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FY@broad Greece: International Travel for First Year Students
Athens, Greece
Program Terms: Spring Break
This program is currently not accepting applications.
Click for Tuition + Program Fee Spring Break
Dates / Deadlines:
Thank you for your interest in this program! We are not currently accepting applications. In general, applications open about 6 months before program application deadlines.
Fact Sheet:
Program Type: Short-term Academic Level: First-year
Living Arrangements: Hostel Language of Instruction: English
Prerequisite: WRD 103 Liberal Studies Domain: Focal Point
Program Description:
parthenonWhen a past event is no longer of any concern and can be in good conscience forgotten, we say, “That’s ancient history.” By contrast, the participants in this course will come to see  “ancient history” as a still vital, determining, and perhaps even inspiring force in our historical present. Indeed, many of the most fundamental concepts we employ to understand our world and ourselves emerged among the ancient Greeks between the 7th and the 4th centuries B.C.E. However, it was not extreme cultural confidence or optimism that made them so influential and productive. Rather, the Greeks saw the human condition as one of profound and irremediable finitude; They believed in the crucial and always potentially disastrous limitation of human understanding and of the human being’s power to secure his or her own happiness. We will find this tragic worldview in the poetry of Homer, Hesiod, Aeschylus, and Sophocles, in the history of Herodotus and Thucydides, and in the philosophy of the Pre-Socratics and the early Socratic dialogues of Plato.

The second phase of the class will involve a study-trip to Athens, one of the world’s most beautiful, vibrant, and historically rich cities. We will spend a number of days in Athens, beginning with walking the route of the Panathenaic procession from the Kerameikos Cemetery all the way to the Acropolis and Parthenon. In Athens, we’ll visit the Theatre of Dionysus, the ancient Agora, as well as the Pnyx, where one of the world’s first democratic assemblies met regularly, and we’ll take day trips to Mycenae and to the absolutely stunning site of the Oracle at Delphi.

Please note: While priority is given to first-year students on the FY@broad programs, sophomores may also apply if they were unable to complete the Focal Point Seminar in their first year due to inflexible class scheduling in their major.



*The Tragic Worldview of the Ancient Greeks (LSP 112)
In ancient Greek poetry, history, and philosophy, we will find a certain tragic worldview at work. That is, a recognition of our human finitude, the potentially disastrous limitation of our understanding and power. Indeed, we will find here in their emergence many of the most fundamental concepts we use to make sense of our lives today.

Students will also receive two credit hours for ANT 397: Travel/Study.

* In place of LSP 112, Honors students receive credit for HON 105 - Philosophical Inquiry.

**Prerequisite for this program is WRD 103.

**Honor's students must complete HON 100 as a prerequisite for this program. Please note: If you have AP Language and Composition credit, you will already have course credit for WRD 103.

Living Arrangements

We will stay in a very nice, and simple, hostel located right in the center of Athens, which will provide us with breakfast every morning. Indeed, even on the days of our field trips we will return to the hostel in the evening. And we will have the opportunity to eat every night in one of the city’s terrific (and very authentically Greek) restaurants.


All students participating in study abroad will be charged both tuition and a program fee. Tuition is billed at the students regular DePaul tuition rate based on the number of credits enrolled. Click here for the program fee for your program.  Read the details carefully to understand exactly what is included. Please also note the withdrawal policy.


Students interested in this program may apply for Short-Term Program and FY@broad scholarships. For more scholarship information, please click here.

Passport and Visa

If you are planning to study abroad and do not have a passport, apply for one immediately. Some programs require students to obtain student visas. In that case, contact the countrys local consulate or embassy for up-to-date instructions.  Please note that visa requirements can change quickly. The Study Abroad Program will update this website to reflect changes as they become available.


Questions about this program? Contact your study abroad advisor Cara Miller at or visit during your advisor’s open advising hours

Meet the Faculty

Sean Kirkland
Associate Professor
Department of Philosophy
Dear First Year Students, Parents, and Family,
Many thanks for taking the time to investigate DePaul’s First Year Study Abroad programs. Every DePaul student is encouraged to become what we might call a “citizen of the world,” one who has been exposed to and deeply understands various cultures or worldviews and the differences between them, and who strives to think and act within the inexhaustibly rich global context that contains them all. We seek to broaden our students’ horizons in this way not only because it makes them better problem-solvers and better innovators, but also because it makes them better human beings. Participating in a First Year Study Abroad program is the very best way to begin the process of acquiring just this kind of admirable “worldliness.”
My name is Sean Kirkland and I am a professor in the Department of Philosophy specializing in the thought of the ancient Greeks. I made this my area of specialization in part because I am convinced that studying our ancient history, in particular the period of the 8th to the 4th century BCE in Greece, is absolutely vital to the project of coming to understand ourselves and our historical present. Indeed, the thought, the art, and the poetry of that period continue to exert a profound influence on our late-modern world.
In “The Tragic Worldview of the Ancient Greeks,” the First Year Study Abroad course I offer, we will spend the quarter studying ancient Greek philosophical, historical, dramatic, and poetical texts. Over the course of the quarter, reading the canonical works of Homer, Hesiod, Herodotus, Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Plato, it will become clear that the astounding cultural and scientific accomplishments of the ancient Greeks arise not from the supreme confidence of the Greeks as a people, not from an arrogant belief in their capacity to understand the world exhaustively and bend it to their will, but rather from a deep recognition of and an attempt to accord with the limitations they saw as essential to human knowledge and power. We will contrast this “tragic” awareness at every point with the aspirations of modern science and technology, which seem to push inexorably toward a totalizing mastery over our environment…sometimes with disastrous results. At quarter’s end, we will then travel to Athens, the center of the ancient Greek world, and we will experience first hand the material culture in which that tragic worldview is still palpable. We will spend time on the Acropolis where the art and architecture that typifies this ancient place can be found, visit the Pnyx hill where the world’s first true democracy assembled itself, sit in the Theatre of Dionysus where the world’s greatest tragedies were first performed, and even travel to Delphi, where the Greeks sought divine guidance in the form of mysterious oracular pronouncements. Again and again we will be confronted by the material remains of this radically different worldview, even as we will come to see the abiding influence it has had on the development of our own culture.
I imagine that some will have concerns about the safety or security of travelers to Greece given protests over austerity measures in recent years. Let me first say that DePaul’s International Programs office monitors governmental travel warnings and all sources of information concerning the places in the world that our students visit, and they would not hesitate to cancel a trip if they feared for the safety of the students. We select our routes, our housing, and our activities with safety in mind at every step. I am comfortable negotiating foreign environments (having lived abroad for nearly a decade), I will be able to speak the language, and we will have a very well designed plan in place for any eventuality. All the students will also have international health insurance in case any health-related issues arise. If you have any particular concerns not addressed here, I am happy to speak to them individually.
Indeed, please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have. Thanks again for your interest in the First Year Abroad program and in the study trip to Greece in particular. I am confident that it will be a life-changing and enriching experience for any student who chooses to participate.
Best regards,
Sean D. Kirkland
Associate Professor
Director of Graduate Studies
Department of Philosophy

Sean D. Kirkland is Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at DePaul University. He has published on the work of Plato and Aristotle Pre-Socratic philosophy, and ancient Greek tragedy, as well as on Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Foucault.


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This program is currently not accepting applications.