High School Study Abroad
Program in Greece and Italy

Ancient World Odyssey

Summer 2023

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Dates

Program Dates*

Early July – Late August, 2023

Travel Dates

Early July – Mid August, 2023

*Program dates include online sessions to prepare students prior to travel and synchronous interviews to complete final assessments after travel.

Locations

  • Athens
  • Rethymno
  • Heraklion
  • Naxos
  • The Peloponnese

Courses Offered

History

Choose One

  • World History: Ancient | LVV4U

English

Choose One

Contact us for course equivalencies in your school board.

Staffing

9:1 Student to Staff Ratio

Refunds and Cancellation

We've made it easier to plan your education while minimizing your financial risks.

Scholarships

Up to $5,000 in Scholarships Available

Availability

open

Why Take this Program?

From the heart of the Greek islands to the soul of Greek democracy, this program offers you an unforgettable odyssey. Homer, Virgil, Cicero and Plato are our guides as we explore the ruins and examine great literature. By reading from Homer's The Iliad and The Odyssey, re-enacting Greek plays, and participating in symposium discussions, you discover hidden insights that transcend time. As Winston Churchill proclaimed, "The farther back, you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see."

Background Pattern Students in a museum

Program Photos

Background Pattern Students posing in Santorini

What People Are Saying

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MEI was the most amazing way I could have ever achieved two high school credits. I honestly can not remember the last time I was really captivated in the classroom. I had very positive and kind teachers who were always willing to give extra help and feedback. They were some of the best teachers I've ever had and made learning so much more fun because they taught with such enthusiasm.

Alexandra Ignjatic

Student, Ancient World Odyssey, 2019

Program Itinerary

Explore this program's detailed itinerary for a sense of the journey ahead!

Students sitting on the steps, journalling
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Online Foundation Work

Program Preparation

Reading lists will be posted on your program site in early May. Online pre-departure sessions with your teachers and classmates begin one week prior to departure. These virtual sessions are designed to introduce you to your classmates, teachers, and course work. Our goal is to prepare you to hit the ground running and reduce your workload onsite.

Plane leaving Toronto
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Departure

Day 1: On the day of departure, we meet at Toronto's Pearson International Airport. Here, we unite as a group to distribute coursepacks, T-shirts and MEI Journals. After a meet and greet, we board a flight to our first location.

The Acropolis
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Athens

Days 2-6: We begin our odyssey with a visit to Athena’s favourite city—Athens. As the birthplace of Western democracy, philosophy, art, architecture, literature, and history, Athens genuinely does have it all. Our classrooms during our stay are in the Theater of Dionysus, among the ruins of the Temple of Zeus, within the Agora, and high atop the Acropolis, while our evenings are spent exploring the streets and enjoying rooftop dinners in this ancient city.

In the Gardens of Capri
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Rethymno

Days 6-12: After our foundational exploration in Athens, we depart for the island of Crete. The most populated Greek island, Crete seamlessly blends ancient sites, bustling streets, and some of the world's most beautiful sandy beaches. A visit to Crete wouldn’t be complete without a hike into the Samaria Gorge and a chance to write a creative piece based on our excursion. Rethymno will be our home while we visit the ancient city and enjoy our afternoons along the sandy beaches of the Aegean.

Beaches of Crete
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Heraklion

Days 12-17: Our journey continues as we rediscover the lost Minoan civilization. We trace the discoveries of Dr. Arthur Evans in 1900 as he searched for the Palace of Minos. As we wander through ancient treasures, the tales of the Minotaur, Daedalus, Theseus and Ariadne come alive in clay tablets, fresco paintings, and the vast labyrinth of the King's palace. From the Heraklion Archeological Museum to Zorba's olive oil trees to sunset beach swims, Crete will be an Island you want to revisit.

Student in Santorini
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Naxos

Days 17-23: From one ancient wonder to another as we continue our trek through the ancient world and find ourselves at the base of the mountainous island of Naxos. As we arrive by ferry, The Portara, or Temple of Apollo, is the first thing we see, and sets the stage for what will be a truly incredible few days. Naxos is known for its island hikes and classic Greek architecture. These factors are what we will use as inspiration when we are writing and performing pieces and journaling about our experiences. Nights are spent roaming the small villages, looking for that perfect souvenir, and breaking bread with classmates while watching the sunset on the Mediterranean.

Ruins of Olympia
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The Peloponnese

Days 23-33: Voyaging across the Ionian Sea, we arrive on the west coast of Greece and spend a night in Olympia, home to the monumental temple of mighty Zeus and birthplace of the original Olympic games. Here, we have the unique opportunity to lace up and run the original Olympic stadium’s track. We continue our exploration of Greece with a trip through the Peloponnese where we explore the prehistoric mountaintop citadel of Mycenae—from which Agamemnon launched his fateful assault on Troy—before heading on to the seaside town of Tolo. Crystal-clear waters, the freshest calamari, and genuine small-town Greek hospitality make this a favourite stop on our journey across the Mediterranean world. Leaving the coast behind, we then visit Epidaurus. Once the most important centre for healing in the ancient world, it is still home to the acoustically perfect theatre that hosts Greek plays during the summer months.

Class photo in Athens ruins
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Athens

Days 33-35: Our study of the ancient world concludes where it began, in Athens. We reflect as we walk the bustling streets and say goodbye to the wonderful food, people, and historical sites we explored. It is here that we choose one aspect of philosophy to delve into for our final thesis paper and presentation. We spend our last days together shopping in the Plaka before enjoying a final rooftop dinner to celebrate a truly epic summer.

Departure from Athens Airport on Day 35

Studying for Finals
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Online Final Evaluation Week

Upon your return, you have time to complete additional research and pull your work together before your final one-on-one online assessment. This week allows you to reflect on your travel experiences and integrate them into the course material. MEI staff have found this style of evaluation enjoyable and the most authentic way for students to demonstrate their knowledge and academic skills.

Athens

rythemno

heraklion

naxos

peloponnese

What's Included

Fee Breakdown

Program Costs

  • Ministry-approved credit(s) upon successful completion of the course(s)
  • Custom course pack
  • Student Login
  • MEI journal
  • MEI T-Shirt
  • Digital yearbook

Travel Costs

  • Hotels and accommodations
  • Breakfast and dinner daily
  • Entrance fees to all course-specific sites
  • Return airfare from Toronto's Pearson International Airport
  • Approximate airline departure taxes, surcharges and fees
  • Airfare between countries
  • Transportation between hotel locations via private coach
  • Transportation for all listed program excursions

Program Fee Does Not Include

  • Lunches
  • Insurances
  • Gratuities
  • Local Transportation
  • Course texts
  • Medical Insurance and Cancellation Protection†
  • Non-refundable $95 Registration Fee

† All students travelling with MEI Academy are required to purchase Medical Insurance.

**Program cost does not include non-refundable $95 registration fee or any airline taxes or fees. Please note the possibility of increases in airfares and land costs prior to departure. Any increase must be borne by the individual participant.

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