Spring, Summer, & Fall Westmont in San Francisco
Make the beautiful and challenging city of San Francisco your classroom!
At Westmont in San Francisco, you’ll spend a semester with a living-learning community open to all majors while interning in the city and studying an exciting curriculum focused on global studies. Join 20-25 students living in an historic Victorian mansion in the heart of the city, where you’ll work for organizations serving populations such as the homeless and refugees or for financial and technology companies. Take classes in economics, sociology, theology or literature that satisfy general education requirements and offer effective and meaningful Christian engagement with the poor and the marginalized throughout the world. Grapple with the big questions: Who am I? Who is my neighbor? What is God calling me to do? The community gathers on Tuesday evenings so professors and students can cook for each other and worship and read Scripture together. Our students report that their transformational experiences have shaped their lives well beyond college.
Outstanding faculty, leading researchers, and public writers eager to integrate faith with rigorous academic work and Christian practice teach a range of course, including these offerings (past and current):
- Global Poverty and Economic Development
- 21st-Century Technology and the Meaning of Life
- Sociology of Migration and Urban Poverty
- Faith, Poverty, and Justice
- Studies in Literature: the Enviornment
A few slots are still open!
Please contact Kristen (email@example.com) to apply.
Application deadline is March 27, 2020
Open to students of all majors, sophomores through seniors. Priority will be given to students who apply by the deadline. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more about the program.
An elaborate Victorian mansion, the Clunie House is located on the Panhandle of Golden Gate Park a few blocks from the famous Haight-Ashbury neighborhood. Its unique setting (only three miles from downtown and four miles from the Pacific Ocean) allows you to immerse yourself in life and culture of the city. Using nearby public transportation, you can explore the city's many attractions and commute to various internship sites. The Haight-Ashbury, Inner Sunset, Inner Richmond, Japantown, Pacific Heights and Castro districts are minutes away. Golden Gate Park begins directly across the street and features green space and areas for outdoor recreation. Pursue endless possibilities with the city of San Francisco at your front door!
At the beginning of the semester, training sessions with Career Development & Calling staff will prepare you to search for an internship and equip you with skills such as resume-writing and interviewing that you'll also find helpful in your professional endeavors after college. You'll meet with professors to identify possible internships in San Francisco, and you'll complete three interviews at various placement sites before choosing an internship.
Fulfills GE Serving Society
This 8-unit course is centered on participation in an internship related to the professional and vocational interests of each student. Internship opportunities exist for students of all majors. The amount of major credit received is determined by departmental guidelines and the type of internship selected. Components of the course include attendance at all placement orientation workshops during the first week of the semester (for Fall/Spring only); interviewing with at least three agencies/organizations prior to selecting an internship site; development of a detailed learning contract in consultation with one's site supervisor; and engagement with regular reading and writing assignments aimed at the reflective integration of theory and praxis.
The internship is accompanied by a required weekly seminar.The purpose of this required seminar is to enable students to critically engage and reflect on their daily internship experiences in renewed faith-based ways. The course is designed to foster a deeper understanding of personal-vocational identity. Through guest speaker presentations and shared dialogue on common workplace dynamics, this course seeks to help students discover what it means to live faithfully amidst a range of complex and diverse settings while integrating a Christ-centered perspective
“Introduction to San Francisco” is a one-unit course providing essential background and context to help students understand the history and diversity of San Francisco, especially the challenges and opportunities facing specific neighborhoods of this city where they will be living, learning, and working for a semester. Students will engage with the presence and influence of “The City” in our world by becoming more confident navigating this particular city, San Francisco. As students become accustomed to navigating this city, they will deepen their encounter with the urban world. Students will gain knowledge and experience of the city’s diverse social and cultural communities through field trips, interviews, reading, and neighborhood studies.
Elective Courses: Fall 2020
An exploration of the ways of knowing provided by narrative, poetry and drama. The course invites us to see how literature reveals things we cannot know except by inference or by metaphor. Further, by encouraging us to practice compassion by imagining the other, the course involves us in ways of knowing that are inherently ethical. Content varies; faculty usually include selections from historically underrepresented writers. Requires at least four formal papers or the equivalent, involving a minimum of sixteen pages of analytic writing.
