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2017-2018 Domestic Intercultural Immersion Experiences (DII) Award Recipients

Please contact the faculty/staff leaders directly for information about participating in a specific program. Programs below listed in chronological order, starting in Fall 2017.

  • Partners in Health and Safety
  • Embracing the Somali Experience in Midwestern Public Schools
  • Something New Alternative Spring Break
  • New York City Aspiring Artists
  • Water Protectors of Wisconsin
  • Shriner's Hospital Education/Nursing Collaboration
  • Child Welfare and Advocacy Skill Building

APPLY TO A DOMESTIC IMMERSION PROGRAM (link to online application)

Project Location: West Central Wisconsin
Project Dates: Fall Semester 2017 or Spring Semester 2018
Target Student Population: Program is limited to 6-8 students each semester. Senior nursing students with some Spanish language proficiency will be given preference.
Faculty/Staff Leader(s): Lisa Schiller
Corresponding Course: NRSG 428 Nursing Leadership I (3 credits)
Cost of Participation: No fees are expected, except for lunch during the 5-day immersion
Abstract: This immersion provides screenings, immunizations, and education to mostly Latino farm workers at large dairy farms. Students integrate knowledge of agricultural health and safety and understanding of rural and Latino culture into their nursing practice, by providing on-site education and basic health screening. The program includes preparation in collaboration with partners, culturally sensitive services to farm works, and debriefing sessions upon completion of the experience. 

Project Location:
Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota
Project Dates: January 7-12, 2018
Target Student Population: Program is limited to 14 students
Faculty/Staff Leader(s): Dandrielle Lewis and Frank Watkins
Corresponding Course: None. Students meet 4 times before the excursion and once after
Cost of Participation: $75 program fee + estimated $100 for meals
Abstract: This program provides students with opportunities to expand their cultural competencies, pedagogical practices, and depth of personal interaction surrounding topics related to Somali experiences and to social justice issues in general. This comprehensive educational program combines more than 24 hours of classroom-based instructions, a week-long, full-day, field placement in specially selected schools that serve primarily Somali youth, and daily excursions in and around the Somali community in Minneapolis/St. Paul.

Project Location:
Clarkston, Georgia; Atlanta, Georgia; Selma, Alabama
Project Dates: Spring Break 2018
Target Student Population: Experience is limited to 50 students
Faculty/Staff Leader(s): Joshua Nesja and Nicole Schultz
Corresponding Course: None required, but students have the option to take CJ/WMNS 111: Gender, Race, Class & Communication during spring semester. All students meet in the spring for pre-trip preparation, and have guided reflection sessions upon return
Cost of Participation: $200 program fee (includes meals)
Abstract: No one has been able to successfully explain the impact of this trip in mere words, you truly have to take the leap and experience the magic that happens yourself! This program will explore the issues of poverty, community segregation, and refugees in the southern United States. Participants will complete an 8-hour King Nonviolence Training Seminar, engage in community service, meet with community leaders involved in current school integration and community redevelopment efforts, and meet with leaders of the historic Selma Voting Rights Movement. The 2018 program will visit the largest population of resettled refugees in Clarkston, Georgia. The struggles faced by refugees in the US, due to societal structures and heightened attention from the media, are significant and students will learn about these issues from a humanitarian and social justice perspective.

Project Location:
New York City, New York
Project Dates: Spring Break 2018
Target Student Population: This program is limited to 12 undergraduate composition, voice performance, applied instruments and BA BME, and theatre students with a focus on voice performance.
Faculty/Staff Leader(s): Kenneth Pereira
Corresponding Course: MUSI 491: Special Topics, NYC Travel Seminar (1 credit during spring semester)
Cost of Participation: $150 special course fee + estimated $250 in meals
Abstract: UWEC music and theatre students will be engaged in the study of composition, voice performance, applied instruments, and theatre during one week in the major metropolitan area of New York City. Students will live, perform, study, attend performances, conduct interviews, and interact daily with artists and people form a wide variety of backgrounds and perspectives. Students will also collaborate, interact, and share music with students from the Brooklyn High School for the Arts and York College.

Project Location: Bad River Indian Reservation, Red Cliff Indian Reservation, Enbridge Corporation Refinery, Menominee Indian Reservation
Project Dates: Spring Break 2018
Target Student Population: Program is limited to 35 students, all students are welcome to apply
Faculty/Staff Leader(s): James Oberly and Heather Ann Moody
Corresponding Course: AIS 291 (3 credits) during the first half of spring semester
Cost of Participation: $250 special course fees (includes meals)

Abstract: The Water Protectors of Wisconsin is an experience to help students understand the history, culture, and science of humans and water in the Lake Superior Watershed, home to several tribal nations, as well as within the wider North American setting. After several weeks of in class content, students will spend a week visiting three tribal nations and two companies to learn how they are protecting the watershed. Students will gain historical, cultural, and scientific knowledge along with understanding the interconnectedness of humans and water. In meeting the Water Protectors of Wisconsin, students will critically analyze and wrestle with the historic dilemma in US history; the contest between one group’s rights versus another group’s rights, in this case, the rights guaranteed by treaty on the one hand, and on the other, private property rights to use the watershed for economic development.

Project Location: Sacramento, California
Project Dates: May 25 - June 3, 2018 (tentative)
Target Student Population: Program is limited to 12 students in Elementary and Secondary Education 
Faculty/Staff Leader(s): Janine Fisk
Corresponding Course: ES 495 Directed Studies in Education or NRSG 395/495 Independent Study (1 credit)
Cost of Participation: Special Course fee $200 + estimated $100 in meals
Abstract: Students will be immersed in a diverse educational setting to bridge the gap between health care and education. The Shriner's Hospital of Northern California provides support services for children with burn or orthopedic or birth defects, receiving mostly Latino patients from the surrounding states where Spanish is a dominant language used at the facility. Nursing students will work with advance practice nurses and doctors to learn how to care for children with significant trauma. Education students will be working with patients undergoing treatment and preparing them physically and mentally for the transition back to school after traumatic injury.

Project Location: Springfield and Chicago, Illinois
Project Dates: June 18 - 27, 2018
Target Student Population: Program is limited to 20 students majoring in Social Work, Nursing, Criminal Justice or Education
Faculty/Staff Leader(s)Jamie Tester 
Corresponding Course: none, but preferred previous courses in IDIS 100, SW 385, or SW 383 and demonstrated interest in child welfare
Cost of Participation: Estimated program fee $100 + $300 in meals
Abstract: This immersion partners with University of Illinois - Springfield and their Child Advocacy Studies Program to provide UWEC students with the opportunity to develop hands-on skills needed to be competent professionals in the area of child welfare. The program challenges students to think critically about the interplay of race, class, and other social group perspectives and that impact on child welfare. Students will spend 5 days at the University of Illinois - Springfield facility of a mock house and courtroom to practice skills of observation, documentation and courtroom testimony, and then spent 4 days in Chicago participating in site visits within the field.