Multicultural and Global Education
Learning Across Cultures
The MHS Multicultural and Global Education program’s goal is to grow awareness through experiences. Students are exposed to people and cultures of all types in the classroom. We offer all MHS high schoolers the chance to travel across the world. We seek to expand our students’ awareness of and empathy for others through service. This learning prepares MHS students for success in today’s global workforce.
Creating Global Thinkers
Elevating global awareness and understanding is a high priority at MHS and is highlighted out in our 2020 Vision Strategic Plan. Leadership and character growth come from this learning. Besides aligning with our Sacred Values, these traits are prized in today’s workforce.
In the Classroom
Global interdependence brings responsibility and opportunities. We want students to recognize this. One way is by working global lessons into all levels of student curriculum, pre-K through 12th grade.
As a school, we adopted two resources to help us align classroom multicultural and global education experiences: Asia Society Global Competence Standards and UN Sustainable Development Goals. Learning is intentional and oftentimes focused on solving global problems in the local community. Learn more about education in each MHS division.
Gaining New Skills
Multicultural experiences create global thinkers with personal skills and values. They become prepared for active citizenship. They achieve career success in our globally connected world. We see many important leadership skills emerge through this exposure, including:
- Civic responsibility
- Ethics and empathy
- Working together
- A better knowledge of themselves, others, and the systems in which they live
Types of Travel Offered
Each year, Milton Hershey School coordinates three all-expenses-paid student trips abroad for students in 9th through 12th grade. The Multicultural and Global Education program supports the entire experience both financially and logistically.
MHS offers three different types of trips. Read about the different themes and their learning goals.
These study abroad experiences are educationally focused. They are designed to help MHS students see as many cultures as possible. Students tour multiple cities. They visit historic attractions that coincide with an educational theme.
STORY SHOWCASE: WWII Intensive in England and France
In November 2018, a group of 25 students and four staff members took a nine-day educational trip to England and France. They immersed themselves in new cultures. They learned about the history of World War II. And, they heard about the impact this war had on these two countries. The group visited several museums and monuments, including:
- The Imperial War Museum
- Churchill War Rooms
- Bletchley Park
- Les Invalides
- The Champs-Élysées
These trips are reserved for foreign language students. During language immersion trips, students use their language in a native-speaking country. They work to reinforce their academic studies.
STORY SHOWCASE: Costa Rica Language Learning
In the spring of 2019, 24 high school students and four staff members traveled to Costa Rica. The focus of their trip was language immersion. On this trip, students:
- Practiced speaking Spanish
- Learned how to cook traditional meals
- Interacted with locals
- Gained a greater understanding of the culture
Each day focused on a different aspect of Costa Rican life. Students and chaperones traveled to many regions of the country, including:
- Guanacaste to learn about entrepreneurial spirit
- The Arenal region to study animals, plants, and fungi
- The Sarapiqui region to experience pura vida (“pure life”) living
- San José to learn the country’s history and visit a pineapple plantation
These trips are similar to academic tours, with students touring various cities. The main difference is that they end with a global, student-centered conference. Students have the opportunity to:
- Hear from globally known speakers
- Attend expert-led workshops
- Apply design thinking skills in a group setting to solve real-world challenges
STORY SHOWCASE: Global Leadership Summit in Europe
During the summer, 23 students and four staff members traveled through Switzerland and Austria. The focus of their 12-day trip was educational. They attended a Global Leadership Summit in Davos, Switzerland.
- At the summit, students were able to learn in many ways, including:
- Attending expert-led workshops
- Hearing from world-renowned speakers how society communicates best
- Collaborate with 1,000+ students from around the world.
Following the summit, students explored famous landmarks across Austria and Switzerland.
See Our Students Seeing the World
When Lester, a junior at MHS, visited Peru on a Multicultural and Global Education program trip, he became more empathic. He gained a better understanding of the Peruvian people and was able to grow both an individual and as a global citizen.
When 17 MHS students and six staff members traveled to the African nation of Ghana, they were each impacted. Hear all about what they experienced and learned about the country and its ties to the Hershey region through cocoa production.
MHS Global Travel By the Numbers
Recently, students traveled to Iceland, Ghana, Costa Rica, and several European countries. Students gain experience and perspective through traveling. They are empowered academically, socially, and emotionally.
- 270 high school students have traveled through the program since it began in 2015
- 65% increase in 2017-18 from the previous year (in the number of students who traveled through the program, with addition of domestic trips)
Students have visited 20 countries, including:
- Costa Rica
- Czech Republic
- United Kingdom
Learning Through Giving
Milton and Catherine Hershey created a rich tradition of service that resonates with students and alumni more than 100 years later. Our students learn how important it is to live a life of purpose and take care of others.
MHS students logged 1,300 total hours of local community service in 2017-18. Forty-nine students volunteered for domestic service learning in Fayette County, Pennsylvania. This is one of the poorest rural areas in our state. Students gave back by:
- Working with the local food bank
- Leading academic programming
- Contributing to beautification projects