Center for Contemporary Arab Studies - Center for Contemporary Arab Studies | Georgetown University

Center for Contemporary Arab Studies

The Center for Contemporary Arab Studies (CCAS) at Georgetown University directs the nation’s only Master of Arts in Arab Studies (MAAS) program. Our rigorous Arabic language training and multidisciplinary approach draw on the expertise of an academically diverse faculty. CCAS also hosts a rich calendar of public events, a Department of Education Title VI-supported outreach program for K-14 educators, and a growing multimedia and publications program.

CCAS News:

DC Students Travel to Egypt

DC Students Travel to Egypt

On April 20, 2006, a group of students from DC Public Schools found themselves standing before the massive industrial printing presses of Al Ahram Newspaper Company in Cairo, Egypt. The students were told that in that room, some hundreds of thousands of Arabic and English script newspapers were printed and eventually distributed to millions of readers in Egypt and the greater Middle East. Six months prior, these students were not thinking about Arab newspapers, and they certainly weren’t entertaining the idea of spending two weeks in April traveling the cities of Cairo, Alexandria, and Luxor in Egypt. But in the Office of International Programs (OIP) within the central offices of DC Public Schools, plans were coming together, in cooperation with AMIDEAST, to run such a trip—thanks in great part to a grant from the Mosaic Foundation. In past years, OIP, as part of its Youth Ambassadors Program, has run a number of student trips to different regions throughout the world. With the Spring 2006 Student Travel Program to Egypt, students were selected from across the city, based on academic record, community involvement, and their capacity to serve as articulate spokespersons for the school, the school system, the community, and the United States. In the end, ten sophomore and junior students were chosen, representing nine high schools from each region of DC Public Schools. The travel ...
CCAS Annual Symposium: The Politics of Education in the Arab World: Past Legacies, Current Challenges

CCAS Annual Symposium: The Politics of Education in the Arab World: Past Legacies, Current Challenges

On March 23-24, 2006, some twenty scholars and specialized professionals were invited to Georgetown University to participate in the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies’ (CCAS) 2006 Annual Symposium on education in the Arab world. The Symposium was held in the Copley Formal Lounge and attracted a sizeable audience. The theme for the conference was inspired by recent United Nations Reports on Human Development that attributed the relative slow economic development of the Arab world to its uneven educational standards. As CCAS Director Michael C. Hudson remarked in his opening statement, education has become a “hot topic” in the Arab world and standards of education are increasingly recognized as critical to political, social, and economic renewal in the region. Five panels provided a detailed overview of the evolution of Arab/Muslim education and the challenges that it faces today. The Symposium—dedicated by Symposium Chair Osama Abi-Mershed to the “spirit of curiosity that animates our research and activities” at Georgetown—involved specialists and experts with long academic, theoretical, and practical engagements with issues of education in the region. The diverse backgrounds and expertise of the panelists resulted in the presentation of a wide variety of perspectives on and approaches to education in the Arab world. The Symposium opened with a discussion of historical approaches to education in the Muslim world: Professor Sebastian Günther offered a scholarly examination of the ...