Last week my professor brought a brochure to class about a Teacher Institute in New Mexico. I half-heartedly glanced over it, thinking "yeah right, like I can afford to go to New Mexico." The Institute is called "Understanding and Teaching Islam," it lasts for two weeks in July, and the participants stay in the Mosque-school complex built by a famous architect. It sounded awesome, but very unlikely. There were lots of roadblocks, the least of which was my advisor approving the program as an elective course that I could transfer.
The more I thought about it, the more I realized I might be able to pull it off. After all, two weeks in July is perfect (and short)! So I emailed my advisor with all of the info and she responded today. She said, "The course sounds quite interesting and apropos for this day and age. I am usually a stickler for focusing your elective course work within your selected area of specialization; however,this topic is important to all content areas. Therefore, I would approve it for your program." Hooray!
Here's the icing on the cake - I would pay for the graduate credits through the New Mexico Highlands University. Ever heard of it? Me neither - must be why their classes are SO DARN CHEAP! The institute pays for books, materials, room and board, so all I have to pay is graduate credit and a plane ticket. In the end, as it turns out, it would be cheaper for me to fly to New Mexico for two weeks than it would be for me to stay here at UK and take a three or four week class! Can you believe that??
I'm so excited about this class! I get to travel somewhere and learn about something that I truly don't know enough about. Just for clarification (Mom) - I'm not going to a mosque to convert to Islam. I'm going to a school to study about Islam and to better understand it so I can service a wider variety of students. Y'alls know that multicultural education, diversity, culturally responsive teaching, etc. is right up my ally. It's like this program was made for me! I can't wait!
All I have to do now is get accepted to the darn thing. Wish me luck. If you want to check it out, here's the link.