This program has been designed to ensure that participating students:
- Deepen their knowledge and understanding of Islam, as well as Islam’s relationship to other world religions and the West, while fostering empathy, collaborative opportunities, and lasting friendships between students and citizens of the host country.
- Possess key contexts and knowledge needed to be able to act as global citizens on issues relevant to them in order to be of service to their fellow human beings at the international level.
- Gain a greater sense of personal strengths and areas of improvement in the areas of empathy, cultural competency, and leadership.
[Envoys] knows kids extremely well…they know how to be cool with them while still commanding authority and establishing ground rules…I was incredibly impressed with the protocols established and put in place by Envoys.Micah M., Traveling Faculty Friends Seminary Peru 2015
With its emphasis on empathy and general intelligence in planning, Envoys has quickly emerged as a premier global program provider. They are well worth the attention of any of our schools.Paul Miller Former Director of Global Initiatives,NAIS
Envoys was at the top of their game from start to finish. What initially interested me was their focus on curriculum during pre-departure meetings and the program itself. Envoys cares deeply about the experience of the participants and faculty. [They] constantly ask for constructive criticism and make changes when necessary.Joe Vogel, Executive Director Global Education Benchmark Group
Envoys carefully constructed an educational trip for students that purposefully engaged them to think, reflect, act, and enjoy. The travel logistics were always well-planned, and I had peace of mind knowing that my teen-aged daughter was in safe, responsible, and caring handsAlice T, Parent Deerfield South Korea, 2015
I could not have been more satisfied with the performance of Envoys throughout the entire process of planning and executing this trip. All Envoys staff demonstrated the utmost professionalism and dedication, as well as knowledge and competence. I am so glad that [we] chose to partner with Envoys!Rick S, Traveling Faculty Hingham Japan 2015
The team at Envoys did their very best to ensure that the the “i’s were dotted and the t’s were crossed.” The staff was also quick to respond to any and all questions that arose prior, during and after the trip. My husband and I greatly appreciated the time Envoys took to provide preparation tips as well the planned activity schedules to help make our child’s South African trip a safe and memorable adventure”Regina J, Parent Dalton South Africa 2014
We had an amazing program. It was a biology teacher’s dream and Felipe and his crew couldn’t have been more thorough and professional to work with. Thanks for all of your efforts to organize an unforgettable experience for us all.Gerry, Traveling Faculty LCC Colombia, 2016
As a parent I felt the experience was well orchestrated and managed by Envoys. As a participant my daughter loved the whole experience; it is something she will treasure for the rest of her lifeLinda T, Parent Hingham Japan 2015
I don’t think it is possible to pull a trip like the Amazon and the many activities that you directed without the sense of purpose you have, without your drive for experiential learning for teenagers. All our experiences with the envoys team were amazing!Angela, Traveling Faculty RoundSquare Colombia 2015
It was not only the good times with our friends or the relationships we built but how we were after we came back, returning to this agitated society with a new view of ourselves and not just our impact on the world, but the world’s impact on us.Gabriela, Student Deerfield Colombia, 2014
The individuals we worked with, without exception, were all professional, courteous, patient, and greatly attentive to detail. As stated above, Envoys is flexible and works hard to make sure that if you have custom aspects to a trip that you want to add, they will work hard to make it happen for you.Adam H, Faculty Belmont Hill Japan 2016
I can honestly say that this was the best 10 days of my entire life. I feel as though I have grown as a person, and that I have made lifelong connections. This experience changed my life, so thank you very much to the entire Envoys staff!
Eliza C, Student Hingham Japan 2015
Every single person working for Envoys is excellent and committed to the kids and their experience, not just during the trip, but before and after. We would recommend Envoys to anyone looking for a high quality and enriching summer experience.Amy G, Parent Envoys Malawi 2014 & 2015
The Envoys staff has been amazing. I have bonded with each of them in different ways and they made the trip to Colombia nicer that I expected. Envoys helped me open myself up to interacting with the locals wherever we traveled!Illeana G, Student Deerfield Colombia 2014
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 first-hand experience.Julia D, Student GEBG Colombia 2016
I was incredibly impressed by the care taken by Envoys. Before we even hit the ground, there was an emphasis on comprehending impact on our destination’s environment that I appreciated..Throughout the trip, our Envoys leaders made sure that we continued to be conscious of impact. That awareness of cause and effect is something that often gets lost when traveling, and Envoys did not allow it to. During this trip, there was never a moment I did not feel safe and cared for nor a moment where I did not feel I was learning something!Keylee S, Student Dalton South Africa 2014
“Many student groups participate in ‘Voluntourism’. This trip did not attempt that, but rather funneled the collective energy of each member into meaningful, mutually beneficial cultural interactions..Thank you so much for this unforgettable and transformational experience.Altana, Student Friends Seminary South Africa, 2016
The Envoys staff were very open about sharing their first-hand experiences, which was a game-changed in terms of learning about post-apartheid South Africa. Also, having everything planned to the T made me feel very safe. I knew that I was in good hands.Gio H, Student Friends Seminary South Africa 2016
The Envoys Staff were exceptionally committed to us and to the goals of our trip. They were thoughtful, kind, caring, friendly, with great sense of humor, yet serious in their connection to the ethos of professional development that was our trip’s purpose. I was struck over and over again by how they literally RAN to be in the right place to respond to any given situation.Constance, Traveling Faculty Friends Seminary Colombia 2016
Day 1-2 (Arrival)
Students catch their flight to Morocco, and arrive next day.
Our journey to Morocco with Envoys begins in the nation’s capital. After lunch, students start their tour of Morocco by visiting the famous Kasbah of the Oudayas, and learning about Morocco’s political history. Then, students will be welcomed into the homes of their Rabat host families, where they have dinner, and learn about Moroccan home life, culture, and customs by living them.
