Embark on Your Adventure

Fall 2023 Registration Closes on May 15, 2023

Orientation

Fall Term - September 4 - 5, 2023

Spring Term - 2024 Dates Coming Soon

Your WorldStrides Gap Year experience begins with a welcome dinner in Athens, Greece. Get to know your fellow Gap Year participants and become acquainted with your first session surroundings.

Session One - Athens

Fall Term - September 6 - 26, 2023

Spring Term - 2024 Dates Coming Soon

Course: Introduction to Sustainability

3 Credits

 This course is an introduction to the basic concepts of sustainability. We will explore the environmental, economic, and social dimensions of sustainability and how these dimensions are interconnected. Topics covered may include the history of environmentalism, consumer behavior and consumption, energy sources, natural and built environments, social issues, public policies, and economic development. 

Students will be asked to engage with the topics through readings, videos, and case studies to deepen their understanding of sustainability challenges and their solutions with an interdisciplinary approach. 

Alternate Course (Dependent on Professor Availability): Introduction to Intercultural Communication

3 Credits

 This course examines questions of identity, culture, and global citizenship through self-reflection about experience outside one’s home country or culture. It attends to the dynamics, and the slipperiness, of distinguishing between international and intercultural experience. Though it is intended for students who are engaged in transnational study abroad, its lessons are equally applicable to domestic study away or even to cross-cultural experience in one’s own “back yard.” 

An immediate purpose of the course is to equip students with some of the tools and knowledge necessary for enhancing their experience abroad/away by coming to a fuller appreciation of how culture informs the beliefs, values and behaviors of groups and individuals. To this end, students will be asked to engage with texts and theories about the nature of experiential learning as well as some popular models for comparing cultures (Hofstede; Meyer) and for understanding and acquiring intercultural competence (Bennett; Paige; Harvey). We will explore travel abroad as an opportunity to learn how to be more flexible, mindful and sensitive when dealing with change, conflict, ambiguity and uncertainty as matters of cultural difference. 

Cultural Excursion - Rome

Fall Term - September 27 - 30, 2023

Spring Term - 2024 Dates Coming Soon

Rome, Italy

A four-day excursion that offers the best of this ancient city. Students will explore the cobblestone laneways taking in all the sites from the Pantheon to the Trevi Fountain to the Roman Forum and the Spanish Steps. A highlight will be a tour inside the Colosseum. The excursion will feature great Italian food and even a cooking lesson. At the end of the time, students will take a train ride to Florence to begin their next session of the program.

Session Two - Florence

Fall Term - October 1 - 19, 2023

Spring Term - 2024 Dates Coming Soon

Course: The Florence Food and Culture Experience

3 Credits

The city of Florence is a veritable mine of food and cultural experiences spanning from the kitchens of the Medici family, to the rustic regional cuisine of Tuscany, to growing rituals such as aperitivo, and high profile restaurants recognized internationally. The aim of this course is to introduce students to the food, street, and culture scenes that set Florence apart from other metropolitan cities, encourage the discussion of the historical influence of its storied past on the food culture of today, and construct a topographical map that indicates the key locations of Florence's thriving gastro-cultural activities.

Cultural Excursion - Paris

Fall Term - October 20 - 23, 2023

Spring Term - 2024 Dates Coming Soon

arial view of Paris France and the Eiffel tower

In this four-day Paris excursion you will see the highlights of the City of Lights. A walking tour will introduce students to the beautiful streetscapes and neighborhoods. The walking tour takes Notre Dame cathedral, the river Seine, and of course, the Eiffel Tower. Students will stroll the Avenue Des Champs-Elysees towards the Arc De Triomphe and climb up the Arch for one of the best views in the city. Other highlights include a tour of the Louvre Museum, the world’s largest museum, and a day trip to the legendary town and gardens of Versailles. It’s a packed four days.

Session Three - Seville

Fall Term - October 24 - November 15, 2023

Spring Term - 2024 Dates Coming Soon

Course: Spanish Art & Architecture

3 Credits

 A survey course, this class provides students with an understanding of the evolution of art and architecture within Spain (the Peninsula) throughout the centuries, in relation to both the development of Western Art overall, and the particular socio-cultural and historical realities in which the studied creative manifestations are created. The artistic contributions of early civilizations to Spanish art and architecture shall be considered, along with that of internationally reputed artists and architects such as Velázquez, Goya, Picasso, Dalí, Gaudí, and Calatrava. Site visits throughout Seville will allow students to further explore the relationship between art/architecture and Sevillian history and culture. 

Cultural Excursion - Meknes

Fall Term - November 16 - 23, 2023

Spring Term - 2024 Dates Coming Soon

Meknes, Morocco

Ride camels to your campsite amidst the sweeping desert landscape of the Sahara. Spend a festive evening under the stars dancing to Moroccan music and feasting on a meal of couscous and roasted meats and vegetables. Rise before dawn to witness the most incredible sunrise as the sun transforms the Sahara into a sea of reds and oranges. During the day ride 4x4s through the desert, stopping to dance to Gnawa music, visit a desert-dwelling family, and hike through a fossil bed. 

Next, explore Fes el-Bali, otherwise known as Old Fes, one of the largest and best-preserved medieval cities in the world. Make room for donkeys as you walk among the bustling bazaars and sacred mosques. Drop in on the workshops of a range of local artisans and craftspeople, including herbalists, weavers, potters, and the world-renowned tanners who make the leather goods for which the Medina is most famous. 

12 Week Course: Introduction to Global Studies

3 Credits

Investigating the increasing interdependence of the world’s economies, populations, cultures, and environments, this course introduces the concept of globalization and explores the knowledge and tools that are needed to address major global issues. Examining globalization through an interdisciplinary lens, the course will focus on how human behavior and interactions are shaped by various systems: value systems, economic systems, political systems, and social groups. We will also look at how globalization impacts the natural world.

This course will ask students to critically engage with the issues, challenges, and possibilities associated with planetary interconnectedness with the goal of becoming a more thoughtful global citizen.

 

Now that you've explored all the locations and plotted the perfect course for your adventure abroad, all that's left to do is make it a reality by securing your spot for this life-changing program.

Have you or a student you know been involved in a community project that promotes change? Check out the Changemaker Scholarship that will award one student who is making a difference full tuition to WorldStrides Gap Year.

Choose Earth Certificate

Want to make an even larger impact while on WorldStrides Gap Year program? Sign up for WorldStrides’ very own Choose Earth Certificate to lessen your footprint while learning about the SDGs abroad!

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