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Study Abroad

Maymester Opportunities

EUS 2260-05: Migration, International Health and Alpine Adventures, from the Swiss Alps to Italy

photo In this Maymester, Professor Barsky will make the link between radicalism and creativity, safe haven and international law, as well as between medicine and international engagement by exploring institutes, specialists and natural settings in the Swiss Alps and then in Rome, Italy.  Beginning in Geneva, the students will be introduced to the international legal and non-governmental organizations that uphold international laws, notably the Red Cross, the World Health Organization, the International Organization for Migration, the United Nations, UNICEF, the International Labor Organization, the World Trade Organization, Doctors Without Borders, and the United Nations High Commission for Refugees.  Students will meet with high-ranking officials from those organizations, and witness firsthand the kinds of work that is directed from Geneva offices.  We will then travel to Grindewald and Murren, to explore the sublime heights that have inspired so many artists, writers, painters, and philosophers including Dorothy and William Wordsworth, Lord Byron, Mary and Percy Shelley, John Turner, James Fenimore Cooper, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Friedrich Nietzche and others.  We will complete our Swiss tour on Monte Verità, where we will encounter Dada (Hugo Ball, Emmy Hennings, Hans Arp), Psychoanalysis (Carl Jung, Otto Gross), modern dance (Rudolf Laban, Mary Wigman), anarchism (Otto Gross, Mikhail Bakunin), expressionist art (Paul Klee) and others.  We will complete our work in Rome by returning to refugee and migration studies, and we'll be introduced to the Joel Nafuma Refugee Center, the International Organization for Migration Rome office, the Migration, Asylum and Social Integration Center, and other migration organizations in the country that is at the flashpoint of the current crisis. For more images from past Maymesters, please visit the Facebook page here.

View student Judith Cohen's YouTube video, filmed during the Maymester in the Alps 2015.


Other Study Abroad Opportunities

All European Studies majors are encouraged to participate in one of Vanderbilt's study abroad programs. This experience is invaluable in widening one's intellectual and cultural horizon. Information on study-abroad options is available in the Global Education Office or on their webpage.

Please note : The Foreign Language Requirement for the European Studies major stipulates that participation in one of the Vanderbilt intensive-language programs in Europe satisfies the requirement. If students participate in one of Vanderbilt's predominantly English-language programs in Europe, they must nevertheless complete course work through the intermediate level in one European language, or demonstrate equivalent proficiency. In other words, only foreign language immersion programs satisfy this requirement. The same holds true for students who study abroad through non-Vanderbilt programs.


Past Study Abroad Opportunities

Maymester in Vienna and Prague 2017 


Probably no other European capital preserved its former glory with equal attention to detail while transforming the past into a versatile, modern present.  Once the center of a huge and multi-ethnic Empire, Vienna still plays a major role in world politics with its multiple United Nations offices and cultural institutions.  A link in between West and East, North and South, Vienna has been a market place of diverse cultural ideas and political concepts for centuries.  Once a part of the Hapsburg Empire, Prague kept close ties with Vienna over the centuries and shares its vibrant multi-ethnic and cultural history.  Students will explore the cultural diversity of Vienna and Prague in their European context, their history, art, music, Jewish life, politics, museums, and monuments.  Trips to historic sites along the Danube river such as the Melk monastary, to the nearby Alps, and evening outings to world-class concerts and plays will complete this Maymester in the heart of Europe.  Check the Vienna Instagram project from last year's trip: .

Photo by: Jared Brover, Schoenbrunn Garden

Prof. Christopher Zeller
European Studies Program
EUS 2260-04  
EUS 2260/GER NEQ above 2350/AXLE credit (INT)

International Summer School July 2015 - Antwerp, Belgium

LEF 2015 Upon entering Belgium, I had no idea what to expect. I had never been to a foreign country before, and I only speak one language. However, upon arrival I found that there were very few major differences. Yes, there were minor things: roads were not the typical perpendicular layout we have here, buildings were centuries older than ours, and we speak different languages, but fundamentally, we are very similar. I quickly bonded with many of the students, and though I was only there a week, I believe I made lifelong friends.  --Ethan Conner, student participant

LEF 2015 Attending summer school at the University of Antwerp was probably one of 
the best decisions I have ever made.  Even though the program was only a week long, it was presented the opportunity to connect with students from all around the world -- South Africa, Armenia, Belgium, France, Turkey, Slovakia, Malaysia, and so many other countries -- and to learn and understand the world from a different perspective.  We focused on the concept of Fraternity, as the final chapter of the slogan from the French Revolution. Especially with the crisis in Greece and within the European Union and with immigration policy and with the social welfare system, we explored how fraternity intersects with all aspects of life in both Europe and around the world.  --Robyn Du, student participant

Photos by Robyn Du