Travel through urban and rural areas of northern India and have the opportunity to strengthen your leadership and social change skills while witnessing the diverse ways in which community development and public health challenges are managed in different social and cultural environments. Participate in an excursion to Nepal.
Peace, Politics, & Human Rights
July 5, 2019APPLY NOW
The program begins with intensive leadership training in Washington, D.C., where you will visit community organizations and explore what it means to be a change maker. Depart for India’s capital, New Delhi, for an excursion to help you absorb, learn, and appreciate the country’s history. Explore open air markets and visit Gandhi’s tomb. Against the backdrop of this dynamic environment, advance your leadership skills and knowledge of global health and its relationship with community development.
You will visit the Taj Mahal, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Through site visits, touring, and interactive discussions in four Indian states, you will talk with local people and your host family about issues relevant ot them such as health care rights, challenges to gender justice, the political economy of health, social determinants of health, caste discrimination, and other critical issues. You will have the opportunity to interact with local youth to see how community development affects their lives.
Experience Indian culture and daily life through a two-week homestay with a family in a mountain village in the Himalayas. You will get to meet with community leaders and grassroots activists. You will also have the opportunity to learn the basics of the Hindi language and practice conversing in markets and restaurants and on train rides across the Indian countryside.
You will then travel to Nepal to learn about the country and culture. During your visit to Nepal, you will have the opportunity to meet and interact with a network of youth and discuss social and cultural issues such as public health and gender rights. You will learn about Nepal’s disaster response, as well as their social entrepreneurship and innovation initiatives.
Continue to advance your leadership skills as you return to the U.S. for guided project planning in Vermont. Throughout your senior year, you will work with a Leadership Institute mentor and cohort of peers to implement a community project in your hometown.
U.S. citizens require a visa for this program.
Must have a high school graduation year of 2020
July 5, 2019 - August 18, 2019
New Delhi, 3 days
Nainital*, 14 days
Hotels and school dormitory
Originally hailing from Cincinnati, Ohio, Emilie currently lives in The Big Apple where she works with Girl Be Heard, a nonprofit that uses theatre to empower young women to be active agents of social change. Before putting roots in the New York concrete, Emilie studied and lived around the world in her quest to better understand how local solutions can change global systems of social inequality. She received a BA in global studies with a concentration in gender studies and youth engagement from Long Island University Global.
Emilie has worked with NGOs such as the Tibetan Women’s Association, the Costa Rican Humanitarian Foundation, and the Center for Community Dialogue and Change (Bangalore’s first Theatre of the Oppressed organization). She is an extremely passionate social justice advocate, long-term learner, and life enthusiast who believes that study abroad can be one of the most meaningful and transformative experiences a student can have. 2015 marked Emilie’s second year as an Experiment group leader; she previously led a program exploring regional identity in France and Italy. When Emilie isn’t traveling, you can find her making vegan experimental baking messes in her tiny Brooklyn kitchen, attempting to teach herself Arabic, and exploring her own ever-changing city!
Sarah Robins is based in the Boston area, where she was born and raised and now works at a charter middle school. She graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, with a BA in international relations and human rights. During college, she also studied in New Delhi, India, through World Learning’s SIT Study Abroad program. Back in Massachusetts, she co-founded “J Street U,” a student interfaith organization focused on conflict transformation in Israel and the Middle East. Sarah has also served as a research assistant for the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, the outreach coordinator for UMass’s Student Union Craft Center, and the leadership development coordinator at Camp Shemesh in Amherst.
While Sarah’s first love is teaching, her second love is travel and intercultural learning. In addition to studying abroad in India, she has lived in Israel and traveled to 21 other countries. Some of her favorite travel memories are of overnight trains through India, colorful markets in the Caribbean, and meeting fascinating people in youth hostels in Europe. When she is not teaching or traveling, she loves canoeing, berry picking, reading, singing, and exploring farmers’ markets.
