FALL 2021 Travel Course Offerings


FALL 2021 Three-Credit Travel Course Offerings

Course Topic and Destination Leader
BUS 105T Entrepreneurship and Risk Taking Della Corte
This course is designed to introduce students to the fundamental concepts about being an entrepreneur, especially in the high-tech area, and the related concept of risk taking in order to stay competitive in a fast-moving economy. Students will explore preeminent thinkers in the field of entrepreneurship and risk taking, as well as today's leading minds, entrepreneurial visionaries and landmark ideas that have established this innovative area of business. Students will look at the basis of entrepreneurship and at fundamental approaches to creating and building a startup business. Students will explore and discuss case studies, articles published in business-related periodicals and sections of published works on entrepreneurship. This course includes an Academic Travel component to private and public entities that sponsor entrepreneurial activity generally in Switzerland, France and Italy.
BUS 107T Entrepreneurship and Value Creation Mehra
This introductory course combines theory and practice of creating value through entrepreneurship. The objective is to gain a deeper and first hand understanding of the challenges of creating a new business and discuss the most important aspects of entrepreneurial activity in today’s complex business world. The course will in particular focus on the elements of an entrepreneurial mindset that are required for converting ideas into opportunity. This mindset is as valuable to growing a family business, for launching a corporate entrepreneurship project or in leading a high impact social venture. Coursework will include introductory elements to the innovation process, business model canvas, market research, lean-start-up approach and undertaking a feasibility study (including risk assessments). Working in small groups with local community mentors, students will utilize an off-campus site in Ticino to propose start-up activities that can benefit the community and explore feasibility to provide opportunities for Franklin students. Through self-reflection using tools such as the Myer-Briggs Inventory and the Intercultural Development Index, students also become aware of their own individual intellectual and intercultural competencies as members of creative teams. The Academic Travel component of this course includes intensive groupwork on location, meetings with local entrepreneurs in Ticino, and visits to cultural sites to understand the context of this unique Canton. The course culminates with a student presentation (feasibility report) on proposed start-up opportunity.
BUS 243T Personal Finance (Germany) Suleiman
This course introduces students to the basic concepts and tools needed to make wise and informed personal financial decisions. The content of this course is presented from a practical point of view and with an emphasis on the consumer as the financial decision-maker. The primary objective of this course is to help students apply finance practices to their own life. For example, students will learn how to plan and manage personal finances, how to obtain credit to purchase a home or a car, and how to invest personal financial resources in stocks, bonds, and real estate. Students will also learn how to interpret financial and economic news that have an impact on personal finances. The travel component of this course will include visits to several cities in Germany such as Frankfurt and Berlin. During those visits, students will be introduced to financial institutions that are relevant for personal finance such as the ECB, the Frankfurt stock exchange, commercial banks, and wealth management and real estate firms.
CLCS 247T French Cultural Institutions Roy
Nineteenth- and early twentieth-century French authors and artists were instrumental in shaping the imaginary of the “Orient”, with a myriad of paintings and texts housed for public consumption in national cultural institutions. Students will use the French case to explore the politics of representation: the creation and objectification of an Oriental “Other”. On-the-ground field study in museums, archives and galleries of Paris (the former colonial capital) and Marseille (the “Gateway to North Africa”) will help students to investigate the ties that bind the visual arts and literature with the exercising of knowledge and power, and to read literary and artistic works as shaped by their cultural and historical circumstances. The strong Arab and Berber presence in both cities today, in particular from France's former colonies in North Africa, will provide the impetus to question how contemporary writers and artists explicitly and implicitly engage with and renegotiate these “cultural artifacts”, and what broader significance this might have for questions of representation and identity, Self and Other, in the (not only French) present. Students will read contemporary texts by authors such as Leïla Sebbar and Assia Djébar and explore work by visual artists including Zineb Sedira and Zoulikha Bouabdellah, using their, and our own, “encounters” in the Louvre, the Pompidou Center, the Arab World Institute, MuCEM and smaller galleries to consider the significance of reappropriating the gaze and of the relationship between visual pleasure and politics, while questioning who art is “for” and where the “representation business” takes us. (The course may count toward the French Studies major in consultation with the coordinator of the French Studies program.)
