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Peace & Conflict Resolution Summer Program

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

The most action-packed, adventurous trip which included everything and more

The London/Amman Conflict Resolution program was both invaluable and unforgettable. This was actually my first time out of the USA and I could not have picked a better program. I have never seen a more organized program with an action-packed and educational itinerary. Being first introduced to London by living in posh Kensington, I got to learn from some of the best professors on the Northern Ireland conflict. By best, I mean Dr. Arthur could name drop and take you back like it was yesterday. I had the honor of being lectured by Lord Alderdice, a life peer in the House of Lords and former speaker of the Northern Ireland Assembly. Something I always have to add, thanks to FIE, all of the students were invited to dine with HRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal and HRH Princess Sarvath of Jordan, and HRH Duke of Kent. Additionally, in the year I participated, we travelled to Northern Ireland for the weekend. Wow! It doesn’t get much more personal than this. Not to mention, the turnover time from travesty to (educational) tourism was remarkable. The most memorable aspect of this mini-trip was standing in the cell where the legendary Bobby Sands died in the protest hunger strike. Other great aspects include visiting Stormont and talking with the Northern Ireland police department. Of course, much fun was had as well with countless pub visits and roaming London via tube thanks to FIE.

Additionally, the Middle-eastern component in Amman, Jordan was equally impressive. Because the Middle East holds some preconceived notions, it’s important to talk about Jordan itself. In a word, very safe and fun. Amman can be quite liberal at times and the area welcomes foreigners. Even being Jewish is no issue in Amman. The after-hours scene has its own Jordanian style as well. It is even safe at dark. Many iftar meals can attest to that. Naturally, it is a bit of a culture shock. The most trying, but fun example is travelling from your homestay to the AMIDEAST building in a taxi, no English. Let me help you out. Look for Abdoun Circle. However, plenty of English is spoken in Amman. AMIDEAST was absolutely phenomenal! Again, the professors and guest speakers were great and they provided me with invaluable information on the Palestinian/Israeli conflict—with the Jordanian perspective never mentioned in western media. These guest speakers, by the way, include past prime ministers and current senators. Also, there were many site visits including refugee camps, travelling to the Dead Sea, and experiencing Biblical Jordan. Also, I would stay on for the extra Arabic portion. I entered Jordan knowing two Arabic words. I left with the ability to construct simple sentences and equally speak and write them. I also placed into Arabic III when I got home.

Overall, the best program I have ever been involved in. The education, guest speakers, extracurricular learning opportunities, and after-hours fun were absolutely indispensable and unforgettable. Many lasting memories were made. Additionally, my fellow peers who embarked on the same trip as me made it the best as well. We all came from different schools and great friendships we made. I would recommend this to any student who wants to have fun while learning and do so for the most cost efficient price. FIVE STARS. Thanks FIE and AMIDEAST!!!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    8

An Incredible Experience - Do it!

I have the most incredible time in Jordan. I was exposed to new kinds of people, food, culture, places, clothing, language and so many other things in a fun and safe way. I cannot think of a better way to learn about conflict resolution and learn more about the Arabic language. The study program was top notch - we met many current and former practitioners for the conflict resolution piece and studied under very qualified and talented teachers for the Arabic immersion piece. My host family in Jordan was incredible. Overall, clearly, I have very fond memories of the program and highly encourage anyone considering to do the program to do so!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    9

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Social Life

    10

Confirming Your Aspirations

I had always had an interest in answering questions and solving problems as a political science major. Having this experience not only confirmed my desire to study Conflict Resolution, but also gave me a firm theoretical framework to use moving forward, not to mention that I've made dear friends from around the world through this experience. A++ I highly recommend it.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Life-Changing

The London-Amman Program is unique in its aim to provide a study tour on the subject of Conflict-Resolution. As a Psychology and Political Science undergrad, I found that no other program was able to capture a discipline which transcends the social sciences. Our group received such a thorough understanding of both regions. As students we were astounded by the fact that our professors were leaders in the field. What deepened our study was the emotional experience of walking through what was once embattled ground and, for the Middle East, continues to be. In the UK, we met with Jonathan Powell, Tony Blair’s Chief of Staff, and spoke candidly with members of the House of Lords and House of Commons. In Jordan, we exchanged theories with the best and brightest professors in the political history of the Arab-Israeli and Pan-Arab conflicts. On the Syrian Jordanian border, our group witnessed the Syrian struggle first hand and met with refugees. That summer, both Secretary of State Kerry and President Obama actually followed the same travel itinerary and were present in Belfast, Ireland and Amman, Jordan while we were there. If I pursue clinical psychology, I plan to study conflict resolution as an alternative for young people in the criminal justice system. No matter what career I choose, this experience will influence how I orient my work. I have done abroad programs in the past and this study tour truly captured our hearts and minds.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Social Life

    10

Trip of a Lifetime

This trip was absolutely academically stimulating, but much of what we learned was outside of the classroom. Both professors, Paul Arthur and Zaid Eyadat, were very well connected and ensured that we were exposed to an education beyond what they as individuals could provide. That is not to say that they themselves weren't excellent lecturers, they were, but there is a difference in being told about a conflict academically and experiencing its effects in real life.

This program is divided into two parts, the first being between London and Northern Ireland learning about the Troubles and the methods of conflict resolution used in that particular case. The second part is spent in Jordan learning about the variety of conflicts in the Middle East and the challenges to finding peace in the region. Each part of the trip involved speaking to many distinguished individuals with interesting insight in their respective fields, but in both parts of the trip there was a single experience that impacted me more than any other.

In the first part of the program we spent a few days in Northern Ireland in order to get a feel for the conflict that we had been learning about. One of the cities we visited was Derry (/Londonderry). The night we were in Derry we went to a Theatre of Witness workshop. In this workshop women from both sides of the conflict discussed their experiences during the Troubles. This served to humanize the conflict. These were real people who had their lives turned around, they weren't on video or in a book, they weren't academics or politicians. These were normal people. It was a unique moment that I could not have had on a different program or under other circumstances.

I had a similar moment in the Jordan portion of the program. Instead of our normal class session one day we got on a bus and drove to the northern desert to speak with a tribal sheik about peace and conflict resolution. While we were there we had the opportunity to speak with an extended family of Syrian refugees. We spoke to them about their experiences in Syria, of their journey to Jordan, and of their treatment as refugees. This gave us valuable insight to the Syrian conflict and the status of refugees.

This program provided us students with unique and incredible experiences. Each day was different and held a new adventure or learning opportunity. I learned more in the few weeks I was in this program than I have in most classes in my entire undergraduate education an in my graduate education thus far. I wholeheartedly suggest that if you are considering this program that you go.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

Perfect program

This program is perfect for any student interested in policy, politics, international relations, the media, cultural immersion - heck, anything you can think of. I had an exercise science major with us on the course.

It was a life-changing experience. Yes, it was cliche but it was real and difficult and I am a better person because of it.