CASI Student Programs Blog

Since 2007, the Center for the Advanced Study of India (CASI) at the University of Pennsylvania has supported 175 students! Welcome to the home base for CASI students and alumni to share their thoughts, reflections, and ongoing learnings about their internships, research projects, and travels in India and beyond.

As an Australian born Chinese with parents who exposed me to the negotiation strategies of Beijing’s Silk Street Market in early adolescence, I am no stranger to bargaining. And I had been informed extensively by almost everyone that as an obvious foreigner in India, I would constantly be ripped off. And they were right – […]

The pace of our work in Araku Valley is fast and slow. Our 6-day weeks are long and tiring, and we visit a new and different village every day. But each day begins and ends with a long and stunningly beautiful 30 minute to 3 hour long drive and is punctuated with vibrant people and […]

Every time I tell someone I’m going to be spending 10 weeks in India over the summer, it is usually followed by “what are you going to be doing for 10 weeks?!” and “what are you most excited for?” After giving these questions much thought,  I’ve decided to be like every other basic traveller and […]

A few days ago, I walked into Aravind Eye Hospital’s Outpatient Clinic at 8:30 AM, half an hour before work generally begins to meet a nurse in the pediatric department. She made time out of her day serving hundreds of children to speak with me, an intern, about ideas for my project. Even at this […]

What lengths would you go to to see the Taj Mahal? If you were like most (sane) tourists, you’d probably do a 3 hour tour bus ride from Delhi to Agra, a half hour auto-rickshaw ride, and cough up the 1000 rupee foreigner’s entrance fee. But Angela and I, we’re not totally sane people. Oh […]

My parents keep asking me why I had to choose India. “Why not somewhere closer to home? Somewhere safer? Somewhere more western or more developed? Why not go with your second choice instead to Shanghai, a place you’re already familiar with?” I chose India because, probably like most other CASI interns, I wanted to challenge […]