• Students at the Viveka School of Excellence
  • 2013 Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute Israel Student Laura Bakst, on the Israeli streets with a camel
  • Landscape of Mysore India
  • 2013 Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute India SVYM Students Teresa Danso-Danquah and Katie Klapheke with members of the Society for Elimination of Rural Poverty (SERP)
2013 Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute India SVYM Student Jeffrey Joseph with an elephant at the “elephant camp” during the SVYM Course Field Trip
2013 Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute Israel Student Laura Bakst a top the Masada in Israel

INDIA

LOCATIONS

MYSORE: Located in the Karnataka District of India, Mysore is the third-largest city in the state of Karnataka and is widely known as the cultural capital of Karnataka. Home to the Mysore Palace, it served as the capital city of the Mysore Princely Kingdom for almost six centuries (1399-1947). Map of Mysore

HYDERABAD: Located in the state of Andhra Pradesh, Hyderabad is the capital and largest city in the state and is located along the Musi River. Highly industrialized, Hyderabad is an epicenter for Indian manufacturing, research and finance. Map of Hyderabad


HOST ORGANIZATIONS

SVYMSwami Vivekananda Youth Movement

SVYM is non-political, non-religious, non-governmental organization working to improve lives of people living in rural and tribal areas of southern India. The organization has been working in the areas of health, education, community development and local capacity building for over thirty years and is considered as one among the top NGOs in India. SVYM Founder and Chairman, Dr. R. Balasubramaniam (also known as “Dr. Balu”) is a Rhodes Professor at Cornell University. In the India-program, disability-focused students will spend two weeks at SVYM’s Vivekananda Institute of Leadership Development and Vivekananda Institute of Indian Studies in Mysore where they learn about India’s arts, culture, and history and get an exposure to India’s disability and employment policies. Students will also have opportunities to learn yoga as well as the local language to help improve their communication abilities for their service learning components.

The Grass Roots Research And Advocacy Movement (GRAAM) is a public policy research division of SVYM, established to address public policy research from the perspective of local communities by engaging them in action research and building their capacities for advocacy and change. Established in partnership with the ILR School, Cornell Institute of Public Affairs and the Kennedy School for Government at Harvard University, GRAAM is partnering with EDI in implementation of several public policy projects examining the impact of employment policies on workforce engagement and overall social inclusion of persons with disabilities in India. (http://www.graam.org.in/)

SERPSociety for the Elimination of Rural Poverty

SERP is an independent registered society established by the ministry of Andhra Pradesh State Government charged with the responsibilities of implementing rural development initiatives. SERP has received support from World Bank over the last several years and is implementing one of India’s large-scale disability and development program aiming at mainstreaming people with disabilities and their families into workforce and organizing them into self-help groups for improved access to social service systems. SERP aims to empower people with disabilities through implementing community-based rehabilitation programs, vocational and technical training programs, and providing access to credit for supporting self-employment for people with disabilities.

Mr. Rajsekhar Budithi, the CEO of SERP, is a collaborator on EDI’s World Bank Funded project and has visited Ithaca as an Eisenhower Fellow in 2009.


WHY IS SVYM THE HOST ORGANIZATION

The ILR School has deep association with SVYM for the past five years. Dr. Balu, SVYM Founder and Chairman, has guest lectured at classes across Cornell Campus and has been appointed as Frank T. Rhodes Professor. While, SVYM is an NGO providing direct service to communities in rural and tribal areas of southern India, their vision of creating an equitable society free of deprivation and strife resonates with ILR’s mission (see video). EDI offers its GSL program in India in partnership with the ILR School and the Global Health Minor program in the College of Human Nutrition. So it is essentially a cohort of students, which is a lot of fun. Besides SVYM has hosted international students for over the past 15 – 20 years in form of interns and not service learning and operate similar programs for major universities in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K. (for more information see http://www.viis.in/).


2014 India Disability and Employment Program Dates

Information Sessions:

  • ILR Session: 10/10/13
  • Dr. Balu Session: 11/19/13, 4:30pm, 219 Ives Hall

Applications Due:

  • 11/20/13 by midnight

Applicant Interviews:

  • 11/22/13, 11/25/13, 11/26/13, 11/27/13

Those students chosen for the interview process will partake in a round-table interview with 2-3 members of the EDI Global Service Learning team.

