Skip to content

Programs : Brochure

This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options.
  • Locations: Aegina, Greece; Argos, Greece; Athens, Greece; Chania, Greece; Delphi, Greece; Gytheio, Greece; Heraklion, Greece; Kalabaka, Greece; Nafplion, Greece; Olympia, Greece; Piraeus, Greece; Sparta, Greece; Thessaloniki, Greece
  • Program Terms: Spring
  • Budget Sheets: Spring
  • Dates / Deadlines
Program Description:



  • 18 years of age or above
  • Good academic and disciplinary standing at Penn State
  • 2.5 cumulative GPA or better at the time of application review
  • Sophomore standing or above at the start of the program 
  • This program is only available to regularly enrolled Penn State undergraduate students.
  • Penn State students who successfully complete the Athens program and its prerequisites may be eligible to receive a minor in Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies (CAMS). 

Program Description 

In and Beyond the Great Classrooms of Athens

Athens is the cultural, industrial and political center of modern Greece. Ancient Athens is considered by many to be the fountainhead of Western civilization. The heart of the city, both ancient and modern, is the world-famous Acropolis. Nearby is the Agora, the ancient civic center and marketplace with its temple of Hephaistos and other important monuments. Also close to the Acropolis, and within walking distance of the Athens Centre, is the Plaka, the old quarter of the modern city. There, amidst Byzantine churches and early modern historical buildings are other monuments of the ancient city, like the Library of the Roman Emperor, Hadrian. Also not far from the Athens Centre are the National Gardens, the Parliament House, and the Panathenaikon Stadium, which was built in 330 BC for the Greater Panathenaic Festival and rebuilt centuries later to accommodate the first modern Olympic Games, held in 1896. Lycabettus Hill, with St. George's chapel at its summit, offers one of the best views of this wonderful city. The many museums, monuments, and scenic viewpoints in present-day Athens evoke memories of the masters of art and architecture, philosophy and drama who once walked its streets and who have made such important contributions to Western civilization.

The Athens Centre, located near the Acropolis and other major archaeological sites of the city, is headquarters for the Penn State Athens program. Founded in 1969 as the Athens Centre for Creative Arts, this Greek non-profit organization sponsors academic and cultural activities. It schedules programs for Athens residents throughout the year in the fields of Greek Studies, fine arts and performing arts, and since 1977 has offered courses in Modern Greek language to foreigners living and working in Athens. In addition to its work with Penn State, the Centre cooperates with several other US colleges and universities. For more information about this program, please visit the Athens Centre website.

Bucknell and Penn State Universities collaborate to offer this 90-day interdisciplinary program and alternate faculty. Penn State students who successfully complete the Athens program and its prerequisites may be eligible to receive a minor in Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies (CAMS). 



Spring 2025: February 1- April 30, 2025

Program Leaders

Program Leader Information

  • Bucknell and Penn State Universities collaborate to offer this 90-day interdisciplinary program and alternate faculty. 
  • For Spring 2025, Bucknell University Associate Professor of Political Science, Christina Xydias, will lead the program. 


Course Descriptions

All students will be enrolled in 4 or 5 courses for 12 to 15 total credits. Typically, history, archaeology, and culture courses are taught by local faculty on-site, and Penn State/Bucknell faculty will teach additional courses in their discipline.
Two of the courses are required of all students and then students have the option of selecting 2 or 3 additional courses from a list of options.

