NEWBERG, OR (Vocus) May 11, 2010
Nearly 200 George Fox University students are on 12 international study trips this month and next in locales that include Asia, Africa, Western Europe, Australia, Egypt and Central America.
The college study abroad tours are part of the university’s Juniors Abroad program. Since 1987, the program has sent third- and fourth-year students on three-week overseas study trips led by professors. Excursions have reached every continent except Antarctica. George Fox pays transportation and program costs; students pay room and board. Each trip holds preparation classes during the spring semester.
George Fox is a national leader in study-abroad participation. Last year, 64 percent of the university’s traditional undergraduates reported studying abroad before graduation. According to data compiled by U.S. News & World Report magazine for its 2010 “America’s Best Colleges” issue, George Fox ranks No. 22 out of approximately 1,400 accredited institutions in the nation in percentage of students studying outside the country. George Fox also was among the top five Christian colleges in study abroad participation.
A brief description of this year’s Juniors Abroad trips:
Amsterdam to Paris: This trip is traveling to Amsterdam and Haarlem in Holland; Bruges and Brussels in Belgium; and Paris and World War II sites in Normandy, France. Students will tour chocolate factories and take a bicycle tour in Bruges; learn about the European Union in Brussels; tour Mont Saint Michel and visit historic WWII beaches in Normandy; and stop at the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and the Musee D’Orsay in Paris.
Australia: In Australia, students will start in Sydney and work their way 1,600 miles north toward the tropics. The trip is for those who love the outdoors, as it will include sailing, snorkeling, kayaking, white water rafting, swimming, hiking, riding scenic trains, and visiting eucalyptus (gum) forests, a pineapple plantation, mountain ranges, rain forests, ocean beaches and coral reefs.
China and Tibet: Students on this trip will experience a seven-city tour, which will include sites such as the Great Wall and the Forbidden City in Beijing, the French concession region in Shanghai, the Terra Cotta Warriors of Xian, and the “Roof of the World,” Lhasa, Tibet. There, they will see panoramic views of Mt. Everest and the Himalayas.
Costa Rica and Honduras: This study tour is focusing on the contrasts between the different cultures, ecosystems and rainforests of these countries. It is a trip of great contrasts, from lush tropical rainforests and jungles teeming with tropical flora and fauna to hot sunny beaches; from bright sunny days to steamy tropical downpours; and from sleepy laid-back villages with ancient pyramids and temples to bustling modern cities with all the comforts of modern life.
East Africa: This course will focus on the endangered wildlife of East Africa. Students will have opportunities to explore a variety of rich and distinctive ecosystems, such as jungles, tropical rainforests, tea plantations, savannas, and marine habitats. In particular, they will study the efforts to save the elephant from extinction due to poaching.
Egypt: This trip is focusing on providing foundational knowledge of the history and culture of Egypt. The team will explore the treasures of Egyptian history such as the Pyramids and the Sphinx, pharaoh’s tombs, temples, Valley of the Kings, the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, King Tut’s treasures, mummies and more. The trip will include a three-day cruise on the Nile River, a camel ride to the top of Mt. Sinai to watch the sunrise, and snorkeling in the Red Sea.
Italy/France: The purpose of this trip is to enhance students’ appreciation of the richness found in the history, arts, land and people of Italy and France, with a special emphasis given to the correspondence between historical events and the art produced during Classical, Medieval and Renaissance periods. Students will experience a 10-city tour, which will mingle sites such as the ruins of the Colosseum, the Imperial Forum and the Pantheon with the magnificent architecture of St. Mark’s Cathedral in Venice, Santa Maria del Fiori in Florence, and the medieval towns of Carcassonne and Sarlat in France.
Italy/Tunisia: The destinations for this course will be the backdrop for the study of classical civilizations in the Mediterranean, the heritage of Christianity and Islam in the region, and the modern nation-states of Italy and Tunisia. Students will visit Rome, the region around the Bay of Naples and the Amalfi coast, the island of Sicily, and the North African nation of Tunisia.
Rome to Berlin: This trip is designed to be a pilgrimage in the oldest sense of the word—a journey to special places for Christian faith in Europe. Students are taking time to linger at these places of special meaning in hopes that, like pilgrims of old, they receive a spiritual deepening. Stops include visits to St. Peter’s Cathedral and the Sistine Chapel in Rome, the faith community in Taize, France, and the cities of Geneva and Berlin.
Rome to Paris: This tour is highlighting the art, history, and architecture of medieval and Renaissance Europe. The group is visiting Rome, Pompeii, Florence, Tuscany, Salzburg and Paris. Highlights of the trip include the hillside villages along the Mediterranean Sea, a concentration camp known as Dachau, and the beaches of Normandy.
Ireland, England and Wales: This historical study trip will start with the life of the Irish, starting in medieval times. Students will explore the natural and geographical history of the Island with a trip to Dingle, the western most tip of Ireland where the Gaelic language is still spoken. Crossing the Irish Sea, the trip continues with exploration of the castles of North Wales, the countryside of the Cotswold, including Shakespeare’s Stratford and medieval Warwick castle. The trip ends in London.
Ethiopia: This course is an opportunity for George Fox nursing students to experience medical mission work in Ethiopia in both rural and urban settings. They will be working in collaboration with staff from SIM (Serving in Mission), and spend time in Addis Ababa, the capital city of Ethiopia, for one week. There they will hear from seasoned SIM missionaries about how they integrate faith and learning in their lives and within the Ethiopian culture.
For more information on the Juniors Abroad program, visit juniorsabroad.georgefox.edu.
George Fox University is ranked by Forbes as one of the top 100 colleges in the country and highest among Christian colleges. George Fox is the only Christian university in the Pacific Northwest classified by U.S. News & World Report as a national university. More than 3,300 students attend classes on the university’s campus in Newberg, Ore., and at teaching centers in Portland, Salem, and Redmond, Ore., and Boise, Idaho. George Fox offers bachelor’s degrees in more than 40 majors, degree-completion programs for working adults, five seminary degrees, and 12 master’s and doctoral degrees.
Juniors Abroad Director