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Czech Republic

May 29–June 30, 2017

Including the Baltic States Latvia and Lithuania

Prague is a spectacular European capital city that was home to two Holy Roman Emperors in the Gothic and Renaissance eras, and then a principal city of the Austrio-Hungarian Empire. After WWI, Prague became the sophisticated capital of independent Czechoslovakia, but from 1948 until the Velvet Revolution in 1989, the country was under the political and economic control of the Soviet Union. Today, Prague is one of the most popular destination cities in Europe, for good reason: it dazzles visitors with its architectural splendor, its free-spirited, bohemian temperament, and its distinctly Czech culture of innovation and resilience.

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Program participants will receive credit for one FSLT (Literary Studies) course, LLC 260 Literature and Social Change in Eastern Europe. In the centennial year of the Russian Revolution, this course will include important short stories from Czech, Polish, Baltic, and Russian authors. All participants will also enroll in a specially designed course, LLC 397 ST: The Idea of Central Europe. Both courses involve guided readings and discussion-based, interactive classes, as well as hands-on research assignments that are designed to get you out into the cultural, economic, and social life of the places we visit.

Since both courses focus on historical and contemporary issues in Central and Eastern Europe, we will not spend our entire time in Prague. After 2 weeks of intensive study and discovery in Prague, we will embark on a 10-day fieldtrip to the Baltic capitals of Riga (Latvia) and Vilnius (Lithuania), and visit Poland (with stops in Bialystok and Warsaw). Students will pursue individualized research projects on topics that are most salient in this region: the new orientation towards eco-agriculture and marketing; the layered history of architecture and design in this ancient but technologically fast-forward corner of Europe; the legacy of the holocaust; the political importance of Baltic participation in NATO; the complexity of language(s) and national belonging.

LLC 260 Literature and Social Change in Eastern Europe: “Eastern Europe is like Europe, only more so.” Home to Ukrainians, Jews, Germans, Poles, Russians, Ruthenians, Slovaks, and the Baltic peoples, this part of the world was dominated by contesting powers and ideologies during and after the Russian Revolution of 1917. In 1990, Lithuania became the first Soviet republic to declare its full independence from the USSR, starting a cascade of political change that quickly led to the collapse of Communist Party rule. As we now know, the abrupt end of the Soviet Union created unexpected new landscapes of privilege and poverty, hope and despair, a greatly expanded European Union, and a new Russian geopolitics. Vivid discussions of seminal literature from this area will help us make sense of these events. (Note: UR course counts toward cumulative GPA and carries elective credit in RSST and ISME).

LLC 397 ST: The Idea of Central Europe: An interdisciplinary exploration of how and why Central Europeans define themselves as neither “West” nor “East.” Historical and contemporary importance of Central Europe in cultural and geopolitical contexts. Taught on site during the summer, with relevant field trips, mandatory class presentation and final portfolio/project report. (Note: UR course counts toward cumulative GPA and carries elective credit in ISME and ISPD).

What's Included
  • Two units of UR credit
  • Housing in well-managed apartment units in city center
  • On-site orientation and constant attention from CERGE staff
  • Faculty-led field trips and excursions both within the city and beyond
  • 24-hour access with card ID to CERGE computer lab
  • On-site supervision by UR program director
Not Included
  • Roundtrip airfare
  • Most meals
  • Local cell phone coverage (recommended for texting)
  • For some non-US nationals, visa fees for any of the countries visited
Activities & Excursions

Extended study trip to Latvia, Lithuania, Poland

Application, Timeline & Fees

Application & Deposit: $300 nonrefundable deposit with application

  • Application DeadlineExtended to February 24!
  • 1st Payment: March 17
  • Final Payment: April 17

Cost: $5,950 (not including round-trip airfare to/from Prague) — the dollar’s strong value against the Czech karuna should enable budgeting $15-$20/day for food.

Submit payments in the Student Accounts office (payable to University of Richmond, designated Czech Republic Study Abroad).

Scholarship: UR students are eligible to apply for the Holt Summer Study Abroad Scholarship. Selected recipients will receive approximately $2,000 toward the cost of an approved UR Summer Study Abroad program.

Professor of Russian and International Studies
International Studies Concentration Advisor: Modern Europe
Russian literature and culture
Czech literature and culture
Sociobiology in cross-cultural perspective
History of science (Soviet Union)
Required Forms
Current UR Students

All current University of Richmond students may apply online using Gateway Abroad, the same online application system used for semester- and year-long study abroad programs.

Follow this link to begin your online application:

UR students will not need to complete the PDF application forms that appear below.

Non-UR Students

Students who are not enrolled at the University of Richmond can apply for UR Summer Study Abroad programs if they meet program eligibility requirements.

The following application forms should be completed by non-UR students. All forms are required. Submit packet to Summer School office, or as directed. Must include parent/guardian signatures if under age 18. Include deposit payable to University of Richmond.

Study Abroad Application

Summer School Registration

Agreement & Release

Emergency Information

Contact Us

Office of Summer Studies
Professional & Continuing Studies
Special Programs Building
28 Westhampton Way
Univ. of Richmond, VA 23173

Phone: (804) 289-8133
Fax: (804) 289-8138

Monday-Friday: 8:30am–5pm
Closed for University holidays