Dr. Bob Spires, Assistant Professor of Education, and Dr. Monti Datta, Associate Professor of Political Science, collaborated in leading a short-term EnCompass study abroad experience to Thailand and Cambodia this past summer to study NGOs and Social Healing.

EnCompass is UR's groundbreaking new program aimed at breaking down the barriers to study abroad and providing students “at risk” of graduating without an international experience the opprtunity to begin navigating the world. Leveraging the international expertise of select faculty on campus, EnCompass programs are instructor-led, short-term programs that act as an accessible first study abroad experience for these populations.

The group, consisting of undergraduate students and and SPCS education student, Kelly Ortiz, travelled to Thailand and Cambodia to complement their individual research projects, which ranged in topics from education to human trafficking to religion.

Throughout the trip, the group learned about the way NGOs provide education opportunities and support to local children and work to prevent human trafficking in the region. 

Ortiz prepares to complete her journey at SPCS with her last semester and begin her journey as a student teacher. Read her research on Education in Southeast Asia, or read Ortiz’s more personal account of the three-week trip on a shared blog to which the travelers contributed. 

Read Spires’ final comments in this blog post, where he reflects on places the group visited and people they met on the trip. Besides discussing the humanitarian efforts the group learned about and contributed to, the blog also features funny stories and photos of breath-taking monuments like the Royal Palace in Bangkok

Related Campus Units

Education Department

Associate Professor of Political Science
Human Trafficking and Modern Day Slavery
Anti-Americanism and perceptions of the United States
The U.S.-European Transatlantic Gap
U.S. policy towards North Korea
Assistant Professor, Education
Member, SPCS Speakers Bureau
Human Trafficking & NGO Efforts to Address Trafficking
Disadvantaged Youth in Asia & Africa
Socio-psychological Processes Impacting Educators