Date Published: Sep. 29, 2017
Alumni of the UD Rome program universally attest that the Greece trip is one of the
hallmarks of the Rome semester. Taking place just short of the semester’s half-way
point, the ten-day trip to the country known by UD students as the birthplace of Western
culture is, for many students, the point at which the Core curriculum – especially
the classes taken in Rome – come together in synthesis. From battlegrounds to museums
to theaters, the trip is a progression through tangible encounters with the subjects
of UD’s classes.
Beginning in the archaeological site of Dodona, where Greeks used to flock to hear
their fates told by priests and oracles, Dr. Peter Hatlie encouraged students to keep
in mind throughout the trip the Grecian pursuit of human excellence, as well as the
awareness of the sublime found in the striking landscape of the land where philosophy
Students soon saw an exemplary union between human achievement and natural beauty
at the monasteries of Meteora, abbeys built at staggering heights atop sheer rock
formations where monks once ascended and descended in baskets hoisted by ropes.
From Meteora, the class traveled to Delphi, stopping briefly at the battlefield of
Thermopylae, where the 300 Spartans had their famous last stand against the Persians.
In Delphi, students enjoyed the quiet town overlooking a valley filled with thousands
of olive trees. There they visited the Oracle of Delphi, which they already encountered
in Literary Tradition III in several Greek tragedies. Afterwards, students visited the Archaeological Museum of Delphi, where they encountered
several works covered in depth in their Art and Architecture course.
Following Delphi, the class arrived in Athens, the birthplace of democracy, and did
a whirlwind tour of sites such as the Areopagus, the Agora, the Theater of Dionysus,
and the Acropolis with the legendary Parthenon.
The students then had a relaxing couple of days in the seaside town of Nafplion, where
they stayed in hotels right by the water. From Nafplion, the class took a day trip
to Mycenae, to see the remains of the palace of Agamemnon.
The Greece trip concluded in Olympia, original home of the Olympic games. Students
raced each other on the original race track on the archaeological site.
In addition to the academic enrichment of the trip, students also find the Greece
trip to be a time where their class identity takes shape and relationships – both
among each other and with the faculty and staff – strengthen.