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Athens & Tolon

May 11 - 30, 2014 (3 weeks)

Total Program Fee: $4,225

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Academics and Courses    Application, Cost, and Important Details


IMPORTANT NOTE: It is possible that not all TnCIS programs or all TnCIS courses are available at your institution. A complete listing of courses offered at each member institution is available at www.tncis.org/members. Please contact your TnCIS campus representative for instructions on registering and paying fees.



Program Location:

Rugged mountains, turquoise seas, white-washed houses, magnificent ancient and modern architecture, festive music and dancing, and mouthwatering gastronomic cuisine – all these await students who choose the fascinating and historical country of Greece for their study abroad program.  Walk where the ancients walked, and speak where ancient philosophers Aristotle and Socrates spoke in the cradle of Western Civilization, the birthplace of democracy. See for yourself the seas that inspired Homer to write The Iliad and The Odyssey.  Soak up the mythology that inspired classical drama.  Learning in this setting will be like no other study you will pursue during your college experience. We will visit Athens, home of the Acropolis and the Parthenon, the birthplace of Western philosophy, rhetoric, architecture, and literature.  In addition to the Ancient Agora, Mars Hill (famous for Saint Paul’s “Sermon on Mars Hill”), and the National Archaeology Museum, we will visit other sites of interest and get to know the city of Athens. We will also make our way toward picturesque Tolon, stopping along the way at mystical Delphi, Patras (the site of the ruins of Poseidon’s temple, the spot from which Aegeus kept his heart-wrenching vigil as he awaited the return of his son Theseus), and/or ancient Olympia where you can run against your classmates in our own race.  Our headquarters for the remainder of the trip is the thriving resort village of Tolon, located in the northeastern corner of the Peloponnese, very near Nafplion, which was the first capital of the modern nation. Although Tolon has become somewhat more popular with tourists in recent years, it has retained all its charm and friendliness. From Tolon, we will make day trips to Mycenae and Epidaurus, and visit the ancient theatre at Argos as well as ancient Corinth, historically connected to Saint Paul.  We will cruise to a couple of Greece’s numerous and lovely islands, having our own private cookout to celebrate the end of the trip, the trip of your lifetime.

Program Description:

In case you are wondering about the wisdom of visiting Greece because of its economic woes of the past couple of years, fear no more.  Rick Steves reports that tourism has been virtually unaffected by the crisis except that its notoriously warm hospitality is warmer than ever.  Additionally, Greece is one of the “bargain” locations of Europe since prices have remained the same or have even come down over the past few months.  It’s gratifying to know that in traveling to Greece, we can contribute to their economy while visiting a beautiful country, enjoying wonderful food, and experiencing the rich historical, literary, cultural, and artistic contributions of Greece.  Much of Greece's history relates back to the primary thinkers and artists of ancient civilization, when so many works of philosophy, the arts, and even history reflected the same principles. The courses offered in Greece will build on the country’s rich history and cultural traditions while program excursions will enhance topics studied in each course. 

Excursions may include: There will be multiple excursions in and around the Tolon and Athens vicinities. Excursions may include visits to Ephesus, Mycenae and Epidaurus, Olympia, Corinth, Delphi, Patras, the temple of Poseidon, the Acropolis, and the Ancient Agora.

Please note: Prospective students should be aware that study abroad programs require a great deal of walking. You should be prepared to walk at least a mile or two each day, and you should bring shoes that are appropriate for comfortable walking. You may also walk over steep, uneven, possibly slippery or rocky terrain even in cities.  Flip-flops are not recommended for such walking, although they can come in handy while in the seashore village of Tolon.

Classes will be held three hours per day during the week.

Accommodations:  Budget accommodations in hotels in Athens, Patras, Delphi, and Tolon will include two meals a day (breakfast and dinner).


All TnCIS programs are academic in nature and course work that takes advantage of the program location will be the central focus. Programs offered by TnCIS through any member institution  are in keeping with SACSCOC policies for each respective institution where compliance is monitored at the institutional level.  TnCIS program courses are for credit only. In Greece, students will enroll in ONE of the following courses:

ART: Art Appreciation (No Prerequisites)
This course focuses on understanding the visual arts, and their roles in western and non-western traditions, through an examination of their media, formal structure, and cultural context.  Significant visual achievements, from ancient times to the contemporary period will be examined and discussed. Art Appreciation in Greece offers unique opportunities to study the principles of art and architectural design at diverse locations throughout Greece.  On-site exploration will bring art history to life as we visit the Parthenon, Mycenae, and many other landmarks of western culture.  There will be multiple opportunities to experience and study the broad range of art history at the National Gallery locations in Athens and Nafplion, The Byzantine and Christian Museum in Athens, as well as various contemporary galleries.  See course syllabus

SPEECH: Public Speaking (Prerequisite:  ENGL 1010)
Rhetoric, or the practice of giving speeches - particularly those of a persuasive nature - flourished in the Greek city-state of Athens in the fifth century B.C.E.  Rhetoric or oratory was the means by which most Greeks settled civic disputes, determined public policy and established laws.  The principles and practices of the oral communication process, with a primary emphasis on extemporaneous public speaking, will be the focus of this course. Working through classical rhetorician Aristotle’s canons of rhetoric, in which the five parts of the speech-making process are outlined, students will study the role of the speaking voice and the practice of public presentation. Beginning in Athens, where Pericles used his powers of persuasion to convince citizens to rebuilt the Acropolis and erect the Parthenon, visits to those places and the Agora (the square where citizens discussed public policy), and Mars Hill (where the Apostle Paul delivered his message about the Unknown God), students may have opportunity to speak where these classical orators once spoke. Ephesus in Turkey, the islands of Santorini and Tolon and other historical cities, should offer a wealth of historical information for speeches from which students can practice the art and skill of public address.  Students should walk away from this experience not only with an understanding of rhetorical process, but also with the knowledge of its rich and diverse roots.  See course syllabus

ENGLISH: Western World Literature I (Prerequisites: ENGL 1010 & 1020)
This course is a survey of masterpieces of Western World Literature from the Ancient, Medieval, and Renaissance periods.  Students will visit sites that are relevant to the works of the Greek classical poets, philosophers, and dramatists, as well as sites that are significant to Greek culture.  In a “brick and mortar” classroom, students learn about those infamous three crossroads at which occurred an incident that heaped sorrow upon sorrow on Oedipus and his family.  In Greece, we will actually see those very crossroads.  Likewise, the study of early Christian literature is enhanced by students standing on the very spot where the Apostle Paul gave his famous sermon on Mars Hill, and a view of old Corinth contextualizes the letter to the Corinthians in a memorable way.  While in Greece, students can see, and even stand upon, those locations.  Walking in the steps of the philosophers, poets, and dramatists, students can experience, hands-on, the steps of the Acropolis where young men sat at the feet of the philosophers, and they can see for themselves the set-up of the ancient stages in which the acoustics are so perfect that a whisper from the center of the stage is easily heard by the most remote audience member.   See course syllabus