WELCOME

WELCOME:

As anyone who has participated in this program will attest, there are no words or pictures that can begin to adequately capture the beauty of the scenery or hospitality of the people in Cape Town. Therefore, this blog is merely intended to provide an overview of the program and a glimpse at some amazing adventures and life-changing experiences had by the students and staff of this program who have traveled together as co-educators and companions on the journey. As Resident Director and Faculty Advisor since 2008 it has been a privilege and honor to accompany an incredible variety of wonderful UConn students to a place we have all come to know and love.


In peace, with hope,
Marita McComiskey, PhD,
Assistant Professor in Residence
Women’s Studies and Cape Town Study Abroad
University of Connecticut

Resident Director Bio


Cape Town 2012
Marita McComiskey, Assistant Professor in Residence in Women’s Studies at the University of Connecticut, mother of 4 sons, and dedicated co-educator, has devoted her life to integrating her commitment to working for peace and social justice with family life, career aspirations and activism.  She completed her PhD in sociology at the University of Connecticut with her dissertation on “Passionately Political Peace Activist Parents: Nurturing the World while Politicizing the Family.” 

Having coordinated the WS internship program since 1991, in 2008 she was recruited to serve as resident director for UConn’s Study Abroad in Cape Town Program.  She currently teaches and coordinates the WGSS internship program in Storrs each fall semester while traveling to Cape Town each spring semester with a group of UConn students to serve as faculty advisor and mentor as they become immersed in the culture through their three-day a week internships as well as taking classes designed to place their individual experiences within a broader global context.

Marita previously served as Associate Director of Women’s Studies from 1996 -2001 and 2006-2011, and as Director of the program from 2002-2006.  She created and taught WS first online course and over the years has developed and taught courses including Gender in Everyday Life; the Internship Seminar; Race & Gender in a Global Perspective; Study Abroad Pre-departure and Re-entry courses; First Year Experience Honors Course on Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack: Introduction to Women's Studies in the Social Sciences; Women & Violence; and Women & Poverty.

Marita’s human rights and international work has included: serving on the Planning Committee and as facilitator for 6th & 7th International Human Rights Leadership Training Programs in Storrs, CT; serving on the planning committees and as facilitator for UNESCO Chair European Regional Human Rights Forum in San Marcello Pistoiese, Italy, as well as on the planning committee and as facilitator for the UNESCO Chair & Institute of Comparative Human Rights with the Government of Rwanda International Leadership Program in Kigali, Rwanda; she traveled with UNESCO Chair Delegation on fact-finding mission to Accra & Shama, Ghana; and for two years taught classes for UConn’s Institute on Social Entrepreneurship Program for student leaders from Western & Northern Africa.

In the last 10 years Marita’s teaching and human rights work have been recognized by her receiving numerous awards such as: UNESCO Chair of Human Rights Award in Recognition of Practical Contributions to the Expansion of the Frontiers of Human Rights and to Fostering Global Solidarity; a Certificate of Professional Excellence in Advising presented by the Undergraduate Student Government; the Sociologist for Women in Society Feminist Activist Award; the CT NOW Leadership Award “Prudence Crandall Outstanding Achievement in Social Change through Education”; Women’s Studies Leadership Award in Recognition of Ongoing Commitment to Feminist Academic & Activist Excellence; the Outstanding Women of Connecticut Award presented by United Nations Association and UNIFEN for work in fields of equality, peace and development; and Phenomenal Women of the Year Aware presented by Mu Sigma Upsilon in recognition of Outstanding Service to UConn and Community while Promoting Sisterhood Among All Women.  In addition the Cape Town Study Abroad Blog developed by Marita and her students was selected by the Hartford Courant as the Best Educational Blog from Connecticut's Top Blogs of 2012.
Cape Point 2008


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