In 2008 a summer institute providing an overview of the Middle East was held. From June 1st to June 6th, the Center for Middle Eastern Studies offered 14 elementary and secondary teachers and 12 high school students the opportunity to participate in parallel programs of an intensive summer institute to learn more about the Middle East. Teachers received 45 hours of professional development credit or 3 UA graduate credits (in Language, Reading , and Culture through the Department of Education).
Students received 3 undergraduate credits in Near Eastern Studies. Sessions on modern Middle Eastern history, geography, literature, women's issues, art, culture, religion, and languages were offered as well as teachers' seminars to discuss classroom applications of the material. Evening activities included movie screenings, musical performances, and other cultural activities.