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  • Locations: Pondicherry, India
  • Program Terms: UC Summer Abroad
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Program Sponsor: UC-Davis Summer Abroad 
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year UCM Deadline Campus Decision Date Start Date End Date
UC Summer Abroad 2020 02/28/2020 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Click here for a definition of this term Minimum GPA: 2 Click here for a definition of this term Class standing: 1-Freshman, 2-Sophomore, 3-Junior, 4-Senior, 5-Graduate student, 6-Other
Language of instruction: English Housing options: Hostel / hotel
Click here for a definition of this term Areas of study: English
Program Description:

Program Overview

This program examines the rich textual and visual cultures of India with a specific focus on South India. Students will stay in the French colonial sea-side city of Pondicherry, the home of a cosmopolitan and international population. As India can be overwhelming for the first time visitor, Pondicherry presents a happy medium, a fact reflected in the city's urban planning. The French Quarter is European in architecture and urban design, while the Tamil quarter, like most Indian cities, is busy, crowded and noisy. Activities include several field trips to some of the most important and earliest archaeological sites in India. Many of these monuments are UNESCO world heritage sites.  Students will be accompanied on field trips by world-renowned South Indian classical musician Sikkil Gurucharan. Please visit the program page for more information.


Past participant feedback:

- "I left a bit of my heart in Pondicherry."

- "India is very challenging to the body, mind, and spirit, and I feel like I learned a lot. I couldn't imagine doing this trip without a program."

- "[Professor Venkatesan] was engaging and excited about what she taught us, so in turn, it had the same effect on us about learning."

- "This was the most raw, personal, and intriguing experience. My experience was so eye opening! I am changed forever."

- "[Professor Venkatesan] takes care of each need, and is very open and has a big heart. Good storyteller!"

- "I loved the program and feel I've grown tremendously from it."

- "[Professor Venkatesan] was open to discussions (both privately and in the classroom) and words cannot express how helpful she was in this foreign place. She engaged us in intellectual conversations and we learned so much from her! She is extremely organized and knows a lot about the subject."

- "[Professor Venkatesan] is the most incredible person. Invaluable to the trip. More than prepared, calm, organized, and patient. Attentive, motherly, and a true friend. Cautious and funny and unforgettable. Amazing."

- "India summer abroad has exceeded my hopes and dreams. I will forever remember my friends and professors and experiences on this trip. It's been so much fun, and truly beautiful."


Instructor: Archana Venkatesan

Taught in English

Max Enrollment: 24

Program Coordinator: Megan Hartrick


Comparative Literature 180S - Selected Topics in Comparative Literature (4 units): Study of selected topics appropriate to student and faculty interests and areas of specialization of the instructor. May be repeated one time for credit when topic differs.

Comparative Literature198 - Directed Group Study (4 units): P/NP Grading only.


Middle East/South Asia Studies 198 - Directed Group Study (4 units): Prerequisite - MSA 100. P/NP Grading only.


Religious Studies 198 - Directed Group Study (4 units): Prerequisite - Upper division standing and consent of instructor. P/NP Grading only.

Find a full course description in the UC Davis General Catalog. For more information on prerequisites for UC Davis Summer Abroad courses, visit the Academics section of the Summer Abroad website.