Courses for Spring 2025: 
  • REQUIRED - Archaeology of Ancient Greece - (3 credits, CAMS 499.2 / HIST 499.2 / ART HIST 499.1) Professor TBD
    • A survey of the major historical monuments and sites, from the prehistoric period to Classical times. In this course we visit key sites and museums in Attica, the Peloponnese, and central Greece to examine the art and archaeology of prehistoric and classical Greece in its original setting. Students will explore first-hand the celebrated monuments and masterpieces of the Minoan, Mycenaean and Greek civilizations and will study the changes from palatial Bronze Age society to the age of Greek city-states and its most important developments under Athenian democracy. As students acquaint themselves with the most influential landmarks in Greek art and architecture, they will take a critical and reflective look at their discoveries and re-evaluate the fundamental bases of Greek archaeology.
  • REQUIRED TO CHOOSE ONE OF TWO: From Rosy-fingered to Golden Dawn - (3 credits) OR Democracy in Theory and Practice - (3 credits) Professor Christina Xydias, Bucknell - 1 of 2 REQUIRED
    • From Rosy-fingered to Golden Dawn - (3 credits, CAMS 499.1 / HIST 499.1) Professor Christina Xydias, Bucknell
      • What is / who are Modern Greece and Greeks? The first section of this course covers the construction of modern Greece as an identity and as a political system. In order to understand the construction of modern Greece, we will examine the artistic and material ways in which Greek nationalists worked to bridge antiquity and modernity. Thus, as part of this section, we will read Book I of the Iliad and a tragedy (likely Antigone), and we will visit the National Historical Museum, among other possible destinations and resources. We will also examine works of art that reflect and deal with ancient themes and the weight of the Greek past. The second section will introduce students to the contemporary institutions and function of Greek politics, organized around a central paradox within democracies: what happens when voters freely support anti-system or non-democratic parties?
    • Democracy in Theory and Practice - (3 credits, CAMS 499.3) Professor Christina Xydias, Bucknell 
      • The first section of the course will address the development of democracy in ancient Athens from Solon through Perikles, with an overture to the 4th century. Texts and sites include: a selection of Solon’s poems, and the story of Solon from Herodotus; Kleisthenes’ reforms of 507/6 BCE. In the second section, we consider questions of inclusion/exclusion. Classical elements will include visits to the Pnyx, the site of the ancient Assembly, and discussion of enfranchisement across wealth categories. Contemporary issues will include asylum processes and refugee experiences, contrasting legal theories regarding normative rights to asylum with these theories’ implementation in practice. The third section addresses elections and protest, exploring the potential and limitations for elections to assure voters’ opportunities for holding political leaders accountable. Looking at antiquity, we will consider role(s) of the aristocracy and selection mechanisms for magistrates. We will then consider contemporary political questions, such as: What does it mean for voting to be compulsory, as it is in Greece? 
  • Athletics and Competition in Ancient Greek Society - (3 credits, CAMS 499.4 / KINES 499) Professor TBD
    • Exploring the emergence and evolution of athletic competitions and spectacles from the Bronze Age through Late Antiquity, this course draws on a variety of disciplines, from history and archaeology to modern sports studies. The course will examine the role of games and spectacles within broader social, political, religious, cultural, and intellectual contexts, as well as their significance in the daily lives of the ancients. In addition to classroom lectures and discussions, field trips to archaeological sites and museums (Olympia, Delphi, and others) will provide opportunities for interpretation of physical evidence.
  • Greece: Culture and Environment - (3 credits, CAMS 199.1) Professor TBD
    • In the context of major events of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries that continue to shape Greek life and culture, this course will expose students to the many issues Greeks are presently facing in relation to migration, economy, environment, tourism, and the urban/rural split. The course will be built around a an introduction to modern history followed by a series of guest lectures and field trips, as well as the opportunity for volunteer service with the refugee community. 
  • Beginning Modern Greek - (3 credits, CAMS 99) Professor TBD
    • In this intensive introduction to spoken modern Greek, students will learn to use the language in their daily lives, coming to a deeper and more complex understanding of the people and culture of Greece along the way.
  • Second semester introductory Ancient Greek - (3 credits, GREEK 199) Professor TBD
    • Introduction to Ancient Greek, offered as needed by beginning or intermediate ancient Greek students.
  • Advanced reading in ancient Greek - (3 credits, GREEK 499) Professor TBD
    • Reading in Greek prose authors, offered as needed by advanced ancient Greek students.

