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2017 Collaborative Programs
Colombia and South Korea

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The GEBG places great value on offering collaborative travel programs for students and faculty from member schools. The collaborative model brings together students from different schools to work together before, during, and after the travel experience. A set of foundational online courses establishes a common knowledge base, after which teams of students collaborate to conduct their own research and educate the group. Teachers from member schools have opportunities to integrate the program themes and content into their classroom curriculum and make alterations to program elements to best fit the enrolled students.

These programs epitomize the quality of programs GEBG members desire to offer their students—including extensive pre-departure preparation, student collaboration, and itineraries that will students to understand the complexity of development and take action in the global arena. GEBG Faculty Program Coordinators will co-lead the travel program and assist with coordinating the pre and post travel curriculum.

2017 Programs

Colombia: Peace in our time?

South Korea: A Cresting Wave?

In Colombia, participating member schools will examine ways to enact social change in a post-conflict environment. Students develop a basic understanding of the history of conflicts within Colombia through a series of curated videos, articles, and other media.

While in Colombia, we move from Bogota to the Sabana and end in Cartagena. Students will visit social entrepreneurs working in different sectors, and with a diverse range of communities around the country, learning about their models and shadowing their everyday operations. We facilitate students to engage with local actors from public and private arenas and learn how people from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds are working together to build (and rebuild) their national identity and develop a new social contract.

Peace in our Time
Solving inequality is one of the key challenges for the 21st century, and thus a critical focal area for GEBG schools. Colombia’s rapid return to stability provides the perfect context to explore this theme, as systemic inequalities within the nation threaten to disturb the newfound peace. We delve into the various public and private arenas by which people from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds are working together to build (and rebuild) their national identity and social contract.
Gran Colombia Redux
Colombia was named by the Economist Intelligence Unit in 2008 as one of the next generation of ‘tiger economies’, with a fast growing, diverse economy and a large population under 30. Economic growth, safety, and stability are on the rise in all corners of the country, and international visitors are joyously rediscovering the remarkable diversity and warmth of this nation. The geographic location and close political relationship to the United States ensures that Colombia will continue to rediscover its historical role as a regional leader.
Day 1 (Arrival)
International flights into Bogota

Days 2 – 5 (Bogota)
The capital of Colombia, Bogotá is located in the geographic center of the country on a vast plain at 2,600 meters above sea level. With eight million people from all corners of Colombia, the city is as diverse as the entire country.

While in-country, we explore the topic of innovations in education throughout Colombia, working in concert with the Volunteers Colombia organization. In coordination with the Ministry of Education, Volunteers Colombia has brought hundreds of professionals from English-speaking countries to serve assistant English teachers in high-need areas. We work with the leadership of the organization to create a needs assessment for current projects, examining future expansion opportunities and obstacles. We also engage with local teachers and students to learn about how the past history of violence has impacted families and individuals. Using precepts from the Narrative Four methodology, program participants learn to retell the stories that they have heard, building a deeper empathic connection.

Days 6 – 7 (The Sabana)

The Sabana is one of the richest agricultural regions of the country with hundreds of different small towns that preserve colonial style. Traveling around the Sabana provides a unique opportunity to understand the magic behind the traditions within the rural communities.

We learn about the traditions and culture of the region. Split into groups with chaperones, students work their way through the perfectly preserved colonial town of Villa de Leyva, interviewing locals and gathering information to share with their peers.

We continue on a short day trip to Raquira, the “Pottery Capital of Colombia”. The artisan culture in Boyacá represents a significant portion of the economic income of the area, and we trace the product line from beginning to end. Students will learn from a local artisan how to produce different types of products out of clay and natural fibers.

We end our time by visiting with communities in Boyaca and Cundinamarca, located north of the capital city. We visit local schools and community centers where we can embed ourselves into the community life and learn about their livelihoods. The communicative challenge of working with and learning from the local members provides a strong opportunity for students to develop humility and empathy for others.

Days 8 – 10 (Cartagena)

This remarkable city has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, with mazes of cobbled alleyways, enormous balconies shrouded in bougainvillea, and a series of doors that have to been seen to be believed. Cartagena is considered by many as the most beautiful city in Colombia. We move through the city at a relaxed pace, pausing at cafes and shops and reflecting on the remarkably different environments we have experienced in our short week in Colombia.

We visit the communities of Ararca and Santana in the island of Barú, located a few kilometers out of Cartagena. We foresee several opportunities to collaborate on a cultural exchange project with local schools and community centers that will provide an opportunity for both the Island community members and our students to learn about each other. We spend the afternoon at Tiempo de Juego, an afterschool program that works with low-income students and their families utilizing soccer as an avenue for educating for peace. Students learn about real development work by conducting a needs assessment at this not-for profit project. Also, they meet with the leaders of the program and the beneficiaries to get a first hand knowledge of the project.

