Senegal: School for International Training - Global Security and Religious Pluralism

Senegal is a nation rich in art and culture, especially music.  In the School for International Training: Global Security and Religious Pluralism program, students study in Dakar, the capital of Senegal. Students examine competing narratives of the causes of global insecurity and how Senegal's fascinating mix of religions forges peaceful coexistence and inclusive politics.  The country has more than 26 different ethnic communities (with Wolof being the dominant group) giving students a vibrant and in-depth look at the traditions, customs, and culture of each ethnic group. A minimum cumulative 2.80 GPA is required for admission to this program.

Course Overview:

Topics of study include the role of religious tolerance in Senegalese life, the relationship between religion and state, regional security policies, and international and regional institutions for peace.  Some seminars include: Colonialism, State, and Society, Re-thinking Global Security, and language study.

Students must also enroll in an Independent Study Project or Internship program.

Independent Study Project:

During the last four weeks of the program, students will conduct an Independent Study Project, pursuing original research on a selected topic of interest. This is the cornerstone of the program and culminates the students' study in Senegal. 


The program includes three trips: Morocco, Gorée Islqnd; qnd Joal-Fadiouth Island. In Morocco, students learn about how Sufi orders have shaped relations between religion and politics in Morocco. Meanwhile, Joal-Fadiouth Island will offer students a chance to study religious coexistence. On Gorée Island, students learn about the slave trade period during the 18th and 19th centuries. 


Homestays: For six weeks, students live with a Senegalese family in Dakar, followed by two shorter homestays in rural areas of the country.  SIT tries to place two or three students in the same neighborhood or village.  Most host families are middle-class and are either within walking distance or a 20 to 30 minute bus ride from the SIT building.