Course Selection

Students are required to take the prescribed courses listed above as participants on the program. The Education Abroad Office will register you for these courses. To determine how these courses will fit into your degree requirements, you will need to work with your academic adviser. Suggested tips:
  • Research courses offered on your program
  • Meet with your academic adviser to discuss potential courses abroad and your degree requirements.
  • Complete your Course Selection Questionnaire in the ‘Post-Decision’ section of your application to choose the courses you want from the program options.

Academic Policies

  • You must enroll in a minimum number of 12 credits and a maximum number of 15 credits
  • You cannot take any courses abroad on a Pass/Fail basis
  • If you are studying abroad in your final semester at Penn State, please note that Penn State may not receive your grades in time for graduation

Housing and Meals



Housing in Athens is coordinated by the Athens Centre staff. You will live in a private apartment a few blocks from classroom facilities, in the residential neighborhood of Pangrati, about a mile from the center of the city and from the Acropolis. The apartments are one-room spacious studios, furnished simply with two or three single beds, two or three desks and chairs, an eating table and chairs, a kitchenette with fridge and stove, and a private bathroom. All the rooms have WiFi, air-conditioning, and an overhead fan. 

While on field trips, you will be housed near the trip sites.


You will be responsible for providing your own meals. Grocery shops, bakeries, and other stores are in a nearby neighborhood. 

Costs and Funding

Program Costs

Spring Costs

For more information on program costs, please be sure to review the budget sheet. These budget sheets include information on costs that are billable to the bursar bill, as well as estimated additional costs. Costs vary by program, so it is important to review this information carefully.

Please note that tuition rates may vary depending on major and class standing.


The Education Abroad Office awards a number of grants and scholarships to students who participate in an education abroad program through Penn State Global. The application for the scholarships awarded through the Education Abroad Office is included with your program application. Eligibility is based on academic merit and/or financial need. You must have a current FAFSA on file to be awarded. There are additional scholarship opportunities through our partner universities, Penn State Academic Departments, and other sources. To view a full list of scholarships, eligibility requirements, and deadlines visit Funding Study Abroad.

Students accepted to this program who are majoring or minoring in Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies are eligible to apply to the Department of CAMS for travel subventions. Contact the Head of the Department of CAMS.

Student Aid

Penn State students who plan to study on a Penn State approved program can use most forms of financial aid towards the cost of the program. Exceptions include work-study awards and some athletic scholarships. If you have specific questions regarding your aid awards, contact the Penn State Office of Student Aid.

Withdrawal & Refund Policy

Withdrawal and refund details are dependent on the timing and reason for your withdrawal from a Penn State Education Abroad Program. For specific details and steps on how to withdraw, read the Education Abroad Policies.

After Commitment

Once a student has committed to a Penn State Education Abroad program, they are financially responsible for any fees incurred on their behalf. Therefore, if a student plans to withdraw from a program it is their responsibility to immediately notify the Education Abroad office, in writing; email is preferred.

Regardless of the timing or reason for the withdrawal, the student will be responsible for paying the Education Abroad Administrative Fees. For faculty-led freestanding programs, there is a specific withdrawal penalty schedule. 

Education Abroad makes every attempt at keeping the program and administrative costs to a minimum. However, when you commit to participating in a program, Education Abroad begins to make financial commitments on your behalf. In case of withdrawal, the following fees will be charged to your Bursar account

  • Upon Commitment - 90 Days Prior to Departure: 25% Program Fee + EA Admin Fee 

  • 30 - 89 Days Prior to Departure: 50% Program Fee + EA Admin Fee 

  • 29 Days - Departure Date: 100% Program Fee + EA Admin Fee

Following the start of the summer semester, any adjustment of tuition charges will be made according to the Tuition Adjustment Schedule as determined by the Office of the Bursar. More information can be found on the University Senate Policy on Withdrawal and Leave of Absence.

After the Start of the Program

If a student withdraws after the start of a program, any adjustment of Penn State tuition charges will be made according to the Tuition Adjustment Schedule as determined by the Office of the Bursar. Students may be responsible for up to 100% of program costs. In most cases, partial credit cannot be awarded for leaving a program before its successful completion.