On our last full day in the city we set off on a walking tour through the walled city of Cartagena talking to people along the way and discovering the informality that the ‘Costeño’ culture encompasses in their everyday lives.

Day 11 (Departure)
International flights home

This itinerary represents Envoys’ best projection of the trip. Alterations may be made in the months preceding departure to improve the quality of the program.

Head-Royce School
Global Programs Coordinator and MS Spanish Teacher/8th Grade Advisor

Christina Masson received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Brown University and her Masters degree in Spanish from Middlebury College. While an undergraduate, she studied abroad in Puebla, Mexico and earned her Masters while in Madrid, Spain. Christina is currently in her third year at Head-Royce School, where she has taught both middle and high school Spanish and has been an 8th and 9th grade advisor. This year, she stepped into the role of Global Education/Travel Coordinator and will help plan and coordinate the school’s educational travel programs. Christina has chaperoned outdoor education trips as well as a student trip to Israel and the GEBG Colombia trip last summer. Outside of school, she has traveled extensively throughout Europe and Latin America. In addition to travel, Christina is passionate about food, hiking, dance, and linguistics.

Students deepen their understanding of Korea’s remarkable economic journey in the post war period. We analyze the benefits and costs of this development to modern Korean society, thereby building a better understanding of the tension between cultural traditions and the forces of modernity within the country.

We witness this ongoing tension by drawing contrasts between Seoul’s urban spread, visits to artisan workshops, and day hikes in the nearby area. We also explore the various intricacies of Korean fashion and design with a visit to the famed Gangnam district as well as the massive underground Coex Mall. Along with a variety of experiential activities involving Korean cooking, dance, and music, students engage in regular observation and analysis exercises to better understand the representation, critique, and evolution of traditional values through the ongoing ‘Korean Wave’ of popular culture.

A Hermit No More
Far and away the per-capita leader in outbound international students, the site of the ‘Miracle on the Han’ has a wide network of academic, diplomatic and economic relationships. As China’s rise continues to heighten the geographic significance of the Korean peninsula, the dense web of connections results in a true global ‘hotspot’, whereby events taking place in South Korea ripple around the world.

Bellwether for Modern Asia
In 2002, the Korean soap opera Winter Sonata debuted on KBS, setting off a frenzy across Asia that continued unabated through to the meteoric YouTube rise of PSY’s Gangnam Style. For better or worse, the growing popularity of all things Korean, from fashion and film to music and cuisine, has made the Republic of Korea the preeminent conveyor of ‘modern Asian’ culture to the West.

The Price of Development
Having moved from the OECD list of recipients to donors of development aid, the Republic of Korea is a true success story of economic growth and industrialization. The country now stands as a global industrial powerhouse, known around the world for advances in shipbuilding, steelworking, and electronics. This climb, however, has created a mania for competitiveness that has given rise to elevated rates of depression, alcoholism, and suicide. As a post-industrial culture radically different than that of the United States, the exploration of South Korea is critical to understanding the true benefits and costs of economic growth.

Day 1 (Arrival)

International flights into Seoul.

Days 2 – 3 (Templestay) 
Located in the foothills of Naksan mountain in the heart of Seoul, this unique temple provides space for reflection to start our journey in Korea.

Designed to enhance the public’s understanding of Korean Buddhism, a typical temple stay program entails participation in ceremonial services and Zen meditation. Meals are taken in complete silence with no wasting of food.

Days 4 – 8 (Seoul)

South Korea’s capital and largest city, Seoul is constantly adapting, representing the cutting edge of modernity for urban life. The density of historical sites and cultural activities as well as the varied business, academic, and entertainment venues allows us to delve deeply into what it means to be Korean today.

We begin in the downtown Insadong area. With a mixture of street vendors, art galleries, teahouses, and vegetarian restaurants, Insadong is one of Seoul’s foremost havens for the arts. The nearby Hanok Village is a carefully preserved site that allows visitors to experience the atmosphere of the Joseon Dynasty, six centuries in the past.

We also travel to the lively Myeongdong area, which provides the perfect environment to observe and experience modern Korean fashion and youth culture. After K-pop dance classes and explorations of the area, we go to the world-famous Nanta show, a non-verbal performance of traditional Korean drumming (samulnori) intermixed with lively and entertaining cooking. The show involves acrobatics, magic tricks, comedy, and pantomime, with room for participation from audience members. Attending a KBS baseball game provides another  view of how modern-day Korea adopts (and adapts) practices from the “West.” Sports stand as one of the purest illustrations of how a populace comes together, and South Korea is no exception. We experience the unique joy of a Korean professional baseball game, replete with carefully orchestrated cheers and novel displays of fandom.

