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CCDS’ International Studies Rebound

Aaryan C.

After two years of the pandemic, Country Day has bounced back stronger than ever, offering a plethora of international opportunities for Upper School students to embrace. If the number of applicants to these trips are any indication, going without any opportunities abroad due to COVID for more than two years, Country Day students are ecstatic to finally be able to explore the world again. However, naturally, we are all wondering how Country Day’s Department of International Studies was able to create six global opportunities for the students right out of the pandemic. Director of International Studies David Lynn describes that the “process is extraordinarily complicated. Airline and hotel rules have changed, and everything is extremely unpredictable. We are fortunate to have long term contacts and partnerships overseas that are helping us envision the future.” Despite the world’s traveling rules being vastly different and more complicated, Country Day was still able to give their students the international education they so desire. We are fortunate to have such a devoted and capable international studies department. 

See the 2023 trips below! 

INTERNATIONAL

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Spain & Morocco Language & Cultural Experience

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Students will explore Spain’s southern region of Andalusia, where they will enjoy homestays in Sevilla. Students will participate in guided visits in the region, such as day trips to the neighboring cities of Cordoba and Granada. Andalusia is known for its rich history as much as it is for its natural beauty which students will take in through a variety of outdoor activities. From the smell of the orange trees that line up the streets of Sevilla to the tasteful Spanish dishes, Andalusia is a feast to the senses. While in Sevilla, students will work to improve their Spanish language skills while engaging with the local community and culture. Possible activities include Spanish language classes, a Mediterranean cooking class, a ceramic painting workshop, a Flamenco dance lesson and show, and an exchange activity with local high school students. The experience will culminate with visits to different locations in Morocco to discover how the Moorish culture has influenced Spain, its language, and its culture. While in Spain the entirety of the experience will be in Spanish, ¡por supuesto! Students will have an opportunity to earn transcript recognition as a Country Day international experience. The purpose of this trip is to expand students’ Spanish language proficiency through immersion and discover the connections between the Moorish and Spanish cultures, and runs from June 3rd to 16th, 2023.

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In 1995, the City of Charlotte established sister cities relations with Ghana’s second most populous city, Kumasi. Country Day students will participate in a people-to-people visit to Kumasi with potential visits to schools, businesses, and city government. This group will also take in Ghana’s thriving capital city, Accra, and journey the Cape Coast where we will pay homage to those who passed through the “Gate of No Return” (recently renamed “Door of Return”). Student participants will prepare for this experience with an exploration of Charlotte’s Ghanaian community. Students will have an opportunity to earn transcript recognition as a Country Day international experience. The purpose of this trip is to explore the history, culture, and natural environment of Ghana, and to participate in people-to-people partnership with peers and adults in Kumasi. This trip runs from March 9th to 19th, 2023 - Spring Break.

Ghana Cultural Experience

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Students will take in the theatre scene in London, Stratford-upon-Avon, and Edinburgh, through watching performances and participating in theatre workshops. Additionally, the Country Day Theatre Program will perform for a day at Edinburgh’s Fringe Festival which includes over 3,000 different performances of music, theatre, dance, and comedy during its three-week run. Students will also take in performances and theatre workshops while in Edinburgh. Participation in Scotland Theatre will involve pre-departure rehearsals to prepare for the performance “Dr. Seuss’s Cat in the Hat” under the supervision of Mrs. Goodfellow. At least one performance will take place in Charlotte. Students will have an opportunity to earn transcript recognition as a Country Day international experience. The purpose of this trip is to allow performing arts students the opportunity to showcase their skills on the international stage while being exposed to a global arts experience, and runs from July 29th to August 8th, 2023.

Scotland Theater Experience

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Sister Cities People-to-People Experience

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Students will start in Warsaw, Poland and head westward by train and public bus to Charlotte’s three European sister cities: Wrocław, Poland; Krefeld, Germany; and Limoges, France. This journey will have a budgeted backpacking spirit with safe & clean budget accommodations and potential paired homestays in sister cities. Students will engage in regular people-to-people interactions with European peers, adults, and community leaders. Good walking shoes, a sturdy backpack (no suitcases), and a sense of adventure will be required. Brief stops will be made in the capital cities of the counties visited. Students will play an active role in advising the planning of the itinerary. Students will have an opportunity to earn transcript recognition as a Country Day international experience. The purpose of this trip is to connect with peers and adults in Charlotte’s three sister cities, and to experience the European way-of-life and culture while utilizing public transportation. This trip runs from June 3rd to 18th, 2023.

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Students will experience for themselves a country whose sites, sounds, smells, and tastes have inspired artists for generations. The group will fly into Florence, staying for five nights and enjoying an introduction to the most significant art pieces of the city. Some of the highlights in Florence include the Uffizi Gallery and the Academia Gallery where students can admire Michelangelo’s “David.” While in Florence, they will participate in a two-day workshop and create their own fresco. After Florence, they will head to Cortona where they will stay for a week. In Cortona, students will be based at a restored monastery, painting as they overlook the Tuscan landscape. Students will receive instruction in technique and will have time to work independently on their projects. From Cortona, students will explore the region, including Sienna and Assisi, through day visits. Finally, students will travel back to Florence to return to the US. Their artistic creations will be displayed in Hance Gallery during the fall following the experience. Students will have an opportunity to earn transcript recognition as a Country Day global experience. The purpose of this trip is to develop a deeper appreciation of the visual arts by giving students the opportunity to see and study some of the great art works of Western Civilization while, at the same time, cultivating their own artistic talents through field and studio work. This trip runs from June 3rd to 16th, 2023.

Italy Arts Experience

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