January Mediterranean Food, Culture, & Society: Spain, Italy, & Greece

Gap Year Friendly

Eat (and learn) your way through three European powerhouses: Barcelona, Rome, & Athens.

In the Mediterranean, food is more a window into the local culture than a tool for survival. Study how, when, and what locals eat in Barcelona, Rome, and Athens. Study the business behind the industries of food production and exportation, the nutritional elements behind the Mediterranean diet, and take home some recipes for a lifetime of cooking. Courses are taught in English, but students are highly encouraged to practice their Spanish, Italian, and Greek language skills outside of the classroom to truly get the most out of the experience.


What to Expect:

  • Language: English
  • Average Courseload: 1 course (3 U.S. credits)
  • GPA Requirement: 2.5

Highlights:

  • Visit world-famous sites, from the Acropolis to the Sagrada Familia
  • Learn outside the classroom with academic excursions
  • Packed with learning experiences beyond the classroom
  • Tight-knit travel group with a renowned international professor
  • All trip-related travel included once you're in Europe!

Program Details

Barcelona School for International Studies

At Barcelona School for International Studies (SIS), you’ll enjoy innovative courses in the heart of the vibrant, playful city of Barcelona. The city center is just a ten-minute walk from campus. SIS prides itself on offering unique curriculum, allowing you to fulfill courses in languages, culture, history, art, and the humanities. At SIS, you can immerse yourself in the local culture, make Spanish and international friends, and have easy access to all that Barcelona has to offer.

SIS shares its facility with a renowned language school, providing you with the opportunity to meet students from around the world. The campus is located in the Eixample district of the city, where many of Barcelona’s distinct neighborhoods are just a walk away, including the old city, La Rambla, and the Barceloneta beach.

The program focuses on immersion in the Spanish language, but mostly offers classes taught in English. Your diverse international professors are all highly qualified, and they are used to adapting their courses for study abroad students. You’ll get to enjoy the use of spacious classrooms, multimedia equipment, and other modern amenities during your time in Barcelona.

Accreditation(s): Barcelona School for International Studies is accredited by Jacksonville University.

Areas of study with fewer than 3 classes available

  • Humanities

Don't see your major listed here? There may still be courses available. Browse our programs by major.

Students receive three credits from our School of Record, Jacksonville University in Florida.

All students take Food, Culture, and Society in the Mediterranean Basin.

For additional course and program details, please click here.

Why Life in Barcelona, Rome, and Athens

Live La Vida Local

  • Olive Oil Tasting Tour

    Learn firsthand what it takes to cultivate and organically produce premium extra virgin olive oil.

  • Human Towers

    Go to the practice space of the local Castells, a sport where teams compete to make the tallest tower possible.

  • Cooking classes

    Cooking classes with a professional chef.

  • Food Festivals - Local “Sagra”

    The sagra is an Italian festival, organized in some towns, or regions, and is always linked to a local tradition or food celebrated in the course of the event. There are several “sagra” around Rome including truffle festival; seafood pasta festival; suppli festival; wine & grapes festival.

  • Farmers Markets

    Check out and get your daily shopping done at the local market. Get to know the farmers, practice your Italian and stay healthy by eating seasonal products!

Housing During Your Program

Location

Students will live in shared rooms in centrally-located apartments, hotels or upscale hostels in each city (Barcelona, Rome & Athens). Exact housing allocations are shared with students a few weeks before arriving on-site.

Check out the photo gallery to see examples of housing that we’ve used before.

Meals

Meals are not included in the program fees but students will have access either to a kitchen or affordable alternatives. With local cuisine taking center stage during this program, why not try your hand at preparing your own fresh dishes?

Inclusions and Amenities

  • BathroomShared
  • CommutePublic Transportation
  • Double Room
  • Kitchen Equipment
  • Microwave

What's Included

Inclusions

Program fees are in US dollars and include the following:

  • Cities include: Rome, Florence, and Barcelona
  • All trip-related travel within Europe, excludes airfare to and from the U.S.
  • CIS Abroad support services before, during and after the program
  • Academic advising
  • Financial aid counseling
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • Full-time tuition & fees
  • Housing
  • Pre-departure and on-site orientation
  • Airport pickup
  • Medical & Accident Insurance
  • Jacksonville University transcript
  • La Vida Local cultural program

Welcome & Orientation

Upon arrival, you’ll take part in both the university and CIS Abroad orientation program. You’ll learn the “do’s and don’ts” of living in Barcelona, Rome, and Athens. Upon arrival in Barcelona, you’ll take part in the CIS Abroad Logistical, Cultural and Academic Orientation with other students and interns on the program. The onsite staff will introduce you to this dynamic and cosmopolitan city that you will call home, giving you tips on to how to be safe and healthy as well as how to make the most of your time in vibrant Barcelona. Oh, and there’ll be a welcome meal, something traditional and yummy, as you celebrate this new adventure with your group!

