Semester at Sea Spring 2014

Over the past four months, I’ve been working on Semester at Sea scholarship applications. Today I received word that I have been awarded one of two nationwide CY Tung scholarships, and will be taking part on the Spring 2014 Semester at Sea voyage.

Thank you to my family, my proofreaders, and my reference letter writers. Also a very strong thank you to Mrs. Joyce, the Naples Council on World Affairs and everyone involved with YES Abroad/AFS. I’m sure I wouldn’t be where I am today without all of you.

Now for the fun stuff…

What is Semester at Sea?

Semester at Sea, run by the Institute for Shipboard Education, is a  nonprofit study abroad program administered by the the University of Virginia. The mission of ISE is to educate individuals with the global understanding necessary to address the challenges of our interdependent world.

I will be on this traveling cruise boat university for four months from January through May 2014.  The boat sails around the world, making stops in four continents. During the voyage, I will be taking 12-15 college credits in classrooms on the ship.

So you’ll be spending a semester taking classes on… a boat?

Yes sir’ee! The MV explorer is home to about 720 undergraduate students every semester. It was built in 2002 for the Royal Olympic cruise ship company.

MV explorer

What is the CY Tung scholarship?

The C.Y. Tung Program in Sino-U.S. Relations is in honor of C.Y Tung, who was instrumental in the founding of Semester at Sea. Tung, a Chinese shipping magnate, founded the world’s first global shipboard educational program in 1963. Tung was a visionary global leader in the critical importance of multi-country study abroad and cross-cultural understanding among young people.

The curriculum focuses on the socio-cultural, policy and economic interactions between Chinese and Americans to prepare future leaders to better understand each other’s cultures and work together for mutual benefit. The program intends to build on, and to fulfill, program founder C.Y. Tung’s original vision for shipboard education.

The program is led by a distinguished faculty in residence and includes rigorous courses on Chinese and American relations, history, culture, economics and diplomacy; visits from distinguished Chinese and American lecturers; excursions to educational and cultural sites in China; and scholarships for Chinese and American students.

Which countries will you be visiting?

semester at sea map

  • Embark: San Diego, CA, United States
  • Hilo, Hawaii, United States
  • Yokohama, Japan 
  • Kobe, Japan 
  • Shanghai, China 
  • Hong Kong, China 
  • Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  • Singapore, Singapore
  • Rangoon, Burma
  • Cochin, India
  • Port Louis, Mauritius
  • Cape Town, South Africa
  • Tema (Accra), Ghana 
  • Takoradi, Ghana 
  • Casablanca, Morocco
  • Debark: Southampton (London), England

How long do you spend in each country?

Roughly 4-6 days.

That’s it for today, as I have a very long Chinese vocabulary quiz to study for in the morning. Under 3 more months until Spring 2014!