Program Dates:

  • Estimated dates 5/29/14 through 7/11/14 (specific dates TBA)

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS

  • General ILR Cornell Abroad Application
  • Supplemental Application to India Program
  • Check “interested in disability program” on supplemental application
  • Resume
  • 2 References
  • Deadline: 11/20/13 by midnight

PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS/EXPERIENCES

  • Personal and/or professional experience with disability issues
  • Academic and/or strong interest in disability issues
  • Academic and/or strong interest in employment related issues
  • Experience traveling abroad and/or interacting with diverse populations and cultures
  • The minimum GPA is 2.8 at the time of departure

PRE-DEPARTURE COURSE REQUIREMENTS:

2-credit ILR SVYM Course – ILRIC xxxx (Name and course number TBD)

This course will cover important topics including preparation for life abroad, appreciating cultural diversity, health and safety, gender issues, politics and issues surrounding development work.

Wednesdays 2:55-4:30pm, during the spring semester, room location TBA

1-credit EDI Course – ILRIC 1300 – Global Service Learning and Disability

This course during the spring semester will prepare students for the Employment & Disability Institute’s (EDI) 2014 Global Service Learning Summer Programs in Israel and India. All students selected to participate in EDI’s programs are required to attend this course.

The class will be highly interactive, and students will benefit from guest lecturers from various EDI and Cornell faculty and subject matter experts.

Wednesdays, 10:10-11:25am, Ives 181


IN-COUNTRY COURSE REQUIREMENTS:

For the first two-weeks students will take courses at the Vivekananda Institute of Indian Studies (VIIS) in Mysore. These courses will help prepare students for their designated projects and provide much needed cultural orientation of Indian context.


TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS

All travel requirements are addressed in pre-departure courses


MORE INFORMATION

ILR International Programs

Consider attending the information session on 10/10/13 and 11/19/13 with Dr. Balu of SVYM.

ISRAEL

LOCATIONS

JERUSALEM: The capital and largest city in the modern state of Israel, Jerusalem is an ancient city that is a center of pilgrimage for Jews, Christians and Muslims. Old City in Jerusalem which was settled in the 4th millennium BCE became a World Heritage site in 1981. Map of Jerusalem


HOST ORGANIZATIONS

Israeli Commission (Equal Rights Commission for Persons with Disabilities):
http://old.justice.gov.il/MOJHeb/NetzivutNEW/

The Commission is dedicated to preventing discrimination and removing obstacles which impede the inclusion of people with disabilities in the workplace and society. The Commission works to promote equality and independence for youth and adults with disabilities.

The 1998 Equality Law established the Commission for Equal Rights for Persons with Disabilities with the responsibility to:

  • advance the basic principles of the law;
  • prevent discrimination on the basis of disability; and
  • promote the active participation of persons with disabilities in society.

The government, in consultation with the Minister of Justice and the Minister of Labor and Welfare appoints the Commissioner. An Advisory Committee, comprised by a majority of persons with different disabilities (or their representatives), aided by experts in the areas of activity of the Commission, including lawyers and public representatives, is elected for a consultative role.

The Commission is actively promoting the legislation and enforcement of accessibility regulations while also developing processes and resources to enable and require social change and commitment to creating a better society. This effort requires the active participation and partnership of many people and organizations from all segments of society including national and local government, as well as the private and non-profit sectors.

The Commission has three divisions: Community Inclusion, which develops manuals and conducts training for companies on how to improve employment for persons with disabilities; Legal Counsel, which prosecutes private employers in discrimination cases and also advises persons with disabilities; and Accessibility.

Elwyn
http://www.IsraelElwyn.org.il

Elwyn Israel was established in 1984 at the initiative of the Municipality of Jerusalem and Government of Israel. It is headquartered in Jerusalem but operates throughout the entire country. In the U.S., Elwyn was founded in 1852 and now has facilities in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, and California. In Israel, Elwyn is.

The mission of Elwyn US and Israel is the same: to enable youth and adults with disabilities to gain independence and live meaningful lives.

Elwyn US serves 12,000 children and adult per year; Elwyn Israel serves 3,000 which proportionately is a significantly larger constituent base.

Services and programs administered by Elwyn Israel include the following:

  • supported employment
  • occupational training and placement
  • social enterprises
  • transition programs for school students over 18 years of age
  • work activity and adult day centers
  • senior programs
  • community residential services
  • self-advocacy supported by professional facilitators

Elwyn is one of five organizations in Israel that was selected by the National Insurance Institute to operate job training and placement programs. It also provides services for youth with disabilities that includes transitional programs, workshops in schools for students in special education, and after-school programs for students with disabilities in integrated schools.

