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UW in India: Varanasi

Recruiting the Best Faculty

It takes a group effort to ensure that you get the best faculty out there. The Program Director taps into 50+ years of program networks to find instructors who are not only experts in their fields, but also the city of Varanasi itself. Supporting the Program Director is the UW in India Working Group, a group of University of Wisconsin-Madison faculty and study abroad staff who review curricula, approve syllabi, and develop courses for the program. As for faculty training, that happens on site, with guidance from UW and the CET Director of Academic Affairs.

Full-Time, Bilingual, On-Site Staff

The Program Director ensures that you and your classes are a good fit. She directs the curriculum, manages the faculty, and monitors courses. Do you have particular learning needs? Do you need advice on your field work? Talk to the Program Director.

Other programming staff are on site to help you get the most out of the program. They handle housing, excursions, and day-to-day logistics, and are trained in emergency prevention and management. Got an idea for an activity? Need to see a doctor? Just want someone to talk to? The programming staff are your best resource.

Harini Narayanan
Harini Narayanan has extensive experience as a faculty member and administrator for study abroad programs in India, having taught courses on Delhi, Modern Indian History and Sacred Geographies for US undergraduates in Delhi before joining the CET-UW program in Varanasi.  A journalist and urban geographer by training, she has completed doctoral coursework in Urban Geography and an MS in Journalism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Harini researches and writes about the built environment and urban change, and advises not-for-profit organizations on issues related to urban and social equity. She has lived in India, the US, the UK, Tanzania, Zambia, Botswana and South Africa, and is fluent in three languages.

Harini Narayanan

India Programs Director

Sundar Rao
Sundar was born and raised in Varanasi. He began working with the UW in India Program in August 2012. Prior to that, he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce from Banaras Hindu University (1999), worked at a Dell Computers call center in Delhi, and assisted study abroad students in Varanasi as a freelancer.

Sundar Rao

India Student Services Coordinator

Nitish Dave
Nitish is a post graduate from the Mahatma Gandhi Kashi Vidyapith University, where he earned a Master’s degree in Commerce in 2015. He was born and raised in Varanasi and has worked with the UW in India study abroad program since November 2011. He loves working with students, and especially enjoys helping them with their directed field study projects.

Nitish Dave

India Student Services Coordinator

Nichole Springer
Nichole graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a BBA in 2017. During her time as an undergraduate, she focused on international business, marketing, Chinese communication, and South Asian studies. In addition to having traveled to China and Thailand, she is an alumna of the UW in India program. Today she is the India Resident Advisor, where she enjoys sharing her experience and love of the program with CET students.

Nichole Springer

India Resident Advisor