AASD Summer Abroad - South Africa Program

AASP468Z & AASP498Y / SOCY498Y & SOCY498J: Special Topics in Africa and the Americas: Understanding Social Inequalities in Post-Apartheid South Africa.

South African Flag and Text

Following on the legacy of luminaries such as W.E.B. DuBois, Malcolm X, Eslanda Robeson and Martin Luther King Jr., this program builds on AASD’s commitment to understanding race and social inequality in international and, in particular, Black diasporic contexts. This exciting study abroad opportunity will expose students to the many dimensions of social inequality and the consequences for well-being in post-apartheid South Africa. While racial inequality is, by far, the most visible and most documented form of social stratification in South Africa, other factors - gender, class, sexuality, ethnicity, language, religion, geographical location – all contribute to well-being for all South Africans. Whatever the issue of interest - early childbearing or HIV infection or achievement gaps in education or crime – a grounding in the multiple dimensions of social inequality is critical to understanding the what, why, who and how in these social issues.


Students are encouraged to take advantage of several unique opportunities available to earn credits while living and studying abroad. The Programs Coordinator and the campus Study Abroad office have compiled a comprehensive listing of accredited programs in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Americas. Click here for a list of study abroad programs

Schedule an appointment with the Education Abroad office here to discuss study program details, requirements, application procedures, deadlines, and costs. Any queries about declaring a major, certificate and minor in African American Studies, please contact the Academic Advisor, Marshal Washington, lahsram9 [at] umd.edu


The AASD launched its first Study Abroad program to South Africa in summer 2016. Led by Dr. Sangeetha Madhavan and Mr. Vusi Dlamini, 9 students from various departments at UMD engaged in an intensive 4-week experience examining social inequality in a post-apartheid context. Students spent time in both an urban context (Johannesburg) and rural communities in Bushbuckridge, close to the Mozambican border. 

AASD Summer South Africa_Group Photo_2018 Cohort
AASD Summer South Africa: 2018 Cohort
Top of the Blyde Canyon_2016
AASD Summer South Africa: 2016 Cohort

Gurleen Kaur (Senior, 2016 Cohort): "...there was no way I could have been prepared for my experience this summer. I not only learned how similar a country thousands of miles away is to the US, the same culture, the same social problems, but I learned so much about myself. Things only an experience as unique as this one could have given me and I am truly grateful for the opportunity to share this experience with eight other amazing women".



  • College Park: 5/26 – 5/29
  • South Africa: 7/24 – 8/14


  • University of Maryland, College Park 
  • Johannesburg and Bushbuckridge, South Africa 

FUNDING: See Education Abroad for a list of funding opportunities, incl. the Gilman Scholarship,  Mather Family International Travel ScholarshipFreshman Programs Scholarship, as well as ARHU & BSOS Scholarships

AASD majors and certificate students are eligible for departmental support ($1000 & $750, respectively). Contact the Director of Administrative Services, Sharon Hodgson (shodgson [at] umd.edu) for application procedures and any information.

Other funding opportunities:

ELIGIBILITYJuniors/Seniors (any major). Sophomore and Graduate students may be considered. Open to non-UMD students



APPLICATION DEADLINE: March 1, 2020. Go to: globalmaryland.umd.edu/

PROGRAM INFO: Vusi Dlamini, Program Director, vdlamini [at] umd.edu and Dr. Sangeetha Madhavan, smadhava [at] umd.edu



Study abroad is your opportunity to challenge yourself and broaden your academic and professional experiences. In addition to strengthening any resume in today's globalizing workforce, many study abroad programs are designed to advance students of specific disciplines through innovative approaches to learning such as community engagement, hands on research, and international collaboration. Whether you are an emerging entrepreneur, scientist, educator, or academic, study abroad will provide you with the skills and experience you need to reach your goals. Visit the Education Abroad page to learn about the many opportunities available to students.

Consider attending one of the Study Abroad 101 sessions! They cover the basics about academics, finances, locations, and how to plan to go abroad! Only three (03) more sessions remain, until December 3rd.

The best time to study abroad is different for each student. It will depend on your academic major and minor, study abroad goals, and other factors in your life. The sooner you meet with your EA advisor and academic advisor, the easier it will be to incorporate study abroad into your 4-year plan. Students in African American Studies must contact the Academic Advisor, Marshal Washington, lahsram9 [at] umd.edu. The AASD's South Africa program is currently only offered in the summer. Check out 'Getting Started' for more information.

