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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Cape Town, South Africa
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Budget Sheets: Summer
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Program Description:

Young girls dancing in a classroom.THE CITY

Marquette's South Africa summer program is based in cosmopolitan Cape Town, at the southern tip of the African continent.

While living in Cape Town, you will become acquainted with South Africa's rich history and see firsthand how the country is rebuilding itself after decades of government-enforced apartheid. Cape Town's diverse socioeconomic communities will become your classroom and its leaders your techers.

The people of South Africa call their country the Rainbow Nation to demonstrate pride in their racial, ethnic and linguistic diversity. The country has 11 official languages. In the Cape Town area, you will predominantly hear Xhosa, Afrikaans and English.

You will have the opportunity to visit significant South African historical and cultural sites, such as Table Mountain, historic District 6 in the city's center, and Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela and other political prisoners were incarcerated during apartheid. In addition to a spectacular array of wildlife unique to South Africa, you will experience powerful literary and artistic voices, traditional music, delicious foods and diverse architecture.


With an emphasis on the complex context of colonialism, apartheid and global racism, this program will help students explore the exciting work on gender and sexuality being done in South Africa by both academics and activists through online, classroom and service learning experiences. The aim of this program is for students to develop understanding of the history and current status of issues of gender and sexuality in South Africa, to become sensitive both to differences and to common ground with US culture and politics on these fronts, to see the value of transnational and transcultural partnerships, free from domination and subordination, around gender and sexuality. Gender, Sexualities, and Feminism in South Africa and the United States: A Comparison is a study abroad six credit course in Women’s and Gender Studies (WGST) and a three credit course in Social Welfare and Justice (SOWJ) in the College of Arts and Sciences at Marquette University. The purpose of this course is to introduce students to concepts such as gender, sex, sexualities, feminism, Black feminism, and womanism, while also exploring the unique sociocultural issues impacting Blacks in South Africa and the United States. Through service learning experiences students will gain a better cultural understanding of how gender and sexualities impact the experiences of people in Cape Town. Though service learning, students will have the opportunity to apply much of the information that they have learned through course lectures and readings in a real world setting to serve the needs of a community based organization serving marginalized populations in Cape Town. Service learning promotes community engagement, volunteerism, civic responsibility, and activism. Through this experience students will develop a better understanding of the needs impacting communities. 

  • Saturday, July 08th Afternoon: Group Arrival
  • Sunday July 9th 12:00 Guided City Tour
  • Monday, July 10th 09:30 Meeting with Carmelita at Christen Revell, - children
    • 14:00/2pm Visit Service Learning Sites
  • Tuesday, July 11th 09:00 District 6 Museum
    • 16:00/4pm Lecture – Guest speaker
  • Wednesday, July 12th 08:30-16:30 Service Sites all day
    • 18:00/6pm Student Reflection at Kimberly House
  • Thursday, July 13th 09:00 Meeting with Lesly at the Triangle Project - LGBT
    • 10:30 Meeting with Leonard at the Commission for Gender Equality – Gender equality
    • 18:00/6pm Speaker Nomfundo Walaza at Kimberly House – Human rights activist, gender, violence, torture
  • Friday, July 14th 09:00 Meeting with Nozuko at Nonceba Family Counselling Centre – Sexual assault/abuse
    • 10:00 Robben island Museum
  • Saturday, July 15th 08:30-16:30/6:30pm Visit the Cape Peninsula, Table Mountain National Park
  • Sunday, July 16th 09:00 Meeting with Fred at the Agency for Refugee Education, Skills Training and Advocacy (ARESTA)
    • 14:00/7pm Lecture
  • Monday, July 17th 08:30-16:30 Service Sites All Day
  • Tuesday, July 18th 09:00 Meeting with Sanja at Women’s Legal Centre
    • 14:00 Lecture
  • Wednesday, July 19th 10:00 Meeting with Sarah at Rape Crisis
    • 14:00 Lecture
  • Thursday, July 20th 08:30-16:30 Service Sites all day
  • Friday, July 21st 10:00 Lecture
    • 12:00 Iziko National Gallery
  • Saturday, July 22nd Morning: Group Departure


Students will participate in a comprehensive orientation prior to departure.

Courses Offered

Students will complete six credits in Women's and Gender Studies. Classes will be taught by Dr. Amelia Zurcher, associate professor of English, director of the University Honors Program and director of the Women's and Gender Studies Program.

The first course is a three-credit, online course titled Gender Studies in Transnational and African Contexts. Students will take this course online for two weeks in May and June while still in the United States. The course will continue for one week after the students return from South Africa.

The second course will be taken in South Africa. This three-credit course is titled Gender Studies in Cape Town and includes classroom lectures, service learning, and field trips throughout Cape Town.
Additionally, students will participate in service learning programs 8 - 10 hours a week, visit the Cape Town Rape Crisis Centre, Molo Songololo, and meet with guest speakers throughout the summer.


Students will live with fellow program participants in the Kimberely House in the Observatory neighborhood of Cape Town. Known locally as "Obs," the neighborhood is an intimate community with great energy an funky vibe. It is a popular community with students and lecturers because of its proximity to the University of Cape Town. Everything you need from restaurants to coffee shops to grocery stores are within blocks from the house.

Students share double rooms, a full kitchen and dining room, multiple bathrooms, a living room, computers and Internet access. Students are responsible for cooking their own meals and often share the responsibilities as a group.


Click below for visa and travel details specific to South Africa.

Visa and Travel - South Africa

This program is currently not accepting applications.