Fulfills GE Reading Imaginative Literature and GE Writing/Speech Intensive; taught by Dr. Marilyn McEntyre
Sociology of Immigration explores the 1) transnational; 2) demographic; and 3) sociological dimensions of contemporary, urban poverty. Using San Francisco and Oakland as our laboratory, students will conduct community-based, participatory research not only to unpack the underlying factors of poverty, but also to develop solutions with low-income communities. Special attention will be paid to refugee and immigrant communities of color.
Fulfills GE Understanding Society; taught by Dr. Russell Jeung
This course invites students to cultivate a deeper awareness of, and engagement with, cultural difference and diversity - particularly in relation to the urban context of the San Francisco Bay Area which will serve as the living-learning laboratory for an integrative exploration into the themes of empathy & compassion; intercultural intelligence & competency; and social privilege & inequality from a distinctively Christian worldview perspective.
Fulfills GE Understanding Society; taught by Professor Brad Berky
This course is designed to help Westmont in San Francisco students stay active and healthy while offering opportunities to explore the landscapes, streetscapes & local opportunities for indoor physical activities throughout the City. Involvement in this course will give students practice in exploring new urban spaces, in minimizing your impact on resources, and in discovering how some forms of exercise can help navigate the stress of urban living.
Fulfills 1 unit of PEA GE credit; taught by Professor Brad Berky
The study of disabilities encountered in clinical and educational settings, including description, etiology, and characteristics of a variety of physical and cognitive disabilities. In addition, this course is designed to broaden awareness of disability beyond traditional cultural attitudes and norms, emphasizing a social-political definition of disability.
Taught as an intensive. Classes will begin a week before the program starts. There are no set class meeting dates during the semester, although there will be 1 or 2 mandatory intensive weekends.
Fulfills GE Serving Society; taught by Dr. Chris Milner
Prerequisite: Admissions math requirement.
Exploratory data analysis, correlation and regression. Distributions: normal, binomial, Student's t, chi-square, F. Inferential statistics: parametric and non-parametric tests for population parameters; tests for goodness-of-fit and independence; t-tests; one- and two-way analysis of variance. Extensive use of spreadsheets.
Fulfills GE Reasoning Abstractly and Quantitative & Analytical Reasoning; taught by Dr. Bruce Wydick
As needed, students may take courses at City College San Francisco to fulfill their academic requirements. Please note this may require arriving earlier or leaving later in the semester to accommodate the CCSF academic calendar. Students must get consent from WSF faculty before enrolling in courses. More information can be found on the City College of San Francisco website.
Faculty & Staff
Bruce joined Westmont in San Francisco as the new director this fall. He is a highly esteemed writer and scholar, and an advisor and builder of church, parachurch, and nonprofit programs. His new book Shrewd Samaritan: Faith, Economics, and the Road to Loving our Global Neighbor was published in 2019 by Thomas Nelson (HarperCollins).
With over twenty years with Westmont in San Francisco, Brad is the Director and Professor of Urban Practicum. He was a student the program and has been a faculty member since 1990, thus providing him with a unique depth of insight and experience around what makes a semester in San Francisco so transformative.
Kristen oversees the marketing and operations of the program. After spending a year and half with the program in 2016-2018, she is so excited to be back!
Sophie joined the Westmont in San Francisco staff in August 2019, after being a participant Spring 2017. Sophie contributes to building community with students at the Clunie House.
The cost of the program matches the cost of a semester on Westmont’s campus (tuition, fees, room and board). Yes, financial aid applies even if you have studied abroad already or plan to go abroad in the future. Consider a semester in San Francisco as Westmont off-campus housing.
Find additional information about Westmont in San Francisco at the Off-Campus Programs Office on your home campus. Download and read the WSF Student Handbook, which will answer a lot of your questions and prepare you for your time in San Francisco.