As a part of the academic partnership between the Royal Thimphu College (RTC) and Wheaton College of Massachusetts, USA, a group of 5 students and a staff member from RTC visited Wheaton College from March 15 to March 28, 2018. During the 2-week exchange programme, the RTC students interacted with the Wheaton students who had previously studies at RTC. Besides campus life at Wheaton College, students also actively took part in academic engagements, attending a minimum of 2 classes per day, which provided students with a first-hand understanding of the typical American college experience.
The group gave presentations on Bhutan and showcased Bhutanese cultural items at Elizabeth W. Amen Nursery School and also during the ‘International Bazaar 2018” at Balfour Hood to celebrate Wheaton’s diverse student body. Over the weekend, the group also visited New York City to explore some of the famous cultural and historical sites which included the Statue of Liberty, the World Trade Centre and the Glided Age mansions in Newport.
The Center for Global Education based in Wheaton College also arranged a tour to Brown University for the RTC students. Through the visit to Boston, America’s walking city, the group was able to walk back into the annals of history by following the freedom trail which led them to celebrated sites such as Paul Revere’s House, Old North Church, Faneuil Hall and the visit to New England Aquarium. For all RTC participants, this was their first visit to the US and a highlight of their time at the college.
The RTC-Wheaton Partnership was first established in 2009, with Wheaton College sending over 100 students starting from 2010. Since 2015, RTC has sent 20 students to Wheaton College to participate in a short-term exchange programme. This year, five students have participated in this programme.
The Royal Thimphu College and Wheaton College further strengthened their partnership in March, 2014 with a revised MoU that allowed for a two-way exchange programme, making it possible for RTC students to visit Wheaton College. The programme will continue each year.
RTC currently has formal partnerships with numerous educational institutes around the world, and the Wheaton-RTC programme has been the flagship of RTC’s efforts to provide more international learning opportunities for its students. RTC currently has over 20 international students from 9 countries around the world.