Farewell & Re-Entry Program

Though you’re not an astronaut returning from space, re-entering your home culture after being abroad can be shocking to the system. We’ll walk you through some of the things to expect, rehash your time abroad so that you can remember the highlights and, yep, we’ll feed you one last delicious Greek meal before you go!

Program Excursions

While participating on a CIS Abroad program, you'll be able to take part in built-in day trips at no additional cost. These trips are subject to change from term to term; listed below are excursions that have run in the past.
Sagrada Familia

Sagrada Familia

The Basílica i Temple Expiatori de la Sagrada Família is a large unfinished Roman Catholic church in Barcelona, designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Construction started in 1882 and is still going on to this day.

Colosseum and Imperial Forums

Colosseum and Imperial Forums

Wander about one of the world’s most infamous architectural sites, the Colosseum. No visit to Rome is complete without touring the Flavian Amphitheatre where gladiators and animals fought as entertainment for ancient, imperial Rome. The nearby Imperial Forums will impress you with their monumental remains.

Acropolis of Athens

Acropolis of Athens

Make a visit to the sacred rock of the Acropolis, where you can admire architectural treasures dating from the 5th century BC.

Your Support Staff

CIS Abroad Advising & Support
Travel Tip:

You’ll be supported every step of the way!

Global Advising

Our advising team will help match you with a program that fits your academic and personal needs. Once you have selected your program our advisor will help you complete your Online Application.

Program Enrollment

Once you’ve started your application and submitted the $90 deposit, you’ll be assigned a program enrollment coordinator who will guide you through the enrollment process to get you abroad!

Layla Dworkin
Travel Tip:

Travelling isn’t just about seeing new places and photographing their monuments, museums, food and landscapes. Travelling isn’t about knowing new cultures and people to label and judge them. Travelling is about allowing ourselves to experience with all our senses and open our mind, letting what we see sink in so that we can reflect on it and learn in a much more conscious way. That way, we can travel on a whole other level.

COVID-19 Plan

COVID-19 Plan

We believe that study abroad is still possible during the COVID-19 pandemic, but certain policies and procedures will need to be in place to ensure every student can be safe and healthy during their semester abroad.

We monitor international indicators and health standards in the country and our risk management team makes decisions based on those and our own policy. We will make a decision no less than 45 days before a program starts what options are available to you and what the contingency plan is for your program. We will do all that we can to support you during this time.

Learn more about CIS Abroad’s Risk Management Team’s three step process for operating  our programs around the world and important program refund policies.

On-Site Program Modifications

We are excited to offer you this program after many months of travel restrictions! Just as you’ve experienced at home, many aspects of day-to-day life and program components may be altered to keep you and the community you are visiting safe. These may include single accommodations, certain academic offerings being delivered online, safety protocols such as mask-wearing, and other changes.

While some excursions and activities we’ve offered in the past may not be available, we do know that you’ll still be able to soak in the beauty of the country and immerse yourself in the local culture.

Prices and dates are subject to change based on any changes that are required to accommodate changing local laws and guidelines.

See our COVID-19 page for more information. Speak to your Program Coordinator or Advising Team for the most up to date information about any changes to this program.

Dates & Prices

ADVISOR TIP: Please WAIT to book flights until you have received confirmed dates in your acceptance paperwork. Dates posted here are subject to change.

  • Application Deadline: Oct 15 (Estimated)
  • Arrival: January 2 (Estimated)
  • Departure: January 19 (Estimated)
  • Price: $5,690 (Estimated)
Additional Information:

As with all study abroad programs, you should count on a few additional expenses.

CIS Abroad reserves the right to alter fees at any time due to currency fluctuations and/or fee changes made by our partner universities.