See How First Years ‘Talk the Walk’ on Seminar Web Site

By Purnell T. Cropper | January 26, 2010

This past fall, students in the First-Year Seminar Travel Writing: Talking the Walk (FY103.23) left behind some virtual footprints for others to follow, exploring where they went and sharing some of their experiences. Alan Powell, Associate Professor of Communications, says the class Web site shows part of Arcadia’s Promise of global perspectives.

“Many of us will travel to another country, another neighborhood, or even to someone’s home who is quite different from us,” he says. “This is a process of not only discovering who someone else is but also who we are. It is a political act in that people are coming together and interacting with each other in new ways.”

This seminar develops students’ observational and travel skills and integrates their research with their personal experience. Designed around several short trips in the Philadelphia region—some taken individually and others as a class—students explore neighborhoods and natural environments, investigate cultural legacies, and sample ethnic food, fine arts and entertainment. At the end of each trip students create written and visual presentations bringing together their travel experiences with historical and other information discovered about the places they’ve visited.

Talking the Walk, he adds, “is our forum for expressing the exploratory process of discovering new people, places, food, natural environments, and most importantly ourselves. Traveling is a time when we can reinvent ourselves, be other, explore others, and reflect on the roots of ourselves and our home.”