Experience the rich cultural diversity of China on a high school study abroad program that will introduce you to remote ethnic minority cultures in China, including Miao, Dong, Buyi, and Zhuang communities. Learn about the history of these cultures and current government policies affecting these minority communities. Spend time in the beautiful and remote rural landscape of southern China. You will be introduced to field plowing and rice production and will learn about traditional crafts and trades such as papermaking, watercolor painting, batik, embroidery, weaving, and blacksmithing. Contrast daily life in rural communities with life in the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Luoyang, and Xi’an.
Begin your exploration of China’s cultures in the capital city, Beijing, where you’ll see important sites such as Tiananmen Square, the Forbidden City, and the Great Wall. Next, discover the rich history of Luoyang, one of the four great ancient capitals of China. Visit temples and learn about the history of Buddhism in China. Spend time in Xi’an, one of China’s oldest cities. Take Chinese language lessons and see important historical and cultural sites, including the famous Terra-Cotta Warriors. Two homestay experiences—one in a city and one in a rural village—will allow you to experience daily life in China in very different contexts.
Throughout the program, you’ll attend performances of traditional dancing and singing and see stunning natural sites such as Huangguoshu Waterfall National Park and Moon Hill. End your experience in China with three days of exploration and reflection in Shanghai, where you will visit a number of important sites such as Yuyuan Garden, Old City, Longhua Temple, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Nanjing Road, and The Bund. Chinese high school students will accompany you during portion of the program.
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Experience the diverse communities, historical complexity, and geographic diversity of Peru during a month of cultural exploration on this immersive high school summer abroad program. Immediately begin learning about Peru’s history and different ethnic communities during the orientation in Lima — Peru’s capital and largest city, overlooking the Pacific coast — while visiting the Larco Museum, the city’s colonial areas, and other important sites.
In the city of Trujillo, in northern Peru, spend two weeks living with a Peruvian family. Once the center of Chimú culture, Trujillo is known as the capital of marinera dance and the land of the Peruvian Paso horse. During this period, you and your group have music and dance workshops while learning about the unique culture, Afro-Peruvian rhythms, and artistic heritage of the region. Meet with local students to engage in English-Spanish language study exchanges, and go on an excursion to Cajamarca to explore pre-Inca archaeological sites and artifacts. During your daylong excursion to Pacasmayo harbor, work with local residents on a volunteer project, such as helping to paint and repair community buildings or working at a soup kitchen.
Your Peruvian exploration continues as you travel to Cuzco, a fascinating mix of pre-Columbian and colonial history, art, and architecture and long considered the archaeological capital of the Americas. Visit the temple Coricancha, the walled complex Sacsayhuamán, and the archaeological site Tambomachay. From Ollataytambo — an ancient Incan mountain town — take a two-hour train ride to Machu Picchu, the “Lost City of the Incas,” to experience one of the most treasured historical and archaeological sites in the world.
Orientation: Lima, 5 days
Homestay: Trujillo, 15 days
Other Accommodations: Hotels
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Experience the natural beauty of Argentina through a month of cultural immersion, outdoor activities, and community service. Begin your high school summer abroad in Argentina’s capital, where you and your group will explore the city’s art galleries, theaters, and boulevards and start practicing your Spanish. Sail by catamaran to the city’s surrounding islands to learn about the region’s ecology and biosystems.
From Buenos Aires, travel to colonial Salta La Linda, capital of the Salta province, on Argentina’s northern frontier, where you'll spend two weeks sharing day-to-day life with an Argentine host family. During this period, work on a community service project such as volunteering at a center for children with developmental disabilities or helping to renovate an orphanage or kindergarten. Study Spanish in language classes with other members of your group and learn about local gaucho culture. Go hiking or white-water rafting. Continue on to the small town of Chicoana, just south of the city of Salta, where you'll assist on service learning activities such as painting or landscaping.
Then, embark on a week of outdoor exploration with your group and leaders. Ride horseback, stay on a large ranch, and enjoy traditional barbeque. Travel through the mountains to the city of Cafayate, stopping at famous rock formations. In Cafayate, take a bike tour of the city and then ride to the sand dunes. Return to Buenos Aires for a final day of exploration and reflection.
Orientation: Buenos Aires, 4 days
Homestay: Salta,* 14 days
Other Accommodations: Hotels, campsite, hostels