Thailand photo

June 1 to 16, 2019

Led by Joseph A. Manickam, Tony Brown and Kyle Miller Hesed, this transcultural studies course in Thailand will center on the use of the arts – specifically visual and performing arts – toward the mitigation of conflict, though participants are not expected to be artists. We will travel to four distinct regions of Thailand, experiencing different facets of a complex country in Southeast Asia. Along this journey, we will enter communities off the beaten track and engage with stories of hope and transformation along the margins of society.

Itinerary highlights


  • Orientation and study of Thai culture
  • Meet with Imam at Haroon Mosque
  • Overnight train to Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai

  • Study Thai culture and history at Payap University
  • Meet with the Buddhist Abbots at Wat Suan Dok, a Buddhist temple founded in 1370 C.E.
  • Meet with members of a local Sikh community working alongside other faith communities in their neighborhood to address communal issues
  • Visit a local elephant refuge
  • Tour historical and cultural sites

Tak Province

  • Visit the Mae La Refugee Camp
  • Engage with students, teachers and community leaders at the camp. As appropriate, participants will engage with community members through their specific areas of interest

Southern Thailand

  • Engage with religious leaders, young business owners, artists and others working toward peace
  • Tour historically significant sites of conflict and peacebuilding
  • Debrief on the beaches of Patani

elephants in Thailand

Travel details

  • Participants are responsible for their own airfare to and from Thailand. Participants are welcome to travel to and from Thailand with trip leaders or arrange their own itinerary.
  • Each traveler is responsible for obtaining their own passport and necessary visa.
  • Passport must not expire before December 2019.
  • For U.S. citizens, visas are not required for travel to Thailand if the stay is less than 30 days. All other citizens are responsible for researching and obtaining visas as required.


This course is open to anyone age 18 or older. *Due to the modes of transport to be used, reliance on local communities for some meals and various places of lodging, we may not be able to provide adequate support for individuals with special physical, dietary or emotional needs.

places of worship in Thailand

Academic credit

Students taking this trip for college credit should enroll in IDS 120 T Transcultural Term in Thailand. This course may be taken for 1 or 2 credit hours (with $50 per credit hour charged through student accounts). One credit will consist of an eight-week orientation course on campus over the second half of the Spring 2019 semester, with an optional second credit for academic work done in Thailand. The orientation is required for anyone taking the trip for credit and highly recommended for all participants.


Program package: $2,000 plus airfare (for the 2019 trip)
Covered expenses include all domestic travel within Thailand, lodging, most meals, museums, parks, shrines and cultural events.
**Passport and visa fees, immunizations, souvenirs, personal items and some meals along the trip are the sole responsibility of the participants.

photos from Thailand