Storytelling Abroad Program


Storytelling Abroad Program

In partnership with the Swearer Center and Hong Kong Polytechnic University, the Storytelling Abroad Program brings together a team of up to four Brown University undergraduate students with skills in storytelling (writing, photography and filmmaking, etc.) for a 10-week paid summer internship to document the Hong Kong Polytechnic students' service programs in Cambodia, Rwanda and/or Vietnam.


Every summer, Hong Kong Polytechnic University (HKPU) organizes several overseas service projects for its students. Brown students have opportunities to travel alongside Hong Kong Polytechnic University student teams as they serve in Rwanda, Cambodia, Myanmar, Indonesia and/or Vietnam. Storytelling Abroad participants document, through photos, videos and/or interviews, the work performed by the students, the teachers and the impact on the community. Students then publish their work into a series of blog articles, social media post, and videos, with the goal of creating booklet and a series of videos which document the program.

This opportunity involves traveling to overseas sites in developing countries. Some of these sites are in rural areas with challenging environments such as mountainous terrain and with temperatures routinely rising above 100° F.  Projects that HKPU students will be working on include engineering/renewable energy, health care, eye care, nutrition and hotel or hospitality training.

The program typically runs for 10 weeks beginning the last week of May, and will require student travel between community service sites abroad and Hong Kong as they work on the media production.

Successful applicants will be offered:

  • A stipend of HK$10,140/month (approximately $1,200 USD/month)

  • Accommodation in Hong Kong

  • Basic expenses during the overseas service trips (e.g. visa, travel, accommodation and board)

Students are responsible for:

  • Arranging their own travel to and from Hong Kong at the beginning and end of the program (note that this travel happens before the stipend is paid).

  • Any vaccinations deemed necessary by their physician

  • Attending 3 workshops in the Spring semester at Brown University to prepare for their summer experience


Interested students are expected to be able to express themselves well in writing and/or multimedia (photography or video).  Experience in creative writing or media production is a plus, as is prior experience in traveling abroad, especially to developing countries. Students must be medically and physically fit for travel to such locations and have a valid passport that is not barred from traveling to the following countries: Rwanda, Cambodia, Myanmar, Indonesia and/or Vietnam. Students who have a track record in community engagement activities are preferred.


Application for the summer of 2020 will are available here on BrownEngage on December 2nd and close February, 5th 2020 at 12 noon.  


For more information, please contact Steve Pokorny (, Program Manager, at the Swearer Center.
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