school teachers
    4:00 PM Arabization and Education lecture and visit to Tour Hassan
    7:00 PM Group dinner and reflection

    Fez and Sefrou: Rural Roots

    9:00 AM Depart for visit to Sefrou, Culture Vulture NGO
    12:00 PM Lunch in Sefrou
    2:00 PM Return to International Institute on Languages and Cultures (INLAC), Language and Gender lecture
    4:00 PM Tea time teacher roundtable at INLAC (see partner organization below)
    7:00 PM Cooking lesson and dinner at INLAC
  • Instructor: Susannah Bien-Gund

    Susannah Bien-Gund, MSEd, MA, has worked with language learners in many different contexts, including elementary, middle, high school students of French, Arabic, and English in the United States, as well as urban and rural contexts in Morocco. She lived in Fez, Rabat, and Massa, Morocco from 2008 to 2010, investigating language policy and pedagogy in Moroccan schools as a Fulbright Scholar and has been traveling to Morocco since then to study, teach, and conduct research. More recently, Susannah managed the Adult Education Program at the Arab American Association of New York, working with immigrant adult learners and activists in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. Susannah received her MSEd in Elementary Education from the University of Pennsylvania, an MA in Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages from Hunter College, and a BA from Swarthmore College, where she majored in Linguistics and Languages with Arabic and French. During the 2017-18 academic year, Susannah was an English Language Fellow at Yunnan Normal University in Kunming, China, working with future educators at the university and traveling around the country to conduct teacher trainings and workshops on teaching and language learning.

  • 2019 Program Fees

    $2,950 per person to earn 60 CTLE hours or 6 CEUs

    Includes:

    • Hotel (double occupancy)
    • Meals,
    • Local transportation,
    • Bank Street faculty program leader,
    • Guest speakers, and
    • Cultural experiences.

    We have left airfare travel out of this budget, so you can make the plans that work best for you, including the possibility of extending the trip at the beginning or end of the group experience. We anticipate taking a morning flight to Casablanca and traveling by train to Rabat.

    Additional costs include:

    • Airfare to Casablanca. (A recommended flight will be optional for those who want to travel together.)
    • Travel insurance
    • Two meals
    • Alcoholic drinks
    • Souvenirs, optional evening activities.
    • Single occupancy accommodations available for an additional $250.
    • 1 graduate credit option will be an additional $912; 2 graduate credits will be an additional $2,524. Coursework will be due four weeks after the program.

    Bank Street Cooperating Teacher Vouchers and Bank Street Staff Vouchers will decrease the program cost to $2,250.

    This program is open to all educators. Bank Street affiliation is not required.

  • Partner Organization: International Institute on Languages and Cultures (INLAC)

    This course is greatly enhanced by our work with the following partner organization:

    International Institute on Languages and Cultures (INLAC) aims to foster dialogue between cultures and peoples, especially between the Islamic world and the West. Global unrest and the tragic events of September 11, 2001, have highlighted the urgency of promoting communication between civilizations and societies, especially the youth of the Islamic world and the United States. INLAC was founded as a structured forum for such a communication through both academic and cultural channels.

    Cofounders Moha Ennaji, Senior Professor of Linguistics and Cultural Studies, and Fatima Sadiqi, Senior Professor of Linguistics and Gender Studies, both at the University of Fez, recently co-edited Gender and Violence in the Middle East  (Routledge, 2011); Women in the Middle East and North Africa: Agents of Change (Routledge, 2010), and Migration and Gender in Morocco (Red Sea Press, 2008).

Photos from previous trips to Morocco

Here are some snapshots of our time in Morocco last year.
  • Morocco Fez University
    Al Qarawiyyin University dating back to 859
  • Morocco Fez
    Leather dye vats, Fez
  • Woman sitting on a curb with children playing nearby in Rabat, Morocco
    Street in Rabat
  • Moroccan marketplace photographed by graduate student
    Fruits and spices at a local market

Testimonial
When I originally registered for this course, I believed it would be an incredible experience. However, I did not realize that it would so deeply affect me on a personal and professional level. As an educator, I will forever be changed by this journey.
Anonymous