Ideally, you should start exploring study abroad programs at least one year prior to when you plan to study. Please refer to the application deadline for the program and term you are interested in. The sooner you start to plan your study abroad experience, the more flexibility in timing, program type, and course selection you will have.

As a summer program, the deadline for the AASD's South Africa program is March 1st of that year.

It depends. Visa requirements to South Africa are dictated by your country of citizenship and usually on how long you will be staying in country as well as the purpose of travel. Students are responsible for identifying if a visa is required for participation in study abroad and going through the proper application process if needed. You should not begin the visa process until you are accepted to a study abroad program but EA advises you to do research as part of the application process.

  • U.S. State Department information for study abroad students: Includes country specific info from the State Department, including guidelines on entry/visa requirements for U.S. Citizens
  • Embassy/Consulate website for your study abroad host country to determine if a visa is necessary and what the process entails. Reference the list of embassies in the U.S. maintained by the U.S. Department of State for more information. You should search for the "Consulate" or "Consular Services" section of the website for information on visas and visa requirements.
  • Travisa - UMD's affiliate visa processing agency offers visa processing services for UMD students as a discounted rate.
  • EA's Visa Guidelines Page - Visa guidelines for countries where UMD has sponsored semester-long programs.

Study abroad programs vary in cost depending on program type and length. Did you know that your cost of attendance for a semester abroad could be less than in College Park? Explore the "Money Matters" section of the Education Abroad website to find more information about the cost of study abroad and how financial aid and scholarships work. Your EA advisor can also help you find affordable program options that match your academic goals and interests.

AASD majors and certificate students are eligible for departmental support ($1000 & $750, respectively). Contact the Director of Administrative Services, Sharon Hodgson (shodgson [at] umd.edu) for application procedures and any information.


Other funding opportunities include:

Yes. Tuition remission benefits can apply to Maryland Semester programs, Maryland Short-term programs, Exchanges and Affiliate Programs. Note that tuition remission benefits generally cover a per-credit rate and may not cover study abroad program fees in full. You should check with the benefits coordinator in the employee’s department or unit to confirm the value of tuition remission. Read more about tuition remission on the Financial Aid page.

Safety abroad is our top priority. Our health and safety policies are designed using a comprehensive approach to student safety by vetting programs, preparing students about health and safety issues abroad at pre-departure orientations, and enrolling all study abroad students in our risk management program. The risk management program includes comprehensive international insurance, pre-departure student conduct and health review, and emergency response services when necessary. All EA advisors and UMD faculty and staff participate in regular trainings related to health and safety abroad topics. Please review the "Health and Safety" section of our website for more information.

You are limited to one study abroad application per term. As long as you have done sufficient research on your study abroad options, you should be able to apply to one program that will meet your goals. However, should you need to open a second application for special circumstances, your Education Abroad advisor can assist you. Please contact your EA advisor to discuss the possibility of opening a second study abroad program application.

Education Abroad at University of Maryland welcomes degree-seeking and non-degree seeking applicants from other institutions in the U.S. and other countries on select Maryland semester and Maryland short-term programs. You should check with your home institution's study abroad office or your academic advisor to understand the policies regarding transfer credit from a UMD study abroad program. You will also need to check with your home institution's study abroad or financial aid office to verify how your financial aid will apply to a UMD study abroad program. In most cases, students are able to use the majority of their financial aid on UMD programs. Non-UMD students will receive a UMD transcript for coursework on study abroad programs taught by UMD faculty or for courses offered at partner institutions that have been evaluated and given a UMD course number.  For all other courses on programs at partner institutions, you will receive a transcript from that host institution. 

Please refer to the eligibility information posted on the program brochure of each program you are interested in to determine whether you are permitted to apply and review the Frequently Asked Questions for Non-UMD Students for more details. 

Education Abroad is responsible for making arrangements for you well in advance of your departure for your study abroad program. Many of our partners are not able to make such arrangements until they have complete details for each program participant. Students who do not submit information on time delay EA's ability to work with partners and make arrangements to ensure a safe and productive study abroad program, which can often incur additional expenses.

Please review our Post-decision Materials Late Fee Policy section of the Financial Policies page for more information.

You will find more information here!