Early July — Mid August, 2023
July 2nd — July 27th, 2023
*Program dates include online sessions to prepare students prior to travel and synchronous interviews to complete final assessments after travel. Dates are subject to change.
- Swiss Alps
9:1 Student to Staff Ratio
Why Take this Program?
Get ready for eclectic art, tasty food, and an abundance of inspirational literature as we travel across the continent. Starting in the Eternal City, Rome, and ending in the Capital of Bavaria, Munich, this program promises a variety of literary insights. As you make your way through each location, our selected authors will penetrate the local culture and idiosyncrasies of the human spirit. Voltaire will give you his views of the world in Candide, Nietzsche will baffle your brain with insights from Thus Spoke Zarathustra, and in Night, Elie Wiesel will connect you to the atrocities of the holocaust. Get ready for a literary journey that will change your life.
What People Are Saying
MEI was a life changing experience. The teachers were incredible and willing to help with anything, academic or personal. MEI gave me the opportunity to travel to new countries with an amazing group that I know I will have as friends forever.
Student, English in Western Europe, 2019
Explore this program's detailed itinerary for a sense of the journey ahead!
Online Foundation Work
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.
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.
Days 2 — 7: We begin our journey in the eternal city of Rome. With visits to the Colosseum and the ruins of the Forum, we journey through time, from the city’s earliest beginnings to its tragic collapse. The ghosts of Romulus, Caesar, and Augustus echo through the streets as we investigate what is perhaps the world’s greatest open-air museum. Whether writing morning notes on the steps of St. Peter's Basilica, performing Shakespeare's Julius Caesar in the Roman Forum or sampling the world's best gelato at the Trevi Fountain, in Rome, students witness the ghosts of history come alive.
Days 7 — 11: Our second stop is the home of the Renaissance. Conjuring names such as da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Medici, and some of the world’s most beautiful architecture, Florence is the ideal place to see what an explosion of thought, art, and culture can bring to a city, and indeed, the West. While interspersing our days with visits to the Uffizi, Il Duomo, and the Accademia—home to Michelangelo’s David—students are captivated by some of the most vibrant markets, and some of the most beautiful architecture, in Europe. It is no wonder this city has been the favourite of artists, writers, and popes for centuries.
Days 11 — 17: We hit the ground running in the City of Light, where we consider the influence of French art, literature, history and philosophy on the English language and culture. The introduction of the French language and culture to England provided not only new words but new ideas and new ways of looking at the world. While exploring the romantic cobblestone streets of St. Germain, picnicking in the gardens of Versailles, and examining some of the most famous art in the world at the Musée D’Orsay and the Musée du Louvre, students take in all that Paris has to offer.
Days 17 — 21: Making our way to the top of Europe, students emerge from the Stechelberg gondola to find their new home in the picture-postcard Swiss village of Gimmelwald. Here, we hike mountains and roast marshmallows by the fireside—with the clamour of giant cowbells, bleating mountain goats, and the sound of rushing waterfalls all around. Academically, students work on essay writing and receive one-on-one mentorship while enjoying morning coffee overlooking the Alps.
Days 21 — 26: In Munich, we introduce you to the works of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe and the WWII holocaust novel Night by Eli Wiesel. These authors help us connect to the universal literary themes of salvation and survival and Munich is filled with cultural traditions revealed in their writings. From St. Michael's Church to the English Gardens, from Hitler's speeches at Odeonsplatz to the horrific legacy of the Dachau Concentration Camp, students will be exposed to how literature brings the past alive. With each poem, story, and song, you will have a deeper connection to what makes Munich a fitting place to end our literary journey. As a reprieve, we'll pack picnic lunches and visit Lake Starnberg to get a dose of nature and Bavarian-lake serenity. Our adventurous summer ends with one last dinner at the legendary Hofbräuhaus where we reminisce on all that we have experienced.
Departure from Munich Airport on Day 26
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.
- Ministry-approved credit(s) upon successful completion of the course(s)
- Custom course pack
- Student Login
- MEI journal
- MEI T-Shirt
- Digital yearbook
- 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
- 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.