High School and Community College Educators' Program to Bosnia and Albania, summer 2017

The University of Arizona Center for Middle Eastern Studies (CMES) completed another successful educational trip in Bosnia and Albania for K-12 and Community College educators.


The University of Arizona Center for Middle Eastern Studies (CMES) partnered with Maricopa Community College (MCC) Office of International and Intercultural Education to organize and implement a Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Curriculum Development summer program to Bosnia and Albania.

Made possible by a grant from the Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program, this program took 7 community college educators from MCC and 7 high school teachers from throughout Arizona on a four-week curriculum-building trip to Bosnia and Albania in summer 2017. The program is based on similar successful programs CMES has offered since 2000 that focused on Morocco, Turkey, Syria, Cyprus, the lands of the former Ottoman Empire, and Oman-Zanzibar.

Bosnia-Albania Travel Seminar: "Balkan Borderlands: Multi-Culturalism, Identities, and Histories in Europe’s Muslim Countries"

This curriculum-building project took educators for three weeks in Bosnia-Herzegovina and one week in Albania, both beautiful countries in the Balkans (southeastern Europe). The travel portion of the program took place from Saturday, May 27, 2017  through Monday, June 26, 2017. The program enabled the participants to study the ways in which Europe's Muslim countries have negotiated identities in the geographic/cultural space between Europe and the Middle East, and to integrate area studies as well as Bosnian language exposure into many segments of the curriculum. Two Arizona personnel led the group: Northern Arizona University History PhD and University of Arizona Director of Educational Outreach Lisa Adeli (the program’s Scholar Escort) and Maricopa Community College Director of the Office of International and Intercultural Eduation Kathryn Howard. 

The program was academic, experiential, and practical. Participants learned about the history geography, culture, music, literature, and art/architecture of Bosnia and Albania from Adeli, local experts, and museum/site visits. Teachers also received 40 hours of instruction in the Bosnian language and learned about the complicated linguistic history of the Balkans. Travel, visits to museum and cultural sites, and interaction with local people gave participants experiences and insights that they brought back to the classroom – along with photos and cultural artifacts purchased as part of the project. All participants received 90 hours of professional development credit. 

Who Participated

- 7 full-time faculty at one of Maricopa Community College's campuses
- 7 high school educators who teach or develop curriculum in Humanities, Social Sciences, Languages, or Fine Arts.
- All are educational leaders who have commited to creating lesson plans and giving presentations on what they learned during the program.

Pretravel Program

Maricopa Community College organized a full-day Global Forum on the Balkans to prepare the participants for an intesive cultural and educational experience. Participants also took several hours of Bosnian language, which was conducted online by Lisa Adeli.  

Implemented Itinerary 

For the full itinerary, click here.

Curriculum development and presentation:

 During the program and/or upon their return to the U.S., each participant developed and implemented an individual curriculum project (directly applicable to his/her classroom or school) and participated in the creation of a group language/linguistics instructional module. Following their return from the travel program, participants were required to give at least one presentation during a school or professional event or to a community group.

The participants lesson plans can be found below:

Community College Lesson Plans:

Social Justice Art, by David Bradley. 

Selected High School Lesson Plans:

Whose Land is it Anyway? by Linda Burrows.