The Ministry of Economy
http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/exeres/B0B48981-357D-446F-AFAC-91A358E93C87.htm

The Ministry of Industry and Trade which is a division of the Ministry of Economy operates an assistance program for the development of human capital with the following objectives:

  • Increasing the availability of human capital to further industrial development
  • Establishing an enduring culture of development among factory employees as an integral part of their daily routine
  • Expanding the pool of human capital required for the knowledge-intensive and hi-tech industries by:
    • offering direct assistance to factories in development areas
    • supporting special projects for the development of human capital in cooperation with educational and other institutions

The Employment and Disability Institute Connection to the host organizations

The Commission promotes community inclusion and equal access for persons with disabilities in Israeli society. The Commission is also the lead agency charged with implementing the principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The Employment and Disability Institute (EDI) has partnered with the Commission as the two organizations share a common mission of advancing knowledge and promoting equality and independence of individuals with disabilities.

EDI has also partnered with Israel Elwyn, a non-profit organization that provides individuals with disabilities the tools needed to make decisions for them-self and gain more independence. This goal aligns with EDI mission to promote equality for individuals with disabilities in all pursuits of life from education to employment.

EDI’s partnership with the Israeli Ministry of Economy reflects its mission of working in coordination with government entities to support policies that advance the world of work for persons with disabilities.

2014 Israel Disability and Employment Focus Program Dates

Informational Session:

  • 11/5/13, EDI Glass Conference Room, 201 Dolgen Hall

Applications Due:

  • 11/21/13 by 5:00pm, late applications will not be accepted

Applicant Interviews:

  • 12/3/13, 12/4/13

Program Dates:

  • Estimated dates 6/2/14 through 7/11/14 (specific dates TBA)

APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS

  • EDI GSL Israel Application
  • Resume
  • 2 References
  • Deadline: 11/21/13 by 5:00pm in PDF format, late applications will not be accepted

PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS/EXPERIENCES

  • Personal and/or professional experience with disability issues
  • Academic and/or strong interest in disability issues
  • Academic and/or strong interest in employment related issues
  • Experience traveling abroad and/or interacting with diverse populations and cultures
  • The minimum GPA is 2.8 at the time of departure

PRE-DEPARTURE COURSE REQUIREMENTS

1-credit EDI Course – ILRIC 1300 – Global Service Learning and Disability

This course will prepare students for the Employment & Disability Institute’s (EDI) 2014 Global Service Learning Summer Programs in Israel and India. All students selected to participate in EDI’s programs are required to attend this course.

The class will be highly interactive, and students will benefit from guest lecturers from various EDI and Cornell faculty and subject matter experts.

Wednesdays, 10:10-11:25am, Ives 181


TRAVEL REQUIREMENTS

All travel requirements are addressed in pre-departure courses


2012 Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute India SVYM Students Dipabali Chowdhury and Felicia Salinas
  • How are EDI’s global-service learning experiences different from regular study abroad or exchange programs?

    Global-service learning has been defined by the Cornell Public Service Center as “an experiential education approach that links academic learning with meaningful community service activities, personal growth, and social awareness and responsibility.” This means that the main purpose of the experience is not to learn facts about another country or take classes in a foreign setting, as may be the case for general study abroad or exchange programs, but to engage in community service and problem-solving while in a global setting and building intercultural relationships. Through EDI’s GSL experiences, participating students will have opportunity to work with local organizations and citizens disability-related programs/projects. Delivering valuable service drawing upon academic learning and skills and contributing meaningfully to programs/projects in the host country remains to be one of the key elements of the program.

  • Are non-ILR students eligible to participate in GSL programs?

    Yes. EDI’s GSL programs are open to all Cornell undergraduate students regardless of their major, prior travel, or work experience. We seek students who are mature, self-motivated, have abilities to work in unfamiliar environment, and have a positive attitude and strong interpersonal skills. However, ILR students are given preference during the selection process and applicants need to be returning students in Fall 2014. An understanding and appreciation of the disability focus of the program is expected. Applicants are selected based on the quality of written applications, recommendations, and an interview.

  • Do I receive academic credit for my participation in a GSL program?

