Travel Dates: July 12 - July 31, 2018 Program Dates: July 16 - July 27, 2018

Director: Steve Merkel-Hess (contact)

Join us for two weeks in Vanadzor, Armenia for the third year of this English-language program for middle and high school students. Armenians are warm and welcoming, especially to Americans. You will have the most fulfilling and rewarding teaching experience of your life, with enthusiastic, talented, and friendly students. Armenia is an ancient culture that has survived multiple conquests and is still recovering from the collapse of the Soviet Union.

You will be treated like a visiting celebrity. Vanadzor is a city of about 70,000, but you will be recognized in the markets and restaurants and on the streets. The students will be the most motivated and compelling you have ever worked with. Armenia is having hard times economically and learning English is seen as an enhancement for learning opportunities and future job skills. You will make life-long friends with the students, the university student helpers, and the visiting local English teachers.

The teachers' housing is within easy walking distance to the school building, local attractions within Vanadzor, and markets and restaurants. Breakfast and lunch are provided. For the evening meal you are on your own. Restaurants are numerous and inexpensive and fruit and vegetable markets are abundant and inexpensive. During the weekend days the local coordinator will set up day trips to local attractions.

The teaching schedule is well-organized and optimizes spoken and written English through teacher-led classroom lessons, as well as activities such as singing and dancing, observations of American culture, and oral literature. The students are ages 12 - 17 and a majority are competent in English. Class size is 12 to 15 students. Plan to fly in to Yerevan. The local coordinator will arrange mini-bus transportation from Yerevan to Vanadzor.

Program Director

Steve Merkel-Hess

(319) 512-8176

Steve Merkel-Hess has been with the Armenia program since its beginning in 2016. Steve taught elementary and junior high in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Iowa City, Iowa, for 35 years. After retirement he taught junior high and high school for four years at international schools in Egypt, Japan, and Sudan. He joined WIESCO in 2014 as a teacher at our Siauliai, Lithuania program. He enjoys travel and photography.

Get a glimpse into the Armenia program