Middle East Immersion students have the opportunity to earn academic credit and fulfill intercultural practicum requirements. Please find a description of our MEI Lebanon courses below:
Middle East Consultation Course (4 credits)
Hosted annually by IMES, the purpose of the Middle East Consultation (MEC) is “to equip participants to respond in prophetic and Christ-like ways to the many challenges facing Christians and Muslims in and beyond the Middle East.” The consultation draws Muslim and Christian clerics, students, and scholars who gather for the purpose of learning, discussion, and dialogue. All MEI students are required to participate in this consultation which counts as 4 academic credits. For additional information about IMES’s Middle East Consultation, please click here.
Upon completion of the Middle East Consultation, the remainder of time in Lebanon is split between Arabic classes and an intercultural immersion experience.
This course consists of intensive Arabic language learning through IMES’ Academy of Languages and Practical Skills (ALPS). The ALPS method, carefully developed by linguistic specialists, is designed to introduce students to Arabic culture and daily life through the study of language. ALPS seeks “to use learning of Arabic as a means to bridge the linguistic and cultural divide between people, increasing understanding and cooperation between individuals and institutions in the Middle East and in the World.”
Cross-Cultural Work in Context (4 credits)
As part of this course, MEI students acquire hands-on, intercultural experience serving at a local ministry placement in Lebanon. With an array of organizations and ministries to work with, this placement may focus on assisting refugee populations, community development, children-at-risk, migration, church-based ministry, or more. Students and faculty come together regularly to reflect critically and theologically upon their ministry and service in light of the religions, cultures, history and politics of the Middle East.
MENA Studies 501 is an intensive master’s level course focusing on topics related to Middle Eastern and North African religion/s, including the multifaceted dimensions of both MENA Islam and Christianity, as well as culture, history, politics and economics, current trends, and intercultural and interfaith interactions. This course serves as an essential primer for those interested in immersing themselves or engaging in intercultural work in the MENA context. MENA Studies 501 was developed as an alternative to the MEC course for those students not participating in the summer months.