In January, 2012, Colgate University sent 27 faculty from across the discipines to India with funding from the Melon Foundation. This was an ambitious trip led by two India Scholars, Dr. Eliza Kent from the Religion Department, and Dr. Padma Kaimal from the Art & Art History Department. The objective of the trip was to strengthen the CORE Curriculum and broaden the depth of experience and knowledge of the faculty. The trip was exhilarating academically (http://colgate-india-core.blogspot.com/) fueled by discussions among humanists-social scientists-natural scientists. We (re-) discovered that perspectives across the disciples are different and led to unexpected and fruitful collaborations along with greater depth to our teaching
On that trip, a plan was hatched -- to offer students different perspectives of similar material. We decided to link classes. Dr. Kaimal's CORE India and Dr. Cooper's CORE 151, Legacies of the Ancient World. These classes would teach the same students, share texts and discuss similar issues related to India at particular points across the semester. A similar model was shared in Dr. Reinbold's CORE 152, Modernity, and Dr. Cardelús' Freshman Seminar: Global Change & YOU! To top it off, we decided to share some events across both groups, most notably a trip to Colgate Camp on Saranac Lake. This trip focused on sustainability at Colgate and we were lucky to have talks by John Pumilio, Director of Sustainability at Coglate, and discussions of land use and tenure in India led by Dr. Kent -- not to mention many breakout sessions within classes. We did this in the backdrop of the Adirondack Mountains! We stayed at Colgate Camp which is a lovely former camp with cabins, a large eating area and game room in the heart of the Adirondack Mountains on Saranac lake. We were assisted by members of the Outdoor Education Program at Colgate!