The Experiment Leadership Institute program begins with an intensive, four-day leadership seminar in Washington, DC. This portion of the program includes trainings, workshops, field trips, group exercises, and discussions with political and NGO leaders and is based on a powerful experiential leadership curriculum.
Learn about Indian culture and heritage in Northern India, while gaining an understating of public health priorities and community development in both urban and rural areas.
You will visit four Indian states—Delhi, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, and Uttar Pradesh—you will be able to perceive, observe and have conversations about key issues shaping the communities and the country’s healthcare landscape.
India’s capital, New Delhi, and the immediate surrounding urban region is home to more than a thousand NGOs actively engaged in the health and development sectors. The National Human Rights Commission, the National Commission for Women, and other rights-based bodies have headquarters in New Delhi. Within this dynamic environment, and the experience which you will get from the trip and interaction with the locals, you will get to advance your leadership skills and knowledge of a critical global issue—health and its relationship with community development—building on the intensive training and leadership sessions you received in Washington, D.C.
During the rural excursion to Bahraich District in Uttar Pradesh, you will be in a position to compare the challenges being faced by the youth in India and the US by interactions and sharing the experience with the girls from the local community. You will experience Indian culture and daily life, especially through the homestay with an Indian host family in a mountain village in the Himalayas. You will get an opportunity to learn the basics of the Hindi language (widely prevalent in northern India), and visit important cultural and historical sites including the Taj Mahal. Other activities during your excursion would include meeting with Indian high school students and other youth who are advocating civic engagement and social change for welfare of the society. Finally, return to the US for project planning sessions, briefings, and brainstorming sessions on a post-program project of your choosing to be implemented in your home community.
Following your month in India, continue to advance your leadership capacity as you return to the US where you and your group spend four days on the School for International Training campus in southern Vermont.
During this portion of the program, you have synthesis and brainstorming sessions, briefings, and a reentry workshop. You also begin working on a post-program project of your choosing to be implemented in your home community.The Vermont portion of the program includes:
Because there are only 15 spaces per Leadership Institute program, the application process is highly competitive. We seek applicants who can take initiative through the application process, particularly because this is a leadership development program. Applicants—not their parent(s)/guardians(s)—are responsible for each step in the application process. It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure his/her application is complete (including references and the financial aid form) before the January deadline. It is highly recommended to complete the entire application early and to check in with The Experiment to ensure the application is complete.
Students will be evaluated on the following characteristics:
Applicants for a Leadership Institute program must submit two references from two different adult teachers, mentors, or coaches; short answer responses; four essays; and a financial aid application completed by a parent/guardian. Applicants will be asked to describe previous leadership roles, learning acquired from those roles, and what the applicant hopes to gain through participation in the Experiment Leadership Institute.
When you start your online application for admission, on the Program Selection page choose either India & Nepal (Leadership Institute): Community Development & Public Health or South Africa & Mozambique (Leadership Institute): Peace, Politics, & Human Rights for your first- or second-choice program. (Enter a third-choice Experiment program that is not a Leadership Institute program. If you are not selected for the Leadership Institute, we will consider your application for your third-choice program.) When you reach the Letter of Reference page of your online application, you will be asked to submit the names and email addresses of the two different adult teachers, mentors, or coaches who will act as your references. Your references will then be sent our online reference form, which is required. Be sure to check in with your references and The Experiment to ensure the forms have been completed and received by The Experiment before the January application deadline.
When you reach the financial aid page of your online application, you will be asked to submit the name and email address of a parent/guardian. Your parent/guardian will then be sent our online financial aid application to complete. Financial information for Leadership Institute students is only required for The Experiment’s documentation of the student range we serve.
Please also note that if you are not selected to participate in the Leadership Institute but would still like to be considered for one of our other summer programs, we can use your financial aid application information to determine your eligibility for one of our need-based partial scholarships. Be sure to check in with your references, your parent/guardian, and The Experiment to ensure the forms have been completed and received by The Experiment before the January 16 application deadline.