Bryn Mawr, Haverford, and Swarthmore Colleges (the Tri-Colleges) have received a $701,000 four-year grant as part of the Henry Luce Foundation’s Luce Initiative on Asian Studies and the Environment (LIASE) to develop a holistic vision for expanding and integrating opportunities for the study of Asia and the environment throughout the Tri-College curriculum.
At the foreground of this initiative will be the Tri-College Environmental Studies Program (ENVS), the Bi-Co (Bryn Mawr and Haverford) Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, and Swarthmore’s Asian Studies Program. The proposed project will involve 30-40 faculty members and benefit more than 400 students.
Activities the grant will support include:
- A series of workshops and presentations by visiting scholars that will bring together Tri-College faculty from the humanities, natural sciences and social sciences for curriculum development activities focused on Asia and the environment;
- Development of 360° course clusters on Asia and the environment
- Development of a series of interdisciplinary (ENVS-Asian Studies), team-taught courses with a travel component to China.
In addition, the faculty members leading this initiative hope to create:
- Several new curricular modules on various environmental issues relevant to East Asia suitable for incorporation into Introduction to Environmental Studies, the entry point to the Tri-College ENVS minor;
- Up to three new East Asia-centric courses that will count as electives in the ENVS minor;
- A suite of four flexible, rotating 360° course clusters addressing aspects of Asia and the environment from various perspectives; and
- A series of four rotating ENVS-Asian Studies courses, including an experiential learning component in China.
At Bryn Mawr, faculty will use the grant to reoffer the 360° s Perspectives on Sustainability: Disasters and Rebuilding in Japan; Contemplative Traditions; and China and the Environment. A new 360° based on the theme of “food and the environment in East Asia” will also be offered. Bryn Mawr will take the lead on the 360° component of the grant; however, the 360° program is open to students from all three colleges.
Approved by the Luce Foundation’s Directors in November 2010, the Luce Initiative on Asian Studies and the Environment (LIASE) is a competition for liberal arts colleges and formal associations of liberal arts colleges in the United States. LIASE, administered by the Foundation’s Asia Program, aspires to encourage innovative approaches to Asian studies teaching and research at the undergraduate level through the lens of the environment and sustainable development.
The Henry Luce Foundation was established in 1936 by the late Henry R. Luce, co-founder and editor-in-chief of Time Inc., to honor his parents, who were missionary educators in China. The Foundation seeks to bring important ideas to the center of American life, strengthen international understanding, and foster innovation and leadership in academic, policy, religious, and art communities.