    You receive 1 credit for the mandatory pre-departure course you take during the spring semester before going abroad. No academic credit is given for the time you spend in-country.

  • How do I pay for my participation in an EDI GSL program?

    All selected applicants are fully funded by EDI. Students are awarded travel advances that cover all basic program-related travel, accommodation, insurance, and food costs. Additional personal expenses for sightseeing or souvenirs are not included.

  • Is the service-learning placement a paid internship?

    No. You will not receive pay or compensation for the work you do while in-country.

  • When can I go abroad?

    All current GSL programs have in-country stays during the summer. To qualify for a summer 2014 GSL experience, you must apply during the fall 2013 semester and, if selected, enroll in a 1-credit pre-departure course during spring 2014.

  • Do I have to speak the local language?

    No. Many people you will work with in both Israel and India will speak at least some English. In addition to this, the first few weeks of the India program include cultural learning courses, including basic language classes.

  • What are the accommodations like on site?

    Local accommodations will generally be arranged in hostels. Rooms are basic but clean, safe, and private. Working in partnership with the host organizations, EDI will arrange the accommodations for you.

  • Who will support me while I am in a service-learning placement abroad?

    Each program is led by a faculty member familiar with your foreign surroundings, who may be present for part of your stay and who is always available by phone, email, and Skype. In addition, you will have regular contact with your supervisor in the host organization and a local mentor familiar with Cornell students. Additionally, the EDI GSL Student Coordinator and Project Assistant help prepare you for your stay abroad during the spring semester before leaving, and also keeps in touch with you throughout the six weeks to gather weekly feedback from you and assist you with any issues that may arise.

    India Faculty Support Personnel: Arun Karpur, 212.340.2844, ak564@cornell.edu
    Israel Faculty Support Personnel: Judy Young, 917.597.9124, jy335@cornell.edu
    EDI GSL Student Coordinator: Erin Sember-Chase, 607.255.6690, ems65@cornell.edu
    EDI GSL Project Assistant: Kate MacDowell, 607.255.7727, kkm74@cornell.edu

  • What happens after I return to the United States?

    In addition to completing your final written paper or assignment, and completing a final survey, students will participate in a debriefing with EDI staff and faculty to provide additional feedback on their GSL experience. You will also be invited to share your experiences during the EDI information sessions in the Fall semester and participate as resource persons for the pre-departure course for the new group of students who get selected for the following year’s GSL program.

2013 SVYM Industrial and Labor Relations and Global Health Students

Funder: K. Lisa Yang

These disability-focused Global Service Learning opportunities are sponsored by the Employment and Disability Institute at the ILR School, through a generous gift from Cornell University ILR School alumna K. Lisa Yang, in collaboration with the ILR School International Programs Office.

What is Global Service Learning?

Are you interested in going abroad, but looking to do more than learn facts about another country, take classes in a foreign setting, or participate in a general study abroad program? Would you like to enhance your ability to solve problems in a global setting while applying your academic knowledge to the real world and building intercultural relationships?

Global service-learning (GSL) enables you to put classroom learning to work in the field, help local citizens meet a vital need through a community-driven project, and learn from others while contributing to their community and/or work-related efforts. This program helps you understand how you can make a difference in the world.

In EDI’s service-learning programs, students connect academic learning, reflection, personal growth, and civic responsibility to meaningful community service experiences related to disabilities and the workplace. Current EDI GSL opportunities are available in Israel and India, and run for approximately six weeks each summer.

Academics and Service

EDI’s GSL programs aims to bring academic learning in class rooms and community service together to offer experiential learning in an international setting. As such, participating students will generally:

  • Enroll in and attend a 1 credit pre-departure course in the prior spring semester
  • Complete assigned readings and written reflections
  • Participate in reflection sessions
  • Engage in service work while in-country
  • Respond to feedback surveys while in-country
  • Document their service/community engagement experience
  • Write a final reflection paper upon re-entry in the U.S.
2013 Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute Israel Students Laura Bakst and Lawrence Goun in Haifa, Israel

For more information, please contact:

Kate MacDowell
kkm74@cornell.edu
607.255.7727

2012 Cornell University Employment and Disability Institute India SVYM Students Dipabali Chowdhury, Felicia Salinas, Employment and Disability Institute Director Susanne Bruyère, and Employment and Disability Institute India Faculty Lead Arun Karpur at Hyderabad Palace.

Applications for the 2015 program will be available Fall 2014. Thank you for your interest.