Finally, while in Seoul, we  have the unique opportunity to interact with a group of North Korean defectors studying English. Following a visit to the Demilitarized Zone, this person-to-person interaction allows for a deeper and more emotional understanding of the immense sadness surrounding the split of the Korean peninsula.

Day 9 (Departure)

International flights back home

This itinerary represents Envoys’ best projection of the trip. Alterations may be made in the months preceding departure to improve the quality of the program.

Hathaway Brown School
Seventh Grade History Teacher, Seventh Grade Dean

Bridgette Nadzam-Kasubick earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from The George Washington University in East Asian Studies and her Master of Education at John Carroll University. In her thirteenth year at Hathaway Brown, she teaches World Geography and other classes to middle school girls, namely Feng Shui and digital photography. She is also the seventh grade Dean of Students. She has traveled extensively with HB and as part of professional development groups such as the Goethe Institut and Korea Society. Mrs. Nadzam-Kasubick is active in planning and chaperoning student trips to places such as the Florida Keys (marine ecology), Germany, India, Cambodia, and China, co-advises the Junior Model United Nations team, and organizes and facilitates the National Geographic Bee for her school. Her passions include all things Korean, yoga, and photography.


Students who wish to be considered for the GEBG collaborative program must submit an application by following this link.

Student applicants must:

  1. Select the destination of interest and preferred departure date. Students applying to more than one program must submit a separate application.
  2. Submit brief (250-500 words) responses to the following questions:
    • What are your personal objectives for this program? What experiences do you hope to have?
    • Who do you look up to? What kind of person do you want to be in the future?
  3. Provide the name and email address for an adult reference

Applications must be electronically signed by the student and a parent/guardian prior to submission.

Accepted students will be notified no later than December 15th, 2017.

Limited spaces are available to take advantage of this tremendous opportunity for professional development. Along with the substantial discounts for traveling teachers, the GEBG provides two faculty scholarships covering land costs for each fully enrolled program.

Faculty who wish to be considered to travel on the GEBG program should submit an application before December 1st, 2017.

Beginning in mid-March of 2017, students build content knowledge through self-paced foundational courses given online. Instructors monitor progress, provide guidance, and facilitate dialogues around subject material. Collaborations with peers focus on research projects that have specific significance for the trip.
We encourage faculty involvement from every GEBG school! There are two main roles that faculty can take on to assist with collaborative programming:

GEBG Educators provide input on curriculum, activities, and travel options during the design phase, engage with students during preparatory courses, and integrate travel programs into their curriculum.

GEBG Travel Leaders commit to engage in pre-trip preparations and serve as an educational leader during the travel portion of the program.

South Korea
June 11th-June 20th (program full)
June 21st–June 30th

June 11th-June 21st
June 21st-July 1st

For each program, Envoys will block group flights from destinations in the US that best meet the needs of the registered students.

Regular registration (Ends December 1st, 2017)

  • South Korea
    • Students: $3,350+ airfare
    • Traveling Faculty: $2,850 + airfare
  • Colombia
    • Students: $2,950+ airfare
    • Traveling Faculty: $1,950 + airfare

Late registration (After December 1st,2017)

  • South Korea
    • Students: $3,500+ airfare
    • Traveling Faculty: $3,000 + airfare
  • Colombia
    • Students: $3,150+ airfare
    • Traveling Faculty: $2,150 + airfare
  • I feel like I have gained a great amount of knowledge about Colombia through a socio-economic perspective, understanding all of the changes that are occurring and all of the people who act as catalysts for those changes.

    Isabella, Student GEBG Colombia 2016
  • I learned a lot about Colombia, both pre conflict and post, not only in terms of the people, but the government as well. My goals were completely fulfilled, because we were able to interact with locals and interview companies to find out what they are doing to help Colombia further develop.

    Curtis, Student GEBG Colombia 2016
  • My goals were to learn about post-conflict Colombia and step out of my comfort zone. These were fulfilled each and every day through activities, reflections, and firsthand experience.

    Julia, Student GEBG Colombia 2016
  • My personal experience with this program was perfect! The great attitudes, connections, and differences made everyone amazing to be around!

    Jordyn, Student GEBG Colombia 2016
  • I loved how much I connected with the Colombian people. It made me really happy to understand people that are different than me and their kindness is infectious!

    Julia, Student GEBG Colombia 2016
  • I loved getting to experience different areas of Colombia and interact with many types of people, because it gave me a better understanding of the complexities of Colombian culture and society, especially in terms of post-conflict development.

    Lakshmi, Student GEBG Colombia 2016
  • The team bonding was a very special opportunity to get to know everyone–I will always cherish the friendships we established!

    Selina, Student GEBG Colombia 2016

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