Greece and Italy: The Changing Face of Europe

Greece & Italy

Information Sessions

Monday, October 29, 12:00-1:00pm, DBH 209

Thursday, November 1, 4:00-5:00pm, DBH 209

Friday, November 2, 1:00-2:00pm, DBH 209


May 28 - June 17, 2019  

Program Description 

Millions of refugees are enduring life-and-death struggles to arrive in Europe, fleeing persecution, war and poverty in the Middle East, Asia and Africa. Many of them land on the shores of Greece and Italy. But what do they find? And how is this influx of political refugees and economic migrants changing the face of Europe?

You will explore those questions as a student journalist conducting field work in Greece and Italy. Your multimedia reports will shine a light on the refugee crisis. You will speak directly to refugees, local residents, business owners, government officials and aid workers. This is not your typical study abroad program. It is journalism field work, the kind that will set you apart from other student journalists.

We will tour iconic destinations such as Athens' Acropolis and Sicily’s ancient ruins, but you will also experience what life is like in places tourists rarely get to see. You will spend quality time on the beautiful Greek island of Lesvos, unspoiled by tourism, and now a first-stop for many refugees who risk their lives crossing the waters to safety.

This course is especially important for students of journalism, although others with multimedia experience may be considered for admission.



MCOM 180ITL JMC International Experience (6 units)

Study abroad in two dynamic countries: Greece and Italy. This course offers multiple themes for study and analysis, including business, tourism, social work, economy, and immigration. Students who choose to focus on immigration will have a rare opportunity to tell immigrants' personal stories of struggle and fortitude. The crashing wave of refugees washing ashore on the coasts of Greece and Italy are changing the face of Europe. Many migrants have arrived in these countries, which are ill prepared financially to care for them. How is their presence affecting the economies and social structures of these two countries? You will speak directly to refugees, those still living in camps and those who are settled in their new homes.

This course is especially important for students of journalism, tourism, global studies, business and social work. Students may produce either multimedia news reports or research papers.

This is a 6-unit course designed for any upper division undergraduate or graduate student at SJSU (or anyone registering through Open University) including other educational institutions, who desires to learn more about global citizenship and leadership—particularly in communications and journalism. This course includes both pre- and post-trip assignments. 




Program Leader: Diane Guerrazzi

Diane Guerrazzi is an Emmy-award winning former news reporter and currently an associate professor of journalism. She taken SJSU students twice to the Middle East, making two award-winning documentaries about Oman and the UAE. Prof. Guerrazzi has organized journalism academies in Turkey, India, and the UAE, while directing two partnerships between SJSU and universities in Afghanistan, on grants from the US Embassy, Kabul. She has also directed a program improving the skills of journalists in the country of Georgia, funded by the US Embassy, Tbilisi. She has co-led programs the past three summers where SJSU students reported on the European refugee crisis in Greece, Germany and Italy. She speaks Italian and spent two full years studying at the University of Padova (undergraduate) and University of Pisa (graduate school). She wrote her U.S.C. master's thesis on Vatican Newspaper L'Osservatore Romano, and she holds a bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley in Italian and political science (double major). She has led a group of students on a six-week stay in Italy with the Experiment in International Living, spending much of the time in Sicily, a beautiful island that the group will once again explore this summer.





It is important to note that each program's total cost will vary depending on the location and the package it offers.  

$1,500 SJSU Special Session Tuition ($250 per unit)
$200 Administrative Fee 
$3,125 Program fees, lodging, class materials and class related tours approximately*
$4,825 Total Program Cost


* Airfare is not included. Students will need approximately $700-$1000 for meals and free time.


Coming Soon! 


Check out these additional resources for your program.

  • Syllabus