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MSW students travel to India during Winterim

March 2016

Several MSW students had the opportunity to travel to India during the interim for an elective course in the MSW Program, Mental Health Practice and Policy in India and the US. Locations within India included Cochin, Bangalore, and Munnar.

These students and Dr. Johny Augustine got to attend and even present at a Human Rights Conference, go to a Social Justice variety show, and to meet other students and faculty in the social work field, said one of the attendees, Bre Nelson.

"My favorite part was attending the Second International Colloquium on Mental Health and Human Rights at Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham University", said Nelson.

As part of the course, students attended the Human Rights Conference and were even able to present on certain topics. Dr. Augustine spoke about protecting human rights of persons with mental disabilities through effective social policies. Student Erica Bell, talked about human rights and social work in the United States: advocating for persons with mental illness. Bre Nelson and Megan Konchar presented on Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) and the Lemonade for Life curriculum.

When these hardworking students weren't presenting at conferences, they were able to enjoy delicious food, shop, participate in raising a Chinese fishing net, take boat rides, ride elephants, and enjoyed a sunrise from the top of a mountain.

"Studying abroad is the greatest educational opportunities you will ever be able to take advantage of," Nelson said. "It allows for students to get outside their comfort zones and be immersed in a culture that may have different values, beliefs, and practices than us."

Next year's Winterim study abroad course will be MSW 930 International Social Work in Ecuador.

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