6-Credit Study Abroad Program in Conjunction with the University of Vermont
Changing Communities: Trekking the Forbidden Kingdom of Mustang
In this off-campus program, students explore the history of the Mustang region of Nepal to understand how global forces are impacting geographically isolated communities. Based in one of the most remote sections of Nepal on the border with Tibet, the program introduces young adventurers to a community undergoing profound transitions—culturally, socially, politically, linguistically, and religiously. Through a ten-day initial orientation in Burlington, and then four weeks in Nepal, they examine how this Tibetan Buddhist area has adapted to those changes, and what strategies have emerged for facing further changes in the future.
"It's not just about the credits it's about knowledge you gain from traveling. the story, the history, the people, the environment and learning about yourself."
- Stacia B. (UVM Class 2013)
"Right now is the only time in your life when you can travel without dropping any of your other obligations. Taking a course like this is an incredible way to see the world, while learning, which is an opportunity that most people just don't get. It can be scary to step outside of your comfort zone, but it's always worth it in the end."
- Madison Symes (UVM Class of 2015)
"I honestly can't imagine having done this program with anyone else. I'm not a particularly good tourist myself. I'm often just as happy to read about great sites as to visit them in person. What I love is just being in a different place and exploring how communities work and what makes them tick. Above the Clouds gets that, and makes that possible with their love of Nepal, and with their incredible Nepali staff who love to share their own roots and connection to places, and with ATC's immaculate preparations for everything."
- Professor Abigail McGown (UVM Faculty member running this course)
Students Creating a Legacy
This class has been since 2012 and has been incredibly well enrolled throughout. Each of the amazing students who have signed up for this class has the chance to connect deeply with Nepal and Mustang and most of them have chosen to maintain that relationship. Some have gone on to study more deeply in Nepal, do their thesis work on the region, return to this area in Nepal to volunteer in some of the places that they fell in love with or even joined our office here at ATC. Working with the students and UVM has been a privilege and joy that we look forward to continuing.