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A practiced hand paints a thanka. Photo by Cara Starnbach, North India Program.

A Word About Electronics!

Hi there! We love seeing some introductions come in – keep them coming!

We often get questions about electronics – phones, internet, computers, etc. So let’s address them now!

1) Computers, I-pads, smart phones: In an attempt to really ground and authenticate your experience in India, we ask that you leave at home any device that can connect to WIFI. This includes: computers, iPads/Tablets, iPod touches, e-readers (like Kindles) and smart phones. Our experience has shown that this simple step goes a long way to helping students be present in India. If you show up in India with any of these sorts of devices, they will live in the instructor bag for the duration of the trip and we are not responsible for lost or damaged devices. Much of the course we will spend in remote areas of India with little to no internet connectivity. In the places that do have internet, there are internet cafes you can use for checking email or sending messages to friends and family. Have faith – it will be okay. Students often welcome this opportunity to disconnect from our overly connected and busy lives back home.

2) Cameras: Bring them! Keep in mind that since you won’t have access to your smart phone, you may want to bring another way to take pictures. Especially when we’re outside of the city, electricity connections can be spotty so you may want to bring an extra battery for your camera.

3) Music/MP3 Players: Many students (and instructors) enjoy bringing their own music on the program. Small, simple music players can be great on long travel days, however they can also take away from the experience when in home stays or interacting with the local community. MP3 players and other electronics can be an unnecessary display of our privilege and wealth in a place where not everyone can afford such luxuries. Therefore it is important to be aware of when and how we use music players, if you choose to bring them. Once we are all together, our group will establish guidelines for appropriate use.

4) E-readers and reading material: Please do not bring an e-reader. They are another expensive electronic device to keep track of, charge and keep from getting wet or damaged! Also paper books (like maybe something off the recommended reading list in your CPM?) are awesome because then we can share and trade books with each other!

Please post if you still have questions.
Your Instructor Team (Saurabh, Hemant, & Laura)