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Opportunities

Asian Studies majors and minors have the chance to extend their learning outside the classroom by participating in research, internships, study abroad and more.

Asian Studies Award

The Karen Gottschang Turner Asian Studies Award is presented to a fourth-year Asian Studies major or minor who has submitted the most outstanding piece of scholarly or artistic work as judged by a committee of Asian Studies faculty. The award also recognizes distinctive academic achievement in the Asian Studies curriculum and contribution to the Asian Studies Program.

Balinese Arts Program

Students perform as part of the Gamelan Gita Sari concert.
Students perform as part of the Gamelan Gita Sari concert.

The gamelan gong orchestras of Indonesia’s Bali and Java are world famous, as are Indonesian masked theatre traditions, textile arts, and village dance rituals. Holy Cross is one of the few

liberal arts colleges to offer a full range of courses in Balinese gamelan music and dance with our own gamelan ensemble, performance opportunities, and Indonesian instructors.

Learn more about the Balinese arts program on the theatre website.

Cocurricular Programming

usan Rogers, professor emerita of anthropology, discusses the "Woven Power: Ritual Textiles of Sarawak and West Kalimantan" exhibit in the Cantor Art Gallery. Rogers served as guest curator for the exhibit.
Susan Rogers, professor emerita of anthropology, discusses the "Woven Power: Ritual Textiles of Sarawak and West Kalimantan" exhibit in the Cantor Art Gallery. Rogers served as guest curator for the exhibit. 

Asian Studies sponsors a robust cocurricular program of intellectual, cultural and social events, including lectures by internationally renowned scholars, panel discussions on current events, Cantor Art Gallery exhibitions curated by faculty or organized by museums, music and dance performances (including Balinese Gamelan), workshops introducing Buddhist meditation, and an annual Chinese Lunar New Year celebration. 

Research

Asian Studies students actively engage in research and artistic production on and off campus. 

Students in recent years have received grants to conduct research in Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia and the United States. They have co-curated or assisted with gallery exhibitions on Southeast Asian textiles, analyzed the social and cultural dynamics of border trade between Cambodia and Vietnam, conducted research with Asian refugee communities in Worcester, worked as summer program resident assistants in Chinese, and have performed in music, dance, and theatre productions on campus and at festivals in Asia.

Student Stories

Mitchell Baker '22, a philosophy and political science major with a minor in Asian Studies, spent summer 2020 conducting research with May Sim, professor of philosophy and director of Asian Studies. He writes about his positive experience in his blog

Máire White ’20, a Chinese and Asian Studies major from Dayton, Ohio, was awarded a Fulbright Nehru Fellowship for the 2020-21 academic year to conduct research in India before she begins graduate school at Harvard University. 

Student Organizations

Students perform at the Developing and Educating South-Asian Ideologies (DESI) fashion show.
Students perform at the Developing and Educating South-Asian Ideologies (DESI) fashion show.

Students interested in Asian Studies are frequently involved in the following student groups.

  • Advocating Student Interest in Asia (ASIA), aims to promote an open atmosphere through activities that engage and immerse members in Asian culture.
  • Developing and Educating South-Asian Ideologies (DESI), enhances, reinforces, and strengthens the development of South-Asian culture and social awareness; serves as a support system to students of South-Asian descent. 
  • Holy Cross Anime Club, allows for an immersion into the realm of Japanese culture via media such as televised animation, recreational literature, and software both independently and commercially developed.
  • KPop Dance Crew, unites students who share similar interests in K-pop dance and educates other Holy Cross students about K-pop culture.
  • Multicultural Peer Educators (MPE), specially trained Holy Cross student volunteers who assist in programming, work with staff and residence assistants, and informally engage other students on topics of diversity.      
  • Pinoys of Worcester, promotes an awareness, understanding, and appreciation of Philippine culture. We also hope to support and raise awareness for the issues surrounding global poverty, education, and environmental degradation of the Philippines.

Study Abroad

From left, Melissa Gryan ’18, Martina Umunna ’18, Maggie MacMullin ’16, and Megan Demit ’16 in Malaysia.
From left, Melissa Gryan ’18, Martina Umunna ’18, Maggie MacMullin ’16, and Megan Demit ’16 in Malaysia.

Students are encouraged to study in Asia for a semester or an academic year. Study abroad at an approved program in Asia fulfills requirements towards the major or minor in Asian Studies. Holy Cross has affiliated programs in:

For additional information, visit the study abroad site.

Study Away

Students may apply to the Washington Semester Program or New York Semester Program