Degree Name

MA in International Education

First Advisor

Linda Gobbo


Dream Big is a strategically designed intercultural program for the oldest members of the Bandhavi program, a program for at-risk girls that is an initiative of Visthar, an institute for development and peace studies in Bangalore, India. In alignment with Visthar’s mission, Dream Big will promote transformative and inclusive education and will do so in collaboration with civil society and faith-based organizations and social movements (2010).

The program will offer 6 members of Bandhavi’s first-year Pre-University College students an 8-week intercultural program in the United States. As a part of this program, the participants will be equipped with tools for empowerment and change. This will occur through intensive English training and immersion, interactions that will increase intercultural competency, dialogues with same-aged American youth, learning with U.S. based community organizations, and sharing their story and culture with the host community. Throughout the program, the participants will relate their learning to their experiences in India and reflect on how this new experience can help them become effective members of their own society.

Considering the socioeconomic backgrounds of the participants as well as their dreams, intelligence, and potential, Dream Big has been thoughtfully designed to inspire its participants to break society’s expectations and follow their dreams. Through this program, Dream Big joins Visthar in providing transformative opportunities for the Bandhavi girls to “become women who believe in the power they have within them to change their situations and build lives of freedom and dignity” (Visthar, 2010).


Civic and Community Engagement | Family, Life Course, and Society | Gender and Sexuality | Inequality and Stratification | International and Comparative Education | Place and Environment | Service Learning | Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education