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Lifelong Learners Give Grandson a Summer to Cherish Together

Written by: Owen Crean (Student)

It was the year 2000, and I was in 3rd grade.  At the time my class was actively engaged in following my grandparents’ travels as they were participating in the program “Semester at Sea.”  We traced the countries that they visited on a map and received small gifts and items that they sent to us in the mail.  My extremely generous grandparents, Dennis and Marie Crean, set this up for my class so that we could learn about the world and various different cultures.  At the time it was very interesting, but I wasn’t completely aware of the incredible nature of the program.  Upon their return, I looked at pictures and heard stories of their unbelievable experience.  At this point, I knew Semester at Sea was a program that I would someday love to be a part of.

In January of this year, my grandparents told me that they were planning on going on the Semester at Sea Summer 2011 program as “lifelong learners.”  Being veterans of the program, they were preparing for their third voyage with Semester at Sea (1992, 2000, 2011).  At this point, they presented me with an offer of a lifetime.  They invited me to join them on the Summer 2011 voyage!  Delighted and surprised, I immediately accepted their offer.  After all, how could I turn down traveling the Mediterranean while receiving a great education and spending time with my grandparents?


When I was fifteen my grandparents took me on a trip to Italy, so I knew that traveling with them would be fun, regardless of the destination.  The fact that it would be with Semester at Sea was just a bonus.

After being on the ship for only a couple of weeks, the program has exceeded my expectations.  I have had a wonderful time meeting new people, learning new things, and spending time with my grandparents.  The knowledge that I have gained from the program and my grandparents is unparalleled.  I even got to help celebrate their 49th anniversary on the ship!

I couldn’t be more thankful for the experiences that my grandparents and Semester at Sea have provided for me.  The knowledge that I will carry on for the rest of my life is something that I could never have attained without such great people.





  • Life at Sea

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