July 7, 2016

Macaulay’s Kenan Scholars Visit Ireland and Northern Ireland

 

(l-r) Ryan Schulte, Sharon Richardson, Ilana Gelb, Sophia Ebanks and Michelle Sheu

(l-r) Ryan Schulte, Sharon Richardson, Ilana Gelb, Sophia Ebanks and Michelle Sheu in Ireland

Five of Macaulay Honor College’s William R. Kenan Scholars are taking a two-week trip to Ireland and Northern Ireland for an in-depth engagement with the literature, landscape, and the culture of peacemaking in both countries. 

The Kenan Scholars include Sophia Ebanks '18 (City College), Ilana Gelb '16 (Baruch College), Sharon Richardson '16 (Brooklyn College), Michelle Sheu '18 (Baruch) and Ryan Schulte '18 (Hunter College). Their program-of-study combines contemplative practice, environmental immersion, and face-to-face interaction with local stakeholders—poets, activists and scholars who will shed light on the area’s recent past and current processes of reconciliation.

This dialogue-based learning experience will also feature focused engagement with works by the Irish writers Samuel Beckett and Seamus Heaney, as well as a series of writing intensives. Mike Lamb, Ph.D, Macaulay’s Thomas R. Slaughter Scholar-in-Residence, says that their hope is to develop a different tone for study abroad—meditative, conversational, spacious—with an emphasis on immersion into the local, rather than simple tourism.

“It’s possible to travel thousands of miles just to sit down in a classroom and pick up where we left off before departure: engaging on precisely the same terms we do at home,” said Dr. Lamb. “Our aim is to create an alternative, an opening to something new."

Cameron Stewart, Macaulay’s Student Writing Specialist, who developed the curriculum with Dr. Lamb, is excited to investigate and explore Beckett’s resonance with students.

“Ireland’s literary tradition is staggering,” said Stewart. “By engaging with some of these landmark texts, students will obtain a vocabulary to better capture their experience abroad.” 

The trip is from July 14 to July 29, 2016.

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