T4945 – Hawai’i: Multi-Cultural Communication in Diverse Organizations

O’ahu and Kaua’i
Faculty: Debra Petersen and Kevin Sauter
12/31/2017 – 01/25/2018

In “Hawai‘i: Multi-Cultural Communication in Diverse Organizations,” we examine the concepts, theories, and realities of the way individuals and groups work and communicate in organizations where culture and multiculturalism play a primary or prominent role.

Academic Overview
In “Hawai‘i: Multi-Cultural Communication in Diverse Organizations,” we examine the concepts, theories, and realities of the way individuals and groups work and communicate in organizations where culture and multiculturalism play a primary or prominent role. We do so in Hawai‘i because our fiftieth state is a microcosm of multi-ethnic cultures and co-cultures, all interacting in a business, retail, nonprofit and arts environment. Hawai’i provides us with a living laboratory in which we can study and experience multicultural communication and organizations. As we examine multi-cultural and organizational communication, we will be challenged to examine our own cultural identities and assumptions, asking ourselves not only about the role that culture plays in the experiences and observations we will make as part of the class, but as they translate to our daily lives and experiences back on the mainland in our careers and personal life.

Program Fee
Cost: $5825 – $6125
*Each home institution may have supplementary fees in addition to the price listed.  Comprehensive Fee includes:  Transportation and course arrangements as indicated, hotel accommodations in twin and triple rooms, seven lunches and five dinners (subject to change).

There are no prerequisites for this course.

Required Readings
L.A. Samovar, R.E. Porter, E.R. McDaniel, C.S. Roy (2015). Intercultural Communication: A Reader (14th edition). Boston, Mass.: Cengage Learning.

Additional Required Readings Include:
Barbas, Samantha “’I’ll Take Chop Suey’: Restaurants as Agents of Culinary and Cultural Change,” Journal of Popular Culture, Spring 2003, Vol. 36 Issue 4, 669-685.

Buck, Elizabeth. Paradise Remade: The Politics of Culture and History in Hawai’i. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1993: 1-17.

Rosenberg, Emily S. A Date Which Will Live: Pearl Harbor in American Memory. Durham: Duke University Press, 2003.

  • Reviving Pearl Harbor After 1991”
  • “The Memory Boom and the ‘Greatest Generation’”
  • “Japanese Americans”
  • “Day of Infamy”

Cress, Christine M. “What is Service Learning?” in Learning Through Serving. A Student Guidebook for Service-Learning Across the Disciplines. Edited by Christine M. Cress, Peter J.

Collier, Vicki L. Reitenauer and Associates. Sterling, Virginia: Stylus, 2005.

Russell, Carol, “The Sun, The Surf, The Spam,” Star Tribune, February 23, 2008.

Steinhauer, Jennifer, “Carbo-Loading, Hawai’ian Style,” New York Times, November 12, 2008. 

Guided Journal Assignments:                 200 points possible
Quizzes:                                               150 points possible
Final Project:                                        100 points possible
Attendance and Full Participation:           50 points possible                                     
                                                           500 total points


Program Directors
Debra Peterson, Ph.D., University of St. Thomas (651) 962.5828, email: dlpetersen@stthomas.edu

Kevin Sauter, Ph.D., University of St. Thomas (651) 962-5821, email: KOSAUTER@stthomas.edu

Description of Faculty Directors
Prof. Petersen is an associate professor in the Communication and Journalism Department. In her 26 years at the University of St. Thomas, she has been a full-time faculty member in the Communication and Journalism Department, director of the Luann Dummer Center for Women, and an associate of the Women’s Studies program. She has successfully taught abroad for UST and UMAIE, including as the sole instructor of the UST course “COMM 322 Intercultural Communication in Copenhagen – Advanced Readings in Intercultural Listening” during the extended summer session in 2003 and 2005. She has successfully co-instructed the UMAIE course, “Hawaiʻi: Multi-Cultural Communication in Diverse Organizations,” eight times. She co-authored a scholarly article, “Service-Learning in the ‘Away-From-Campus’ Context: Lessons, Experiences, and Practical Wisdom from the Hawaiʻian Ke Kula Niʻihau O Kekaha School Projects,” based on the Hawaiʻi course. Prof. Petersen received the UST Global Citizenship Faculty Award for her commitment to international and intercultural awareness throughout the UST community and the UST Outstanding Faculty in Service-Learning Award for her service on the Service-Learning Advisory Board and the extensive service-learning projects in many of her courses, including “Hawaiʻi: Multi-Cultural Communication in Diverse Organizations” and has also published scholarly papers based on her research and experience. 

Dr. Sauter is a Professor of Communications at the University of St. Thomas. He has been teaching intercultural courses that have looked carefully at the relationship between culture and communication. His scholarship is primarily focused on political communication, and he is often asked to provide analysis and commentary for local media outlets on campaign advertising and presidential debates. He lived in Durban, South Africa for a year while on sabbatical in 2001-02. Dr. Sauter has been a co-director of the UMAIE course, Hawaii: Multicultural Communication in Organizational Settings on nine occasions.

Application Procedures & Deadline
· Select the How to Apply link to start your online application.
· All applications received by your home institutions priority deadline will be sent to the faculty immediately. Applications will be taken after that deadline for programs with space still remaining until the final application deadline of October 1, 2017.

Final Application Deadline: October 1, 2017

For more information on course content, contact Debra Peterson
On application procedures or logistical information, contact your study abroad office.


How To Apply


Rules and Procedures 2017 (PDF)

Rules and Procedures
Each UMAIE member school has their own application process in place. The UMAIE application process is described in the attached PDF file, and the required documents are available in the How to Apply section.

Applications are accepted until October 1, 2017.
No application will be considered without ALL the required signed documents, copies and a deposit check. If you have any questions please contact your campus UMAIE Board Member.


Travel Packet

ePacket (Link)

Click the image at left to access the course Travel Packet. The ePacket contains important information about traveling abroad, including your itinerary, frequently asked questions, participant letter and culturegram.

Preliminary Itinerary will be posted by October 16.
Final Itinerary will be posted by December 7.


The Orientation process includes 3 components:
– an online self-study and quiz on the UMAIE student handbook.
– an in-person orientation conducted by your faculty director(s)
– an on-site orientation upon arrival.

You are REQUIRED to participate in and complete all 3 steps within the deadlines specified below. Failure to do so may result in your removal from the course.

Student Handbook and Online Quiz

2018 Student Manual (PDF)

We have put together this handbook to provide you with helpful information for planning and spending your time abroad. The handbook is also your primary study guide to pass your online quiz. There are excellent tips in this handbook, and it is organized in a way we hope will be user-friendly and straightforward.

Please carefully read the UMAIE student handbook and complete the quiz on the UMAIE student handbook by October 20, 2017.


quiz_thumbYou can access the online quiz through your online application by logging in to your school’s study abroad website. Complete the 2018 UMAIE Participant Quiz under Assessments on your online application portal.

For students at St. Ambrose University, see your study abroad adviser for a paper copy of the quiz.

 Orientation Session

The orientation session for this course will be conducted in-person. You will be notified of the time and location of your orientation.
If you have not received notice, contact your Study Abroad Program Director.


Participants are required to bring their Student ID card with them on the course to qualify for reduced student entrances at many sites. Without your ID, you could be responsible to pay any difference in entrance fees.