Day 3 (Rabat)
In the morning, students will see the Hassan Mosque and Tower complex, and the Royal Mausoleum. There, we will start our in country discussions on Islam and religion in Morocco, including the concept of the “Commander of the Faithful.” Then, passing by the royal palace, students will be taken to Parliament to meet with government officials to discuss Morocco’s strides as a country and challenges it faces today. Students are encouraged to begin thinking about topics they would like to research further. Students end the day in Rabat’s medina before returning to their host families.
Day 4 (Rabat)
On our third day in Morocco’s capital, we head to the UNESCO National Commission and receive a lecture on the impacts of migration and immigration on Morocco, Africa and the European Union. UN Officials will speak about how they view these challenges, and work to solve them. In the afternoon, students will head to Chellah, an expansive necropolis complex outside of Rabat that showcases different periods in the country’s great history. A farewell dinner with host families in the evening.
Day 5 (Tangier)
We leave the capital early and head north along the Atlantic Coast to Tangier, Europe’s gateway to Africa. Visiting the American Legation Museum and following the footsteps of writer Paul Bowles, students discover how profound the United States’ relationship with Morocco is. We visit the tomb of the great explorer Ibn Battuta to pay tribute and understand his role in world history, as well as St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church to complement conversations about religious minorities in a predominately Muslim country. We then explore the ancient Kasbah in the evening. We unpack the day over a delicious Moroccan dinner.
Day 6 (Tangier / Fnideq / Chefchaouen)
After enjoying mint tea and breakfast on the rooftop of a traditional riad, we continue our tour of Tangier and talk about the unique challenges of this port city situated just 30 miles from Europe. After lunch, we depart Tangier for Chefchaouen, a picturesque Moroccan town painted entirely blue. On the way, we will stop at the Spanish enclave of Cueta’s border to better understand migration, economic disparity, and opportunity from an African perspective; and the town of Fnideq for an opportunity for cultural exchange with peers. In Chefchaouen, we enjoy the Kasbah, mosque, and marketplace while learning about the historical impact the Jewish community had on the city. Overnight in Chefchaouen.
Day 7 (Fez)
The medieval Moroccan capital awaits! On our first day in Fez, students see Qarawiyyin University—the oldest university in the world. Then, we spend time at Bou Inania, a 14th Century religious college, as well as the great forts of the old city. We sit down with Muslim scholars, and learn about the city’s history and legacy of Islamic learning. Sunset dinner on a rooftop overlooking the city.
Day 8 (Fez)
Wake up to the call to prayer as it echoes through Fez’s old city at dawn. After breakfast, we visit a restored 17th Century synagogue, which reopened its doors in 2013, to continue discussions of religious coexistence in the Muslim world. We will meet with Moroccan Muslims who have worked to preserve Jewish heritage in their country. Afternoon trip to the ancient Roman ruins of Volubilis. Utilizing the ruins as an outdoor classroom and picnic spot, students unpack their experiences, and discuss themes in western, Judeo-Christian civilization and Islamic civilization, as well as their interactions across the Mediterranean Sea. Afterwards, students will split into groups to explore Fez’s meandering medina—hailed as the best-preserved old city in the Arab world and the largest car-free urban zone on the planet—with specific intentional educational goals to achieve during their exploration. Time will be allotted for the purchase of souvenirs, and to see other sites in and around the city students express interest in.
Day 9 (Marrakech)
We wake up early and head for Marrakech, Morocco. In Marrakech, students will stay in a traditional Moroccan riad with hundreds of years of history. Students receive a tour of the city. At nightfall, we will visit the Dhejmma, a renowned marketplace of food, spices, and wares in order to savor the flavors of Morocco. Students will learn how to prepare a traditional dish, and bring a piece of Morocco’s rich heritage into their homes.
Day 10 (Marrakech)
Students learn how the economy of a traditional marketplace works, and do an exercise in perspective taking in the grand market’s of Marrakech. After lunch, they will continue their tour of the city to discover just why Marrakech is so famous. In the evening, a lecture on the impact of international tourism on Marrakech.
Day 11 (Tiznit)
Students will wake up early and journey by bus to Tiznit a la the blues song “Long Road to Tiznit.” This pretty town, known as the door to the Sahara, is the sister city of Somerville, Massachusetts. We receive an official welcome to Tiznit and have the opportunity to speak with government officials and religious leaders there. Students discover spirituality in Islam—and aspects of syncretism in Islam—found in Morocco and other parts of Africa. In the evening, a night of cross-cultural collaboration at Espace Asrir.
Day 12 (Tiznit / Sahara Desert)
Students will stop at a Berber Cooperative that specializes in argan oil and sit down with the local population to learn from them about their way of life and changes to the country resulting from increased popularity of argan oil globally. Afterwards, grab your keffiyah and your canteens–We are heading into the Sahara—the largest desert in the world! Enjoy the sunset from desert dunes, while learning about desert life. Camp overnight in the desert under the stars.
Day 13 (Tiznit)
On our third day in Morocco’s south, students are welcomed into the classroom of fellow high school students for intercultural exchange. Students will then head to the homes of some of the Moroccan students for lunch and further exchange. Students also have the opportunity to see this city famous for its silver. Then it’s so long to the south as we head north to Casablanca in the evening. Overnight in Casablanca.
Day 14 (Casablanca)
On our last day in Morocco, we make a visit to the King Hassan II Mosque—the largest in Africa—and begin to wind our trip down there. After a stop at Rick’s Cafe Americain for a farewell lunch, it’s off to the airport to catch our flight back home. Now, say it with us in your best Humphrey Bogart voice, “Here’s lookin’ at you kid…”