[T]he discomfort I endured last semester was something new. From the start, I realized that many students in the class were not as interested in exploring the seminal issues of U.S. military history as they were in finding solace, seeking closure, or securing an understanding of their own—or, in many cases, their loved ones'—recent military experiences.
Even if we take into consideration that there is a geographical element to it - the university is in Texas which has large bases of the US Department of Defense - her article raises important questions for other areas of scholarship, teaching and academic debates.
While the focus in universities is often on 'employability' and equipping students with skills prior to their departure, the question for a field like development studies is what skills and services are or will be necessary if students with experiences in development work join MA or PhD programmes. Right now, most development studies programmes follow a traditional academic model where students meet in class for discussions and write papers on certain topics. This can be an entry point for reflective writing, engaging with stimulating literature and understanding some theoretical aspects of development better, but it leaves out the personal component.
Also on aidnography:
Who is the 'development industry'?
Do we need an MA in Social Media and Development ?
Should I consider a PhD in International Development?