The program will include at least the following required courses:
1.“Classroom Europe,” a series of four weekend excursions from Prague to Poland, Germany, Greece, and Austria
2. Two-week Czech language and culture “bootcamp”
3. One-credit journal project, “Reflections on Prague”
An additional required course may be added, so applicants should check the program website for revisions and additions.
1. Classroom Europe (HIS 132)
This unique and dynamic class will focus on Central Europe after 1918, giving participants an overview of the significant events in recent political history that shaped the modern-day nation states they will be visiting. Framed against this historical backdrop, students will analyze the issues surrounding the expansion of the European Union and the ramifications on Europe’s future. Students are expected to prepare for each trip by reading assigned materials and attending regular mandatory lectures, which will help them maximize the learning outcomes. This course is taught by former Czech Ambassador to Italy and the Vatican, Jiri Holub, who speaks seven European languages fluently.
The planned excursions are designed to enhance the overall learning experience and students must actively participate in all of the programmed activities. There will be limited free time for students to pursue their own interests. Taking place over four long weekends during the semester, students will visit the following places: Poland (Krakow, Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp), Germany (Berlin, Potsdam, and Dresden), Czech Republic (Český Krumlov), Austria (Salzburg, Vienna), and Greece (Athens). Students will have an opportunity to experience and see the following:
• Wieliczka Salt Mine Guided Tour
• Historical Center
• Castle Complex on Wawel Hill (Bell Tower and Cathedral)
• St. Mary’s Church
• Main Market Square
• Kazimierz District (former Jewish district)
• Podgorze District (former Jewish Ghetto: 1941-1943) Optional Visit to Oskar Schindler’s Factory
• Auschwitz-Birkenau Former Concentration Camp and Memorial Guided Tour
• Reichstag Building and Guided Tour
• German History Museum
• Pergamon Museum
• Brandenburg Gate
• Checkpoint Charlie and the Berlin Wall
• Unter den Linden Avenue
• East Side Gallery
• Potsdam - Cecilienhof Palace, Site of Potsdam Conference of the Allies (1945)
•Overnight Stay in Český Krumlov, Czech UNESCO Heritage town
• Historical Center
• Birthplace of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
• City Center
• Belvedere Museum
• Hundertwasser Architectural Area
• Schönbrunn Palace Guided Tour
Accommodation: Students will stay in hotels or hostels located in or near the city centers. Breakfast is included.
2. Czech Language and Culture “Bootcamp”
This two-week intensive Czech language course is part of the orientation program, meeting before the semester begins for five hours a day, five days a week. Students are assigned to either morning or afternoon classes. The course is a combination of Czech language instruction, cultural activities, and excursions throughout Prague. This intensive immersion course is taught in small groups (maximum 13 students per group) by highly qualified faculty members of Charles University. Students will be introduced to basic Czech language and structure, as well as Czech history and culture, giving them the necessary foundation to build their semester experience.
3. Reflections on Prague
One-credit study abroad project
As a part of the UPrague experience, students will submit weekly online journal entries describing how their study abroad experience is impacting their learning. Students will describe their experiences, challenges, and accomplishments as they undertake studies in Prague and through Europe. This one-credit project is a useful tool for students to track and record their own personal development while studying abroad.