COM 230T Comm, Fashion, and Formation of Taste Sugiyama
The sense of taste, whether it refers to the metaphorical sense of taste (aesthetic discrimination) or the literal sense of taste (gustatory taste), is a fundamental part of human experiences. This Academic Travel course examines various ways that communication processes shape our sense of taste in the contemporary society. It will explore topics such as the taste for food, clothing and accessories, music, and other cultural activities applying key theories and concepts of communication, fashion, and taste. Ultimately, the course seeks to develop an understanding of how interpersonal, intercultural, and mediated communication in our everyday life plays a critical role in the formation of individual taste as well as collective taste. In order to achieve this objective, field observations and site visits will be planned during the Academic Travel period.
ENV 230T Freshwater Conservation Della Croce
This course explores various aspects of rivers, freshwater lakes, and groundwater aquifers. It provides an introduction to the distinct ecology of these three freshwater systems, their human uses, different approaches to their conservation, possibilities for restoration of degraded systems, and a look at the role that lakes and rivers play in international relationships. During Academic Travel, the class will visit various freshwater systems and will also practice field data collection techniques. Tentatively, the travel will take place in North-East Italy and Slovenia. This course may also include shorter day-trips to local points of interests. Some prior experience of ecology or biology is recommended.
ENV 373T Sustainability Science (Iceland) Hale
This course explores the field of sustainability as well as the science it employs to understand and manage the interactions between human society and the natural world. It examines the development of the concept of sustainability, as well as its importance and application in the contemporary world. It considers current challenges in areas such as biodiversity, climate, energy use, pollution, tourism, and urbanization. It introduces students to some of the tools used to measure and assess sustainable progress, as well as innovative approaches employed to address contemporary problems and effect a transition to a more sustainable society. Throughout the course and during the travel segment, students will experience the practices, successes, and challenges of sustainability in Switzerland, Europe, and Iceland. (MAT 103 strongly recommended.) (This course carries a supplemental fee of 600 CHF (for students invoiced in CHF) or $700 (for students invoiced in USD).
HIS 240T History of Modern Germany Pyka
The meaning, nature, and extent of Germany is a contested issue, and over the last 250 years, depending on time and context, this "German question" has been answered quite differently. The main historical themes and trends of political, economic, social and cultural development are analyzed, from early modern foundations to the 21st century, including in its postcolonial and European dimensions. Given the importance of regional differences for German history, this course will lay special emphasis on a perspective from the 'third Germany.' Thus, the travel component features a major excursion to two of the most important, but not dominating centers of German history, Munich and Nuremberg.
ITA 100T Introductory Italian: Italy Ferrari
This course is designed for students who do not have any knowledge of the Italian language. The course provides an introduction to the essentials of Italian grammar, vocabulary, and culture. The acquisition of aural/oral communication skills will be stressed and, as such, the predominant language of instruction will be Italian. By the end of the course students will achieve proficiency at the A1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. Students are expected to acquire the basic knowledge of the written and spoken structures. Students are expected to read and comprehend short passages in Italian and to draft simple compositions / dialogues. Whenever possible, the written assignments will be designed to foster practical communication skills and encourage efforts towards increased student integration in the local Italian-speaking community. For the travel component the class will visit Naples, Pompei and Mount Vesuvius, and the Amalfi Coast. Students will have the opportunity to practice their Italian language skills.
MAT 115T Measuring the Alps Prisner
People live in three-dimensional space but are restricted to the earth surface which is usually locally flat, two-dimensional. But when entering the Alps, the third dimension of height becomes important when describing location or movement. This is also expressed by the fact that in the mountains a map is not too useful---rather a topographic map is needed. Starting with a description of the Alps or any mountains by topographic maps, or mathematically as functions with two independent variables, students will investigate how certain well-known features are reflected by the topography of the area . Examples are the location of mountain brooks, watersheds, movement of glaciers, avalanches, and rockfall. Students will also investigate the question of visibility in the mountains, whether and how it is possible to predict what can be seen from where. A further aspect is GPS technology. During the travel, the class will visit various places in the Swiss, Austrian, and Italian Alps, such as Davos, Innsbruck, Villnoess. Students will hike and measure, but will also discuss questions relevant to Alpine life, such as glaciers, avalanches or rockfall forecasts. If possible, the class will also visit places where such research is conducted. The course includes one mandatory weekend hike in September in addition to the ordinary travel in October. Hiking boots are required.
