The Odyssey programs of the Department of Global Studies and Geography provide unique and exciting opportunities for students to discover both the world and themselves through study and travel abroad with Hofstra faculty. Since 1992 Hofstra University has been developing this signature Odyssey model recognizing that university learning is not only an educational journey but also a journey of self-transformation.
An emphasis on experiential learning is central to the Odyssey programs. This model embodies the view that people often learn most effectively within small-scale communities that are intellectually challenging and that provide first-hand experience of the subject matter. These programs are designed to create an academic community in which ideas are seen as interconnected and where people explore the relevance of these ideas to the world. Recognizing the ways in which people are interrelated helps students learn how to solve problems and cooperate as team members. In this model, learning is not solely a means of undertaking course work toward a degree but is also seen as a lifelong pursuit— an end in itself, a way of being, and a process of living.
Students who participate in the Odyssey programs must have the maturity, adaptability, cultural curiosity and initiative to be able to travel, live and study in close quarters with others. With an attitude of respect and cooperation, the group co-creates a mobile learning community that not only comes to know and appreciate other cultures, but also fosters the crucial skills and experiences that lie at the heart of a liberal arts education.
Students who wish to participate in these Odyssey programs must be in good academic standing and have at least a 2.5 GPA. They must also be in good financial standing. Student also need to confer with their respective academic advisors in order to determine the way in which the Odyssey programs can complement their other requirements.
Financial aid received by eligible Hofstra students may be used to pay for tuition, room and board.
For more information about the Odyssey programs, please contact Linda Longmire, Professor of Global Studies and Director of Odyssey Programs, in Roosevelt 209B or at (516) 463-5828, or by e-mail.
The European Odyssey
The European Odyssey is a semester-length study abroad program housed in the Department of Global Studies and Geography that is open to all undergraduate students at Hofstra... | more |
The Mexican Odyssey
Periodically during the January intersession Hofstra offers the Mexican Odyssey, entitled "Beyond the Borders: A Journey to the Heart of Mexico." Faculty lead a group of a dozen students on a three week learning adventure throughout south central Mexico, including stops in Mexico City, Puebla, Oaxaca, Palenque, San Cristobal de las Casas and Puerto Angel. Students study Mexico's diverse past incorporaing the major indigenous civilizations of the Aztecs, Maya, Olmecs and Zapotecs. Explorations of many of Mexico's archeological treasures, including the spectacular pre-Hispanic ruins of Teotihuacan, Cholula, Palenque, Yaxchilan, and Monte Alban, complement the course work.
The program also focuses on contemporary Mexican political, economic and social issues with particular emphasis on the effects on Mexico of NAFTA and globalization. The group interviews scholars, politicians, journalists and citizens in order to understand such recent events as the Zapatista uprising in the state of Chiapas and the complex electoral politics of Mexico. Additionally, students visit some of Mexico's great museums exhibiting the work of painters such as Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera and Rufino Tamayo.
The Italian Odyssey
The Italian Odyssey explores the cultural and intellectual history of Italy in an exciting program held during June in Summer Session I. The six-credit Italian Odyssey Program is composed of two three-credit Hofstra University courses (both taught in English). The course offerings vary but they all address the challenges of globalization, including questions about religion, changing identities, and cultural transformation. The learning adventure begins in the picturesque town of Sorrento, Italy, located on western Italy’s Amalfi Coast at the southern tip of the Bay of Naples. The stay in Sorrento includes excursions to the Greek ruins at Paestum, the buried cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum (Ercolano), and the wondrous island of Capri. Next, the Italian Odyssey moves on to the eternal city of Rome, where it explores the crossroads of the ancient, medieval and Renaissance ages, visiting the Coliseum, the Pantheon and Trevi Fountain, as well as St. Peter’s Basilica and the Vatican Museums. The Program concludes in Florence with an exploration of Renaissance ideas, art, and architecture.