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  • Locations: Berlin, Germany; Prague, Czech Republic; Vienna, Austria
  • Program Terms: Jan Term
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Program Description:

Explore the History and Culture of Central Europe - IDS 1142

January 8-19, 2019
Faculty Leader: Dr. Mohamed Esa
Here is a link to a previous JanTerm Trip I took to Central Europe with videos and many images:

Program Overview
Course Description
Explore the culture, politics and history of three central European countries: Germany, Czech Republic, and Austria. The participants will learn about current events and the history of these four countries, especially the history of Germany: during the Nazi time, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the aftermath of German unification.This study trip will offer students the opportunity to visit an important region in Central Europe. They will visit old, and historic German, Czech, and Austrian cities such as Berlin, capital of reunified Germany, Heidelberg, Germany's oldest university town ; Munich, Bavaria's most important city and the residence of the historic Wittelsbach family. Other stops wi
ll include Dachau, Germany's first concentration camp; Vienna, the city of music; Salzburg, the birthplace of the most famous Austrian musician, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Prague, where Mozart first conducted Don Giovanni.


Location and Itinerary
Highlighted Itinerary Activities
Jan 8 - Day 1:   Fly overnight to Germany
Jan 9 - Day 2:    Arrive in Berlin: Berlin Orientation
Jan 10 - Day 3:  Guided tour of Berlin: Brandenburg Gate, Remains of Berlin Wall, Checkpoint Charlie Museum

                            (Optional: Potsdam)
Jan 11 - Day 4:  Dresden • Prague: Take a guided tour of Dresden and Visit Zwinger Museum, Continue on to Prague
Jan 12 - Day 5:  Guided tour of Prague and St. Vitus Cathedral
Jan 13 - Day 6:  Prague to Vienna: Orientation tour of Vienna: Opera House, St. Stephen's Cathedral,

Jan 14 - Day 7:  Guided tour of Vienna: Visit Schönbrunn Palace
Jan 15 - Day 8:  Salzburg to Munich: Travel to Salzburg, Orientation tour of Salzburg: Old Town, Mozart's birthplace,
       Continue on to Munich
Jan 16 - Day 9:   Guided tour of Munich: Residenz, Marienplatz, Visit Dachau, Walking tour of Munich
Jan 17: Day 10:  Travel to Heidelberg via Neuschwanstein Castle in Southern Bavaria
Jan 18 - Day 11:  Guided tour of Heidelberg, Visit Heidelberg Castle with wine barrel and the old city.
Jan 19 - Days 12: Depart for home from Frankfurt

Housing and Meals
We will stay in standard 3-4 stars European hotels with private baths. Daily breakfast and dinner are included.

Course Objectives
  • Through visits to historical sites, the students will learn about the impact of the recent history of Central Europe, especially the Holocaust, the division of Germany (and Europe), the Berlin Wall and its impact on the Cold War, the European Union, especially Germany's role and more
  • Students will learn about the culture of these countries, especially the Arts and Music, through various visits to museums and the State Opera in Vienna
  • Student will gain a better understanding and appreciation of the role that minorities played and are still playing in Central Europe, mainly the Jewish community in Prague and Berlin and also the Turkish minority in Germany
  • Students will attain a better understanding of the political system in Europe in general and in Germany, Czech Republic, and Austria in particular.
Course Requirements
To receive credit for this trip, students must fulfill the following course requirements:
  1. Part 1: Active Participation in Trip (25% of final grade) You must attend all scheduled tours, lectures and meetings and take active part in conversations and discussions.
  2. Part 2: Choose one of the following alternatives and fulfill the requirements (75%):
  • Alternative 1: Create your own Blog: Your Blog must consist of (a) selected images that you have taken on the trip (a few images from each city we visit) (30%) and (b) at least 9 journal entries (5% each), 6 of which must be reflections about our visits to the 7 cities on our itinerary: Berlin, Dresden, Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Munich and Heidelberg. The first entry must be posted prior to our departure. In this entry, please describe in details why you have signed up for this trip and not another one, what you expect from the trip and what cities/ countries you are looking forward to seeing and why. Your last entry that is due upon your return to the USA is a final reflection on the entire trip: what did you like about the trip, which places, events, etc. and why.
  • Alternative 2: Journal and Photography:  This alternative consists of 2 parts:
  1. Journal (50%): You must write in a journal once a day (at least 10 entries) about what you saw and experienced on that day. Use your imagination; be creative and reflective. Each entry should be at least one page long. You can also draw pictures, add small souvenir items, cards, pictures, etc. The journal will be collected twice: in the middle of trip after our visit to Budapest and on the plane. Please buy a composition book and write your name on it.
  2. Photography (25%): Each student will take photographs for exhibit at McDaniel. Try to focus on something you like (castles, bridges, churches, doors, people, graffiti, Berlin, Dachau, etc.) and make this your project idea. You will choose 10 of your best pictures, enlarge them and put them into a poster collage. These poster collages will be exhibited at McDaniel in the spring semester. You can opt to do a PowerPoint slide show instead with explanations to the pictures.
  • Alternative 3: Video-Journal: Your video will consist of footage you will take during the trip, short interviews with select members of the group and also your own commentary and reflections. This is a project for 2-3 students who will have to meet with me before and during the trip so we can start planning for video and editing it after we have visited each city. I have video editing software on my computer and we would be able to start the editing process on the trip by adding titles, images, music, etc. (25% photography and video quality; 20% quality of interviews; 30% commentary).
$3,100 (Single Room Supplement: $489)
The price is based on at least 35 paying participants and it includes:
  • Round-trip airfare from Baltimore-Berlin and Frankfurt-Baltimore
  • 10 overnight stays in hotels with private bathrooms
  • Complete European breakfast and dinner daily
  • Tips for tour guide, various local guides and bus drivers
  • Travel insurance
  • Sightseeing tours led by local guides: Berlin • Prague • Vienna • Munich • Heidelberg
  • Daily lectures and debriefs led by Dr. Mohamed Esa
  • Visits to historic sites: Checkpoint Charlie Museum • The Holocaust Memorial in Berlin • Berlin Wall Memorial • Zwinger Museum • St. Vitus Cathedral, Golden lane and Charles Bridge • Schönbrunn Palace  • Mozart’s Birth Place • Dachau • Neuschwanstein • Castle Heidelberg Castle and largest wine barrel in the world, and more.
Not included in the price are:
  • Single Room Supplement ($489)
  • Transport to and from airport in Baltimore
  • All lunches and drinks
  • Optional tours
  • Concerts and visit to the Opera in Vienna
  • Evening transportations
How to Apply
  1. Send an e-mail to Dr. Mohamed Esa ( indicating your interest in the trip.
  2. Fill out the online application form by August 20. See link above.
  3. Pay the first part of the price of $1,600 by September 10. However, spaces are limited and will be filled on  a first-come, first-served basis. Therefore, make your first deposit ASAP. $300 is the nonrefundable fee if you cancel before September 24. No refunds will be issued after September 24.
  4. The rest of the trip cost MUST be paid by October 1.

Application Deadline
August 20.

First Payment
By September 10.

Final Payment:
October 1

This program is currently not accepting applications.