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Nov 15 - Dec 17 online 
Dec 21- Jan 7 in Jordan


Peace and Conflict in Jordan:
Peace-building and Conflict Resolution through a Humanitarian Lens

A Portland Community College Faculty Led Study Abroad Program-  offering 4 transferable general ed credits 

Peace and Conflict in Jordan: 
Peace-building and Conflict Resolution through a Humanitarian Lens

  • Become familiar with the skills and practices needed to engage with issues of peace and conflict, and reconciliation projects in the world. 

  • Gain a first-hand understanding of how local government, international support, refugee initiative, and Islamic culture contribute to Jordan as a welcoming and relatively peaceful society while honoring its ethnic and religious diversity. 

PCC Ed abroad : 971-722-7117 or 971-722-5691

Aimee Samara Krouskop (Instructor): 360 319 8339

Instructor Introduction

The Institute for Economics and Peace ranks Jordan fifth in level of peacefulness among countries in the Middle East and North Africa - the world's least peaceful region. Jordan also receives the second-highest number of refugees per capita in the world...


How does Jordan manage to stay relatively conflict free - while investing this commitment to refugees and surrounded by the unrest in Iraq, Syria, Israel, and the Palestine occupied territories? 

Peace and Conflict in Jordan offers four weeks of interactive online learning and seventeen days in Jordan. Online, we’ll learn how our idea systems, as well as our social and political realities play a role in the crises and conflicts of our day. We'll dive into methodologies, tools, and strategies for fostering intergroup understanding across polarizing divides. We'll examine how policy, economic investment, and international intervention can support or deter peace and conflict resolution in the world. 

Then in Jordan we'll explore the country as a peace and conflict laboratory. We'll focus on unique efforts underway that are meeting the humanitarian and resilience needs of Syrian refugees and other local communities; an example of how partnership among international humanitarian bodies, government, human rights systems, and civil society can support peace-keeping.

Through direct observation, we'll learn how providing income and security for historically marginalized communities and a culture infused with Islamic tenets such as trustworthiness, humility, virtuous deeds, and hospitality contribute to a relatively peaceful society in this ethnically and religiously diverse country.

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  • Basic Arabic sessions

  • Home base in Amman, a crossing point and birthplace of several ancient civilizations, and now a tolerant refuge for displaced Palestinian, Iraqi, and Syrian neighbors

  • Amman accommodations provided by The American Center of Research

  • Dinner with Amman family on Christmas eve

  • Journey the country for field observations of community-led tourism projects. Special focus on initiatives that engage communities in the preservation, management, and promotion of cultural heritage resources. 

  • Two-day tour of  Petra (UNESCO World Heritage) archeological site with rock-cut architecture established in the fourth century B.C. by the Nabateans, an Arab Bedouin tribe indigenous to the region.

  • Overnight stay in Wadi Rum, a breathtaking protected desert wilderness and home to the Zalabia Bedouin who make eco-adventure tourism a main source of their income.

  • At the Byzantine ruins of Umm el Jimal share a traditional Jordanian lunch prepared by Bedouin families and the project Hand by Hand Heritage.

  • Baptismal Site: An archaeological World Heritage site located on the east bank of the Jordan River. Considered to be the location of the baptism of Jesus.

  • The Dead Sea, the lowest point on earth; a salt lake bordered by Jordan, Israel and the West Bank. 

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Visits and Guest Lectures with:
  • Representatives of United Nations offices

  • Students at the University of Jordan and with members of the Palestine Student Movement

  • EcoPeace: bringing together Jordanian, Palestinian, and Israeli environmentalists to protect a shared environmental heritage. 

  • Collateral Repair Project: focusing on community-building, education, trauma relief, and emergency aid to refugees in Jordan who have fled violence in their home countries.

  • Generations for Peace: dedicated to sustainable conflict transformation by promoting youth leadership, community empowerment, active tolerance, and responsible citizens


Jordan Lead: Ashraf Alqudah, Academic Director of the School for International Training (SIT) Study Abroad

Ashraf Alqudah will implement the Jordan program in collaboration with PCC Instructor, Aimee Samara Krouskop.

He'll provide key local expertise, including from his area of research interest: psychopathology, psychological treatments and psychotherapies, and psycho-social support for refugees and displaced persons. Ashraf is affiliated with the department of psychology at the University of Jordan in Amman and has worked on projects conducted by a number of health organizations that included Doctors of the World Organization, the War Trauma Foundation, and the Antares Foundation. 

Ashraf is a member of the Higher Council of the Humanitarian Support Network of Jordan and the Jordanian Mental Health Licensing Committee. He is currently finishing a research project on stress and burnout sources among NGO workers working with refugees.


Ashraf holds a Ph.D. in clinical and medical psychology from the College of Public Health and Health Professions, University of Florida, and an MA in psychology from the University of Jordan. 

Faculty: Aimee Samara Krouskop, Portland Community College 

Aimee will lead the pre-departure online segment of this course. Then, in Jordan she'll collaborate with SIT Director Ashraf Alqudah by facilitating meaningful connections between participants and our Jordan hosts and speakers, incorporating insights from her 15 years contributing to human rights and humanitarian endeavors.

Aimee has evaluated international Fair Trade relationships in Central and South America; supported indigenous and agrarian civil war survivors; designed cross-agency collaboration for emergency relief with the United Nations; and served as a human rights protector in Colombia, providing physical protection to civilians in remote conflict zones and political protection via international diplomacy routes.

Aimee also brings her experience producing and leading impactful international education; launching supporter-tours in Guatemala for the first Fair Trade Organization in the US, developing a study abroad program to Bolivia that explores our social and environmental challenges through the lens of indigenous Andean communities, and leading international delegations throughout Colombia that offered a close-in account of the social dynamics of the regional armed conflict. 

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