POL 176T International Environmental Politics Zanecchia
The resolution of global environmental problems has been problematic for nation-states. Hence, international cooperation is essential for exploring and applying solutions. This course will first examine the origins of environmental problems facing nations such as climate change, desertification, pollution, and international trade in endangered species. Further topics for investigation will include the impact of globalization and the feasibility of sustainable development in the industrial north and developing south, as well as the effectiveness of international treaties such as the Kyoto Protocol and CITES. The academic travel destination will be within Switzerland, including planned visits to Pro Natura nature reserves and the WWF in Zurich. The experiential component may also include site visits to examples of sustainable development within Switzerland such as Zermatt and Grindelwald, as well as an overnight hike to alpine habitats.
POL 376T International Environmental Politics Zanecchia
The resolution of global environmental problems has been problematic for nation-states. Hence, international cooperation is essential for exploring and applying solutions. This course will first examine the origins of environmental problems facing nations such as climate change, desertification, pollution, and international trade in endangered species. Further topics for investigation will include the impact of globalization and the feasibility of sustainable development in the industrial north and developing south, as well as the effectiveness of international treaties such as the Kyoto Protocol and CITES. The academic travel destination will be within Switzerland, including planned visits to Pro Natura nature reserves and the WWF in Zurich. The experiential component may also include site visits to examples of sustainable development within Switzerland such as Zermatt and Grindelwald, as well as an overnight hike to alpine habitats.
STA 280T Adventures in Printmaking Zdanski
This experimental, introductory course will explore the creative possibilities of media which have largely been considered mechanical, reproductive processes. Brief introductory lectures will introduce and demonstrate the following techniques: simple printing methods that do not use the printing press (direct stamping, stenciling, monotype, frottage); relief printing methods using linoleum, wood blocks and other surfaces; intaglio techniques (dry point). As time permits, collograph and silkscreen printing will also be introduced. The course has the following goals: to gain knowledge of printing materials, equipment and techniques; to produce prints using the techniques introduced during the course; to understand printing techniques in an art historical perspective and acknowledge of printing as a fine art; to construct a basic art vocabulary and develop the skills necessary to critical visual analysis. The travel destination will be to Italy.
VCA 120T Documentary Photography on Location Fassl
This course will investigate the particularities of both documentary and street photography through readings and studio projects. It will shed light on the history of photography; how the visual world communicates, studying the interaction of photography with other visual media; and will pay specific attention to the semiotic potential and challenges of photography. Students will engage in a project that relates to the location of the travel component of the class, documenting a subject of their choice. The Academic Travel destination will be Munich with additional day excursions to Bavaria and Austria.

FALL 2021 One-Credit Travel Course Offerings

Course Topic and Destination Leader
TVL 358 Georgia: Social & Economic Transition Cordon
Georgia was an independent kingdom in the Middle Ages. It came under Russian influence at the beginning of the 19th Century and briefly declared independence during the Russian Revolution. In the early 1920s it was annexed by the Soviet Union and was a Soviet republic until its breakup. Independence and the radical changes that began in 1991 have created tremendous challenges and opportunities. The focus of this academic travel is to understand the history of Georgia, and the changes taking place today. The group will visit the capital, Tbilisi, as well as other significant towns. Lectures, meetings with local officials and visits to cultural landmarks will provide the basis for understanding its recent history and present situation. The travel in Fall 2021 may include Baku, capital of Azerbaijan, a country also undergoing socio-economic transition. If the pandemic situation does not allow travel to the Caucasus, the alternate destination will be Slovenia, a country which underwent this process in the 1990s.