In 1992, the Washington State University program World Civilizations sent a group of teaching faculty to India led by history professor Fritz Blackwell. This was the second tour sponsored by World Civ to be funded partly by an NEH grant secured under the leadership of director Richard Law. The idea was to provide teachers of our world civilizations courses first-hand experience with the countries they would be teaching about. This program is a rarity, in that institutional resources were used to promote study abroad that was not aimed at research or international programs, but an enhancing undergraduate teaching.
Because my way had been paid on an earlier trip to China, I didn't qualify for a subsidy this time, but it seemed like the chance of a lifetime, so we dug up the money to take our whole family: my wife, Paula Elliot, and my daughter, Megan. Altogether seven people paid their own way to join the trip. It was an amazing experience which I continue to draw on right down to the present day. I have remained fascinated by India and Indian culture, and hope some day to return.
Above are pictured the participants. Front row: (l-r): Ernesto Ricks, Susan Wyche-Smith, Terry Cook, Deborah Haines, Mary Gallwey, Mary Watrous, Megan Brians, Paula Elliot. Back row: tour guide, Fritz Blackwell, Michael Myers, Paul Smith, David Thorndike, Roger Shlesinger, Maria Montes de Oca Ricks, Paul Brians, Margaret Andrews. Not in picture: Marina Tolmacheva.
All photos copyright Paul Brians.