For additional information on withdrawal policies, separate and apart from financial consequences, please consult the University Senate Policy on Withdrawal and Leave of Absence.

Life Abroad

General Information

Studying abroad can be one of the most exciting and transformative experiences of your college career. It is an opportunity to develop independence, build cross-cultural competencies, grow as a person, and enhance your academic program. Entering a new culture can be challenging for everyone. You may ask yourself: is this the right country for me? What are their cultural norms? How will my identity be perceived there? What can I do to prepare for this experience? What will my daily life be like? Below are resources to help you answer these questions.

Accessibility Considerations

Penn State Education Abroad works closely with campus resources and our partner institutions around the world to ensure that students of all abilities reach their goal of studying abroad. While we cannot guarantee the accessibility of all program sites and locations, specific accommodations may be arranged on an individual basis. If you have accommodation needs or further questions please consult with the Student Disability Resources office and your Education Abroad Adviser. Additional resources are available through the Penn State Global Website. Disability information will not be used during the admissions process, but rather is meant to provide students with resources to help in planning a successful experience abroad.

Gender and LGBTQA Considerations 

There are dramatic and subtle differences in how gender, identity, sexual expression, and sexual health are perceived in different countries. Before going abroad, it is important that you research the specific country or countries you will be visiting and have a full understanding of their cultural norms. Below are some resources to help you with that research and provide guidance for your life abroad.

Race, Ethnicity, and Faith Considerations 

When choosing a study abroad location and preparing for your travels, you will want to be mindful of how your experience will be different than what you are used to in the United States. Your racial, ethnic, and spiritual identities may be interacted with and labeled by others differently than what you expect. Here are resources to help you prepare for these differences.

Non-U.S. Citizens

It is possible for non-U.S. Citizens to study abroad through Penn State. To do so successfully, you must plan early because this process may involve obtaining visas and other governmental procedures. Check with your DISSA Adviser prior to committing to a study abroad program and speak with your Education Abroad Adviser for specific information on the host country. If you plan on traveling to other countries during your study abroad experience, you will need to research and make plans to adhere to immigration policies for all of the countries that you plan to travel to and through. You are responsible for applying for visas for all applicable countries on your own. Advisers in the Education Abroad office cannot apply for your visa for you. Additional information may be available through your country's embassy and the consulate for your study abroad country.

Next Steps

Steps to Study Abroad

The planning stages outlined on the Penn State Global website will help you have the best study abroad experience possible. We recommend that you begin this process at least one year prior to the semester you plan on studying abroad. Visit the Steps to Study Abroad section of the Penn State Global website for more details.

How to Apply

Click the “Apply Now” button on this page to get started!

Application procedures can vary by program. Students should consult the application instructions available within each application. For more information, see the Application Process section of the Penn State Global website.


You must apply to this program by the Penn State deadline. For a list of deadlines visit the Application Process page of the Penn State Global website.

Contact Education Abroad

If you have general questions about Education Abroad opportunities at Penn State, please email

Peer Advisers

Education Abroad Peer Advisers are Penn State study abroad returnees who advise students on education abroad opportunities at Penn State. Each Peer Adviser can explain program options, give an overview of the study abroad process, as well as provide information about their experience abroad. Peer Advisers have walk-in hours in Boucke Building during the fall and spring semester when classes are in session. For more information, visit the Education Abroad Peer Adviser website.

Education Abroad Advisers

Education Abroad Advisers can provide information about courses, support services, application processes, housing details, program costs, cultural expectations, pre-departure requirements, and much more. For more information about how to meet with an Education Abroad Adviser, please visit the Penn State Global website.

Social Media

Facebook   Instagram   Twitter   Youtube

For information about upcoming events, scholarship opportunities, deadlines, and much more visit the Global Programs Events Calendar and follow us on social media!

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2024 09/10/2023
Rolling Admission 02/01/2024 04/30/2024
NOTE: Start date marks arrival in host country. End date marks departure from program housing.
Spring 2025 09/10/2024 ** Rolling Admission 02/01/2025 04/30/2025

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Students will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed