Students travel for class credit during interterm

For 13 years, Jack Broughton, an associate professor of finance, has taken students to New York for his

Photo courtesy of Jack Broughton
For 13 years, Jack Broughton, an associate professor of finance, has taken students to New York for his ” A Walk Down Wall Street” course during interterm.

In January 2008, senior Andrew Faubel toured the White House and walked the white steps of the Supreme Court. This January he will be among the daily chaos of the New York Stock Exchange in the Big Apple.

Traveling from one major city to another was not a personal vacation for Faubel. It is one of many travel courses available during interterm, a four week period between winter break and spring semester when various courses are offered.

For the month of January, many Chapman students participate in interterm by taking classes to get extra credits, finish general education requirements and travel worldwide.

“It’s nice sitting at home, but after seven to eight weeks of a Christmas break, you get kind of bored,” said Faubel. “Interterm is a good way to get extra credits and only worry about one class at a time.”

Faubel took the course, “Economics for Public Policy” last interterm, where he traveled to Washington D.C. for a week. This interterm Faubel will be taking the class, “A Walk Down Wall Street,” a four week course consisting of three weeks on campus and a one week trip to New York.

As part of the class an associate professor of finance, Jack Broughton, will take the 28 students to visit a variety of firms, investment banks, hedge funds and the New York Stock Exchange. This course has been offered during interterm for 13 years, but this year will be particularly interesting, according to Broughton,

“People in the middle of [the financial crisis] will be talking to students rather then me telling them about [the crisis] in a classroom,” he said.

For more selective majors and interests, travel courses like “Travel Course – Australia” are also offered during interterm. This course, originally for athletic training students only, takes students through Sydney, Melbourne, Queensland and Canberra to learn conditioning, sports psychology, recovery techniques, training techniques and even work with Olympic athletes.

“This course gives students the opportunity to see different health care systems and different cultures,” said Ky Kugler, director and associate professor of athletic training education program.

But for a true cultural experience, interterm offers the 300-level course titled, “Mind, Self, Society in Tibet Buddhism.” This is four-week long emersion into the Buddhist culture, fixed with readings, films and for the finale, a 10-day retreat to the Shambala Mountain Center in Red Feather Lakes, Colorado.

This intensive retreat consists of daily meditation practices formal teachings, free time, meals and contemplative practices, like Japanese archery and flower arranging, according to Barney McGrane, an associate professor of sociology.

“It’s like studying about the ocean without having ever seen it or gone swimming before,” said McGrane. “It’s important to get as much as you can from the readings before you go [on the retreat] in order to give you some context.”

During the retreat, students experience deep community bonding, according to McGrane. They like to call it the “Buddha Camp,” he said.

“Interterm is beneficial for travel courses because it’s a deep and focused emersion into something for three to four weeks,” said McGrane. “That’s not something you can get in a college semester.”

But students don’t just take interterm courses for the travel experience. Many athletes have to stay around campus in January strictly for practices.

Freshman and softball player, Andrena Calix has required practices during interterm because games start at the beginning of the spring semester.{Even though her practice schedule caused her trouble when registering for interterm classes, Calix doesn’t mind taking any class, she said.

“Six weeks is way too long for a break,” she said. “I would rather take class during interterm to get it out of the way.”}

Since freshman Kelly Self has swim practice during interterm, she decided to load up on courses in order to graduate on time.

As a music major and honors minor, Self has to take 18 units per semester. This January she will take the honors class, “L.A.’s Blossoming Art Scene,” which takes students to artist’s studios every Wednesday.

Like Self, many students participate in interterm to get rid of general education requirements and take that extra class.

Freshman Danielle Hebert, a graphic design major and business minor, is staying far from her cold Connecticut home this January. Herbert will take a business marketing class during interterm to fulfill her minor.

Freshman psychology major, Manal Shehadi, who is taking the class, “Physiology of Health and Disease,” is also doing interterm to catch up on her units.

“Interterm is good for students who are trying to graduate or if you are behind on units,” said Shehadi. “I feel like it takes weight off the person.”

Despite the positive aspects of interterm, some students think that taking only one class will leave them with nothing to do. Freshman Lindsey Saletta is taking “Interpersonal Communication” with a desire to graduate early, but she plans to spend most of her weekends at home in San Diego.

“I’m worried I will be bored because I only have one class three times a week,” said Saletta.

But in order to keep the interterm students together and excited, sophomore screen acting major Mikandrew Perdaris created an interterm 2009 Facebook group.

“Last interterm I had my select group of friends but I didn’t know who else was here,” said Perdaris. “Chapman becomes like a ghost town during interterm and I think people are interested in seeing whose staying around.”

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