the Brown Daily eraldthursday, February 9, 2012
one o the two Brown students
auatd rm Egypt ast Jau-
ary. Upon returning to Brown,
Labora was in a “weird situation”because the study abroad programwas over but second semester had
already started. She decided totake a leave o absence because
hr utmy rtur.Labra sad hr tm Egyptwas t why pst r ga-
tive. Her experience was “very
humbg,” sh sad, baus sh
realized how little control she had
r th ts that trasprd.
“Tere’s a dogma at Brown thatit’s always better to be somewhereelse, but real eective change, like
the radical societal change that
happened in Egypt, can’t come
rm th utsd,” sh sad.Hr ad t studts study-
ing abroad is to take every oppor-
tunity and obstacle as it comes,
rather than trying to impose one’sown expectations on a given situ-
at.Mha Dawks ’ as dd
not immediately return to Brown
ar th auat.
“When I got back, it was ex-
tremely dicult adjusting,” hesaid. “Tere was this sensationthat anytime something could
explode or go o, or everything
ud g t has.” H has t
yet resumed studies at Brown andhas been working in Louisiana or
“Te transition was too di-icult and too abrupt, and we
wr’t ray g a t tmt prss,” h sad.
Geisler said Middlebury is
monitoring the situation in Egypt
day, wathg th ws ad r-
ceiving country briengs rom theU.S. State Department and Global
Rsu, th prdr that hpd
airli students rom Alexandria
during their evacuation. Since
last November, Egypt has been onthe State Department’s travel alert
st, a st that uds utrs
whose conditions pose signicantshort-term risks to the security o
American citizens, according to
th Dpartmt’s wbst.
“Anytime you send studentsto a oreign country, there is a
certain risk involved, no matter
how much due diligence you do,”Geisler said. Four years ago, Mid-
dlebury was considering imple-
mtg a prgram Syra, but
“we had inormation that made
us hstat,” h sad.
Prior to the protests thatsprang up across the MiddleEast last year, Middlebury had
already been looking to add anextra site in Jordan because the
Egypt program was so successul,
“Everybody is looking at thiswith the understanding that thesituation in Egypt is fuid,” said
Kda Brstu, drtr -
ternational programs and associ-
at da th Cg.
Uprisings continue to occur
across the Middle East, particular-ly in Egypt, unisia, Syria, Yemenand Libya, said Melani Cammett,
director o Brown’s Middle East
studies program and associate
proessor o political science. Even
in countries like Jordan, which
are not mentioned as much in the
hads, pta urst s sta ssu, sh sad.
Jordan is less o a concern at
th mmt, Cammtt sad, du
to its dierent government dy-
namics. Jordan has a monarchy inaddition to multiple political par-
ts, ad ts “marhy has b
very astute at managing politics,”
Protests are ongoing in Egypt,
largely around the issue o the
military’s current role in govern-
mt. Cammtt sad th prtstsha b sussu trms
ousting ormer Egyptian Presi-dent Hosni Mubarak and hold-
ing elections not rigged by the
state. But many key eatures o
th systm ha t yt hagd,sh sad.
Other universities are current-
y ss rstrt trms ur-
rent study abroad options. BostonUniversity, or instance, currently
rs prgrams Lba adSyra.
“We would like to go back,”Geisler said o Egypt. “But we
have to be assured that it’s sae
or the students, and right now we
just d’t ha ugh rma-
tion at this point.” Middlebury
will decide within the next sev-eral weeks whether to reinstate
its program in Egypt or all 2012.Students who applied to study abroad in Egypt or all 2011 werenotied last May that Middlebury was not going to run its program
in Alexandria. Applicants had
been told ahead o time that they
wud b autmatay aptd
to the Jordan program i Egypt
was t a pt.
Te Jordan program, which
took place or the rst time last
semester, worked “extremely well,”
Geisler said. “Academically, it’s
But the non-academic aspects
o the program were not at all
what studts ptd.
“We totally lived in a brothel,”
said Alexa Stevens, a junior at
us University. “Tere was a se-cret passage rom our dorm build-
ing to a coee shop next door
where women would work,” she
said. She described seeing women
wearing long black body cover-
ings and high heels and make-up.
