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Experiential Learning: 2023 J-Term

As part of its contribution to pedagogy, and in collaboration with the NYU Abu Dhabi Office of Global Education, GEHW’s Kunda Dixit and Sophia Kalantzakos have designed two J-term classes for NYUAD students. Held in January 2023, these courses—“The Media, Climate and other Calamities” and “The Himalayas: Geopolitics and Ecology of Melting Mountains”—led students on a deep dive into environmental studies, the relationship between climate change and geopolitics, and media coverage of the Himalayan climate crisis. Students also traveled to Nepal on a regional trip for topical excursions, combining experiential and classroom learning.



Teaching the Himalaya

  • Discussion

  • Creation


Learning the Himalaya

Student Focused

  •  Debrief 

  • Reflect

“It was an overwhelming sense of admiration that I felt witnessing the living heritage of this amazing country, where traditions and cultural practices are preserved with dedication.”

Hoor Ahli


“This class made it clear that similarities, common concerns and interesting discussions could be found and had with people truly from across the globe. Even though our class was filled with people from various backgrounds, all microfocused on Nepal, we were able to have interesting and productive discussions.”

Andreja Zivkovic


“Nepal’s nature and beauty helped show me why we must keep fighting to preserve our planet.” 

Mohammad Hindieh 


“I felt a profound sense of interconnectedness and a powerful motivation to protect and preserve our planet for future generations.” 

Lina Janajreh

Constantinos Sofikitis 

Professional Photographer

"We don't need objects, we need adventures and this trip to Nepal was exactly this. It created memories that filled my soul."

  • Written notes

  • Videos


  • Geopolitics

  • Religious temples

2015 Earthquake

Harry Jang


"What struck me most about Nepal was the blurring of the line between past and present - as geological disasters strike the region and monuments to its history, the people of Nepal were just as quick to repair and renew what was lost, and to conserve and perpetuate the knowledge that will insulate them against future disaster. me this spoke volumes of the resilience and spirit of the Nepali people in the face of powerful and unpredictable adversity."

Liana El Eid


"An emotion I felt was internal peace. Whether it be touring on the streets during the day or at night, during class time or time with friends, I think that's just the energy Nepal, as a country, has on people." 

  • Inspiring podcasts

  • Difficult questions

Expert panelists

  • New experiences

  • Exploration

Creative thinking

Ivana Drabova

Trip supervisor

"Things take time."

Matthew Abate


"I have been thinking a lot about the duality of shared religious spaces in Nepal. It was really really fascinating to me."




  • Climate Solutions

  • ,

Joe Mrad


"The trip to Nepal for Jterm unveiled the unspoken realities of our planet's suffering, the changing ecologies, and the melting Himalayas, and it left me with an overwhelming sense of interconnectedness and responsibility towards nature."



  • Climate Hotspot

  • Reflection

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