Global Engagement Courses by Division

Lower School

Every grade level in the Lower School (preschool-5th grade) studies the geography, customs, and culture of the world around them through authentic inquiry that is interwoven throughout various Project-Based Learning units during the school year. Students are exposed to opportunities in our community that help foster global understanding and empathy. This includes:

  • special guest speakers
  • international fairs
  • collaboration with cross-division language classes
  • making international friends
  • hearing about the cultural immersion and service trips taken by Middle and Upper School students

Middle School

Global Engagement courses and experiences help shape Middle School students’ way of perceiving the world, and they help our students expand their global IQ. While these areas are taught in specific courses and experiences, much of this work is overlapping and interdisciplinary throughout the Middle School curriculum. The AC Middle School experience is all about having the opportunity to try out new things and get a taste of different experiences.

Middle School is also when students have the opportunity to start learning about the Global Engagement Diploma Program, which requires students to participate meaningfully in service and cultural opportunities during their Upper School years. In preparation for this program, students at the Middle School level are encouraged to start thinking about the travel and service experiences available to them, as well as the languages they will commit to studying.


Upper School

In the Upper School, students have the opportunity to start the Global Engagement Diploma Program, which allows them to graduate with a Global Diploma in addition to their regular diploma. As part of the Global Engagement Diploma Program, certain courses at Allendale Columbia are available to students, and not only do they provide credit in History, Art, or as an elective, but they also serve to satisfy the Global Engagement requirement for a Global Engagement elective course. Courses will be approved by the Global Engagement Diploma team.

Examples of courses that have been counted toward this requirement include:

  • The Foundations of Cultures and Identities
  • History of the Modern Middle East 
  • Painting and WorldArt
  • World Music 
  • Cultural Identity Through Literature
  • Gender in Literature and Culture
  • Making an Impact: Globally

The Global Diploma program requires students to participate meaningfully in service and cultural opportunities both locally and abroad. Students are encouraged to apply during their 8th grade or 9th grade year for this exciting opportunity.


Learn More About the Center for Global Engagement