“W wud wdr what’s gg
on,” she said. “Tey were most
“he cae on the irst loor
o the dorm is in all likelihood
a ront or prostitution,” Mid-
dlebury wrote in a letter to the
parts partpatg studts
mid-way through last semester.“Some o these prostitutes may
well be living in the same building
as ur ma studts.”
“We never elt unsae per se,but there was a lot to be awareo in that part o town,” Stevens
said. Jordan has a comprehensivesecret police orce and stable secu-rity system, which helped ensure
rg studts’ saty, sh sad.
Te building, which was pri-
vately owned and not aliatedwith the University o Jordan,
was located in a red-light district,
according to Ayane Ezaki ’13. It
was an “uncomortable place,”
It took two weeks beore Mid-
dbury md th studts t a
dierent building in the same red-
light neighborhood. Ezaki saidstudents were sexually harassedand that she personally had ex-
perienced blatant solicitation. Be-
r thy md budgs, thr
was a robbery, an intrusion and
a dog-killing outside their dorm.
“At pt dd I that my saty was at rsk,” Ezak sad.
Despite unexpected complica-tions related to their housing, Eza-
k ad Sts sad thy arda t wh studyg Jrda.
Ezaki said her Arabic improved
considerably, and the Jordanian
aculty was antastic. But becauseo the language requirements, shesaid she had little choice in select-
g hr urss.I hdsght, sh sad sh wasutmaty gad sh dd t study
in Alexandria especially given theturmoil in the city last November.“I had a crazy experience,” she
sad, but “I’m gad I had t.”
U. approves study abroad in Jordan
takg mr prjts.“W d’t dram bg ay-
more, because we know we are notgoing to get unded or things,” she
Pipkin said the council receives
signicantly less unding than do
studt grg bds at P,
Cornell and Dartmouth and has
only received an average o 37 per-
cent o requested unds over the
past yars.I rsps, Raaj Parkh ’3, a
UFB-at-large representative, saidthe student governments at theseinstitutions have many more re-sponsibilities than does UCS and
noted that nearly all student groupsat the University are underunded.
Last year, UFB was only able
to meet two-thirds o the budget
rqusts, UFB V Char MhaPrhk ’ td T Hrad.
“Te proposal that they are put-
ting orth prioritizes UCS needs
r th ds ry thr stu-dt grup baus thy’d b rst , prptuay, t th studtatty ,” Parkh sad.
While Nelson contends UCS
will not be irresponsible with the
uds, Prhk td that UCS
does not have the “intimate knowl-
edge” o student groups aorded
t UFB, wh rw th budgt r 00 grups arud ampus.
“In essence, it will mean even
less money or student groups thatare already chronically underund-
d,” Prhk sad.
Perchonok said he thinks stu-dents deserve more time to con-
sider the proposed amendment,
which would be the rst UCS con-
stitutional change since 2003. Hesaid the change seemed sudden,
though Nelson said in the meeting
that she has unsuccessully been
attempting to begin a conversationwith UFB or the past our months.Nelson also said in the meetingthat she values student opinion on
the issue, explaining that she de-cided to propose a constitutional
amendment rather than a code
hag as th rmr rqurs stu-
dent approval whereas the latter
“It is trying to make a statementabout valuing the work that is done
hr,” Ns sad th mtg.
Aer a lengthy discussion on
the topic, the proposal passed with
y a w gra bdy mmbrs tg agast t.
“Our projects reach the greatest
number o students, but we can’t
get our own unding or that,” UCS
Communications Chair Sam Gil-
man ’15 told Te Herald. “We haveto go use outside sources o unding
or that which is both inecient
and, especially with the state o
Brw’s as, ry dut, t
nd discretionary unding or those
At the meeting, the council
as passd a statmt urag-
ing the University to incorporatestudent input when deciding on
tenure promotions and announcednext week’s discussion with MarisaQuinn, vice president o public a-
airs and University relations, on
the University’s contribution to the
Funding changes wouldallow UCS to ‘dream big’
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