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A $15,000 question

What would you do with $15,000 to travel the world and learn?

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That question beckons students at Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies, whose Adventure Learning Grants gives $15,000 to each of three students annually for an independent learning project abroad.

This year’s grant recipients will venture to such far-flung places as the Andes to study weaving and fiber-arts, Central America to learn about feminism and theatre, and the Balkans to explore the economics and social aspects of fishing.

Competition for the grants is, understandably, intense.

Applicants are judged on their proposal’s creativity and ingenuity, the extent that the culture they will experience is different from their own, and the student’s commitment to sharing their experience with the WWU community.

The program, funded by an anonymous donor, has inspired many students to pursue projects they had previously never thought possible, says Kathryn Anderson, a Fairhaven professor in charge of the application process.

“It’s based on the faith that if you give bright, creative students this kind of opportunity,” Anderson says, “then great things will happen.”