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Crete Study Abroad

Crete, an island at the southernmost part of Greece, serves as a connecting link between the East and West. The so-called "bride" of the Mediterranean, Crete is a cultural crossroad that connects Greece to Africa on the south, Asia on the east, and Europe on the northwest. It is the island that gave birth to the Minoan Civilization and the Mediterranean diet, a world where an eco-friendly, sustainable life is witnessed daily.

The study abroad program in Crete is open to all Drexel students scheduled for class during the summer term. This 12-credit program consists of four 3-credit courses. The courses are all hybrid courses, which means they take place partially in person and partially online. The program offers students the opportunity to dive into the Greek experience through an empirical study of its rich, multifaceted culture as it is expressed today on the island of Crete.


Program Structure

The program is divided into three distinct parts:

  1. Pre-program meetings and coursework Meetings take place during the week between spring and summer terms. Students should make sure that they are in Philadelphia and available at this time. Until students leave for Crete in June, they will continue doing coursework and research in preparation for their intensive study abroad experience in Crete.
  2. Four-week, on-site intensive coursework in Crete, Greece
  3. Post-program reflective coursework and research writing done online

About the Curriculum

The program includes four required courses (3 credits each). These courses explore Greek culture through its rich and distinct archaeology, history, visual art sources and the poetry, fiction, memoirs and letters of people who have visited, studied or even lived on the island. Students are guided through the techniques of participant observation as an ethnographic research method and are urged to apply these techniques. While in Crete, students selectively attend festivals, rituals, family, household, village and city customs and practices, as these are all valuable mechanisms for learning about Greek culture. Field trips have been integrated into the course requirements and offer students wide exposure to Eastern Mediterranean history, culture, traditions and society.

Courses (All required; 3 credits each)

  • ANTH 380: Crete Through the Looking Glass
  • GREC 380: Greek and Cretan History, Economy and Society
  • IAS 360: Cretan Civilization: Unraveling Ariadne's Thread
  • LANG 180: Communicate in Greek: Philoxenia

Courses are conducted in English and count toward the completion of the minor in Greek Studies. Because the best way to approach a culture is through a study of its language, the curriculum includes a course on basic modern Greek communication skills. While in Crete, guest lecturers, film showings, conversation tables, day trips and major site visits complement classroom meetings and enrich the interdisciplinary nature of the program. There will be optional trips around the island (for example to UNESCO and NATURA sites) as well as to the volcanic island of Santorini and/or Athens. In these cases, extra fees will apply.


Sample Payment Schedule

2010 Payment Schedule for $2800 program fee* ($1800 less than summer 2009!)

  • With application: $50 non-refundable application fee + $1,000 deposit (only refundable if not accepted into the program)
  • $1,000 non-refundable payment: within 2 weeks of acceptance, but no later than April 30, 2010
  • $800 non-refundable payment: No later than May 14, 2010. FEE REDUCED TO $600 due to rising Dollar/falling Euro class

* The fees and schedule listed above are to be used as an example only, as rates change yearly. All payments are non-refundable unless students are not accepted into the program or the program is cancelled. Checks should be made payable to “Drexel University.” The program fee covers the cost of housing, some meals (breakfast and dinner), excursion and entrance fees for field trip sites. Students are responsible for their regular Drexel tuition, airfare to Heraklion, lunch and spending money. Internet is available at a nearby Internet café.


For more information, please contact the Study Abroad office at 215.571.3558, or studyabroad@drexel.edu, or Maria Hnaraki, PhD, director of Greek Studies, at 215.895.6143, maria.hnaraki@drexel.edu.