Greece and Rome

Empires


Santorini, Mykonos, Athens and the Peloponnese, Olympia, Rome, Tuscany and Florence

Semester Term 1

Mid September–Late October

Description

Travel and study abroad for an extraordinary term, earning high school credits on location in the most spectacular regions of Italy and Greece. Accelerate academic skills as you explore the classical world’s legacy of philosophy, literature, and art, connecting its impacts to the modern world.

 
60
DAYS 
Three Course Program

Courses Offered

+ Classical Civilization
 Philosophy
 Active Living Leadership
 Human Dimensions
 Modern Media
 English—choice of 3 options
 English

Staffing

9:1 Student to Staff Ratio

Availability

OPEN

*Based on air fares, land tariffs and currency exchange rates as of February, 2018. 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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I found MEI to be the best possible way of learning. Full of adventure, friendship, and knowledge, I will cherish the memories I have made on my adventures for the rest of my life. I have taken part in a total of three MEI programs because, after the first, I knew I could never go back to my normal high school after such amazing experiences with wonderful people. My teachers always showed such interest and excitement for each topic, which helped me understand and enjoy every lesson. MEI will always be a second home to me!

Ben Gundrum
Student, Empires 2017

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I found MEI to be the best possible way of learning. Full of adventure, friendship, and knowledge, I will cherish the memories I have made on my adventures for the rest of my life. I have taken part in a total of three MEI programs because, after the first, I knew I could never go back to my normal high school after such amazing experiences with wonderful people. My teachers always showed such interest and excitement for each topic, which helped me understand and enjoy every lesson. MEI will always be a second home to me!

Ben Gundrum
Student, Empires 2017

Courses Offered

Students complete two mandatory courses and choose one elective.

Mandatory Courses

Classical Civilization
FIRST COURSE OPTION 1
GRADE CODE
11+12 LVV3U + LVV4U
This course introduces students to the rich cultural legacy of the classical world. Students will investigate aspects of classical culture, including mythology, literature, art, architecture, philosophy, science, and technology, as well as elements of the ancient Greek and Latin languages. Students will develop creative and critical thinking skills through exploring and responding to works by classical authors in English translation and examining material culture brought to light through archaeology. They will also increase their communication and research skills by working both collaboratively and independently, and will acquire an understanding and appreciation of the interconnectedness of ancient and modern societies.

Or

Philosophy: Questions and Theories
FIRST COURSE OPTION 2
GRADE CODE
12 HZT4U
This course enables students to acquire an understanding of the nature of philosophy and philosophical reasoning skills and to develop and apply their knowledge and skills while exploring specialized branches of philosophy (the course will cover at least three of the following branches: metaphysics, ethics, epistemology, philosophy of science, social and political philosophy, aesthetics). Students will develop critical thinking and philosophical reasoning skills as they formulate and evaluate arguments related to a variety of philosophical questions and theories. They will also develop research and inquiry skills related to the study and practice of philosophy.

Elective Courses

Recreation + Healthy Active Living Leadership
SECOND COURSE OPTION 1
GRADE CODE
12 PLF4M
This course is dedicated to exploring the benefits of lifelong participation in active recreation and healthy leisure and to develop the leadership and coordinating skills needed to plan, organize, and safely implement recreational events and other activities related to healthy, active living. Students will also learn how to promote the benefits of healthy, active living to others through mentoring and assisting them in making informed decisions that enhance their well-being. The course will help to prepare students for university programs in physical education and health and kinesiology, and for college and university programs in recreation and leisure management, fitness and health promotion, and fitness leadership. Participation and development are the basis and most important components of this course.

Elective Courses

Human Dimensions
SECOND COURSE OPTION 2
GRADE CODE
12 IDC4U
This course explores the influence of human dimensions in a variety of applications. Students examine the historical and environmental contexts that define the relationship between humanity and its environment. The course framework relies heavily on hands-on activities and exercises utilizing the human form in context, and case study applications designed to enhance practical and critical analysis.

Elective Courses

Modern Media
GRADE CODE
12 IDC4U
This course explores the fundamental elements of storytelling in photography and filmmaking, from narrative structure, genre, and character, to cinematic elements and visual composition. Students engage in hands-on digital media production as they learn how to work in a variety of roles. From producing, directing, writing, and editing, all dimensions of the dynamic and collaborative media production industry are examined.

Or

English
GRADE CODE
11+12 ENG3U + ENG4U
The core English course focuses on the refinement of literacy, communication and analytical skills. Students build on their understanding of academic language and practice using it confidently in discussion and argumentation both in oral and written forms.

Or

Studies in Literature
GRADE CODE
12 ETS4U
This course is intended for students who are passionate about literature. Students analyze a range of literary forms including drama, the novel, and poetry, responding personally, critically, and creatively to each.

Or

Writer's Craft
GRADE CODE
12 EWC4U
This course is designed for students who have attained a high level of proficiency in their writing skills and wish to focus on cultivating their creative writing talents by participating in prose, poetry, and drama-writing master classes.

Program Itinerary

Mid September–Late October
Day 1–10 Online Coursework
Day 11–12 Toronto—Departure
Day 12–19 Santorini
Day 19–25 Mykonos
Day 25–30 Athens
Day 30–35 Tolo
Day 35–36 Olympia
Day 36–38 Langadia
Day 38–39 Overnight Ferry
Day 39–50 Rome
Day 50–57 Tuscany
Day 57–60 Florence

Flight and hotel details are available on individual program sites, available to registered students and their parents.

Preparation and Coursework

Preparation and Coursework

Days 1–10

Our one-week online session is designed to connect students with their teachers and classmates, and to help prepare students for their term abroad. Students have access to the course website, where reading lists will be posted and are required to complete all prep work prior to departure to ensure they are ready to hit the ground running overseas.

Departure from Toronto

Departure from Toronto

Day 11–12

Our expedition to Europe begins in Toronto, where teachers and students get to know each other and settle into the rhythm of the program. Here, we conduct activities and complete foundational course material before setting off for Santorini.

Santorini

Santorini

Days 12–19

After landing in Athens, we head to the port of Piraeus, and set sail under the same stars that guided Odysseus. Once believed to be legendary Atlantis, the volcanic island of Santorini is where students begin their investigation into ancient mythology, including Homer’s epic tales of Achilles and the Trojan War. Digging into their course reading list, students also do a comparative study of classical Greek texts with modern interpretations and adaptations. When not debating in lecture, we spend our time wandering the cliffside towns and black sand beaches of this fabled island,  concluding our time there with an epic hike along the caldera from Oia, to watch the sunset over the capital of Fira.

Mykonos

Mykonos

Days 19–25

Along the picturesque Platis Gialos beach on the island of Mykonos, students focus on academic writing and delve into further analysis of our core texts for English. Master classes in essay writing and small group book chats in local cafés allow students to work on their critical communication skills in a relaxed setting. Students have the opportunity to explore the maze of narrow white-washed streets dotted with vibrant pink bougainvilleas, and to try local specialties like grilled octopus, gyros, and honey-soaked loukoumades. At night, Mykonos comes alive as the temperature cools, and local boutiques, frozen Greek yogurt stands, and bakeries stay open late. This is an ideal time for students to explore together, get one-on-one academic feedback from teachers, and perform creative pieces for class podcasts.

Athens and the Peloponnese

Athens and the Peloponnese

Days 25–39

We continue our odyssey with a visit to Athena’s favourite city—Athens. Home to the birthplace of Western democracy, philosophy, art, and architecture, Athens has it all. Our classrooms during our stay include the Theater of Dionysus, the ruins of the Temple of Zeus, and the Parthenon. Here, our evenings are spent exploring the Plaka and enjoying rooftop dinners of moussaka and grilled lamb. Heading southwest, we travel to Tolo, where we consider Homer’s Iliad and the tragic consequences of the Trojan War at the fortressed city of Mycenae. Travelling even further west, we reach our final destination in Greece—Olympia. There, students have the unique opportunity to lace up and run the original Olympic stadium’s track, and visit one of the world’s most important archaeological museums.

Rome

Rome

Days 39–50

Once again, we follow in the footsteps of the ancients, only this time it’s to the glorious ‘Eternal City.’ There, students witness the literal layers of Rome’s history—ancient ruins next to high fashion boutiques, adjacent to soccer stadiums, and St. Peter’s Basilica in the holy Vatican City. Studying the art and architecture of the Roman Empire, students consider the complexity and interconnectedness of history, culture, philosophical thought, and economics. Whether writing morning notes on the steps of Colosseum, performing Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in the Forum, or sampling the world’s best gelato at the Trevi Fountain, in Rome, students witness the ghosts of history come alive.

Tuscany

Tuscany

Days 50–57

Nestled between Rome and Florence, students settle into in the rolling hills of Tuscany, home to Leonardo da Vinci, but more importantly… some of the best food in the entire world! Between steaming plates of fresh pasta, students visit the ancient Etruscan tombs to further delve into the influence of the Roman Empire on contemporary Western culture. Additional day trips to the famous towns of Pitigliano and Montepulciano from our home base in Borgo San Luigi, provide students with a measured balance between exploration, academics, and one-on-one feedback interviews with teachers.

Florence

Florence

Days 57–60

Home of the Renaissance, the famous Medici family, and some of the world’s most beautiful architecture, Florence is the perfect final stop on our exploration of empires. Home to some of the most vibrant markets and beautiful architecture in all of Europe, it is no wonder this city has been the favourite of artists, writers, and popes for centuries. Our days are spent balancing visits to the Uffizi, Il Duomo, and the Accademia—home to Michelangelo’s David—and with our final cumulative tasks. In Florence, students also capture remaining film footage, and put a final polish on their media portfolios. On our final evening, we kick back to indulge in a local Italian feast fit for the Caesars, before bidding a fond farewell to Florence.

Departure from Florence (Day 60)

What’s Included?

 

Program Fee Includes Program Fee Does Not Include
Program Costs

  • Ministry-approved credit(s) upon successful completion of the course(s)
  • Custom course pack
  • Student Login
  • MEI journal
  • 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
  • Transportation between hotel locations via private coach`
  • Transportation for all listed program excursions
Extra Costs

  • Lunches
  • Insurances
  • Gratuities
  • Course texts
  • Medical Insurance and Cancellation Protection*

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

What’s Included?

 

Program Fee Includes
Program Costs

  • Ministry-approved credit(s) upon successful completion of the course(s)
  • Custom course pack
  • Student Login
  • MEI journal
  • 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
  • Transportation between hotel locations via private coach`
  • Transportation for all listed program excursions
Program Fee Does Not Include
Extra Costs

  • Lunches
  • Insurances
  • Gratuities
  • Course texts
  • Medical Insurance and Cancellation Protection*

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

Santorini

Days 12–19

Mykonos

Days 19–25

Athens

Days 25–30

Tolo

Days 30–35

Langadia

Days 36–38

Rome

Days 39–50

Tuscany

Days 50–57

Florence

Days 57–60

Ready to take the next step?

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