Ethnographic Field School
Since its first pilot program in 2009, as of March 2023 Dar Si Hmad has hosted over 400 participants, a total of 57 groups, with the majority coming from American universities, with some high-school programs.
In addition to academic lectures and discussions, our programs prioritize experiential learning, cross-cultural exchange, and community engagement. Students gain an immersive, critical perspective from the on-the-ground realities of southern Morocco, including the chance to conduct individual research projects, be mentored by our affiliated teachers, participate in locally-driven development initiatives, and engage with a range of experts and community members.
Our programs are based out of Agadir, and we conduct training in Sidi Ifni, Taroudant, Tiznit, Essaouira and other smaller towns of the southwest as well as the rural regions of the Anti-Atlas mountains where we have our famed fog-collection project and didactic, agroecology farm. Each program offers participants ways to understand, explore and relate to a rich and diverse region of Morocco.
Our focus at Fondation Dar Si Hmad is environmental education, and programs are tailored to the specific interests and requirements of each group.
Themes of the Program
Environment, Ecology, and Sustainable Development
Globalization and Local Economies
Contemporary Expressions of Culture
Embodiments of Tradition and Modernity
Sociohistorical Transformations and Narratives of Identity
Social and Religious Histories of the Souss Region
- Do you crave travel experiences that support local communities and push you beyond surface-level tourism and orientalism?
- Do you want to make a positive impact and gain valuable work experience by interning abroad?
- Do you want to learn Arabic or Amazigh in a dynamic and positive environment that takes you outside the classroom?
Then come and engage in a full Dar Si Hmad experience.
Requirements: Two class-sessions, Orientation and Cultural Sensitivity and The Ethics of Field-work, are mandatory for all students upon arrival. Students are also required to abide by the rules and regulations of Dar Si Hmad
Your safety and health is our priority. We provide all participants with a detailed cultural and safety orientation, important contacts, and specific emergency response plans. Check our ressources!!
Each one of our themes covers some aspect in the life of Southwest Morocco, and more particularly Aït Baâmrane, and we then make the connection to more global issues and theoretical discussions. Classes are an eclectic mix of experiential and immersive learning, conferences, debates, and lectures, all of which allow for critical and intense engagement with another culture. Our courses opt for a multidisciplinary approach and make human and cultural exchange their ultimate goals, allying the rational to the passionate and are much aware of the different systems of understanding and apprehending our world.
Our classes and activities are the customizable building blocks of our programs: site visits (farms, NGOs, cooperatives), museums and urban history tours, language classes (Modern Standard Arabic, Moroccan Arabic Darija, or Tashelhit), conferences, academic lectures and discussions, and exchanges with local students, community members, cooperative workers, activists, State representatives, business leaders, and other lay women and men. There are reading requirements for classes as well as some form of a final project and/or presentation.