The SIT Morocco: Arabic Language and Community Service program is an intensive field-based Arabic language immersion program offered during the summer. While instruction is focused primarily on Modern Standard Arabic (fus'ha), students also learn Moroccan Arabic (darija) through classroom instruction during orientation and time with host families.
The program is designed to accommodate a range of levels of Arabic language learners. Instruction is provided at three different levels: beginner, intermediate, and advanced. The program also includes a thematic seminar and Arabic lecture series in which students explore topics such as Moroccan family life, Islam, cultural heritage, politics and economy, and identity.
Drawing on the resources of Rabat
The program is based in the vibrant city of Rabat, Morocco's capital located on the Atlantic coast. Classes are held at the Center for Cross Cultural Learning in the city's centuries-old medina. The Center hosts educational programs and organizes cultural events, such as artistic shows and performances.
Most of the program's lecturers come from Mohammed V University, Morocco's oldest modern university and one of the leading academic institutions in Africa and the Arab world. Students participate in group discussions with Mohammed V University students as a way of promoting cross-cultural exchange and debate.
Students also engage with artists, architects, activists, and leaders of nongovernmental associations and participate in hands-on activities such as cooking, dancing, calligraphy, and Moroccan ceremonies.
Discovering the vibrancy of summer
Throughout the summer months, a multitude of festivals and ceremonies are held in Morocco, and in the coming years (2010 – 2014), summer will also coincide with Ramadan preparations. Additionally, summer is the time when family members living abroad return home to Morocco, further contributing to the excitement of the summer period.