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Microbiology in Western Europe

Biomedical Research and Public Health Aspects in Western Europe
Earn three hours of biology credit and visit some of Europe's leading pharmaceutical companies and infectious disease research units.
Location: 
Paris, France; Strasbourg, France; Heidelberg, Germany; Geneva, Switzerland; London, England
Language of Instruction: 
English
Term: 
Summer
Academic Disciplines: 
Biology
Health
Exercise Science
Community Health
Nursing
Pharmacy
Pre-Med
Program Type: 
Faculty-led
Open to non-KU Students
Faculty Led
Highlights: 
  • Explore the differences between European and US health care systems by visiting leading European public health organizations, reserach institutes, and pharmaceutical companies.
  • Spend three weeks exploring and experiencing remarkable cities in France, Germany, Switzerland, and England.
  • Earn three Biology credit hours towards your degree.
  • Review our coronavirus information page for details on how we're planning for study abroad this summer.
  • Now accepting applications for Summer 2021.
Program Summary: 

This program will take students to some of the leading infectious disease research institutes and pharmaceutical companies in Germany, France, Switzerland, and England.  Participants will be exposed to many of the public health approaches and aspects of western European countries giving them the opportunity to compare and contrast those found within the United States.  The itinerary will also include visits to historical sites related to infectious disease impacts on human development (e.g. plague, pox vaccine, etc.), industry visits highlighting food microbiology processes, as well as cultural tours and activities.

Location: 

The program will visit the following cities in Summer 2021:

  • Geneva, Switzerland
  • Basel, Switzerland
  • Strasbourg, France
  • Heidelberg, Germany
  • Paris, France
  • London, England

Details for the Summer 2021 itinerary are still being confirmed, but check back soon for updates.

2021 TENTATIVE Itinerary

June 26 - Depart U.S.

June 27 - Arrive in Geneva, Switzerland (3 nights in Paris): The program begins with an orientation session and guided walking tour of Geneva to see the highlights of the city. The following days in Geneva will include visits to the World Health Organization (WHO), the United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG), UNAIDS Headsquarters, the Red Cross Museum, and a day trip to Gruyere.

June 30 - Travel to Basel, Switzerland (1 night in Basel): Participants will visit Hoffmann-La Roche, a Swiss multinational healthcare company with pharmaceutical and diagnostics divisions to learn about their reserach in the health care sector. Other visits will include the Anatomic Museum and the Pharmacy Museum.

July 1 - Travel to Strasbourg, France (2 nights in Strasbourg): From Basel, students will travel to Strasbourg, the capital of the Grand Est region of France and the official seat of the European Parliament.  A visit to the hospital group Saint Vincent will provide participants with a comparative view of the French and US health care systems.  The itinerary also includes a winery tour and a weekend excursion to the Haut-Koenigsbourg Castle, former residence of Wilhelm II.

July 3 - Travel to Heidelberg, Germany (5 nights in Heidelberg): Participants will then travel on to Heidelberg, home to one of Germany’s most reputable universities.  A guided tour of the Germany Pharmacy Museum and Heidelberg Castle will start things off, and during their time in Heidelberg participants will have the opportunity to visit several leading research institutions such as the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), the German Cancer Research Center, and the Max Planck Institute for Medical Research. The group will also visit Fresenius Medical Care, a German company specializing in the production of medical supplies.

July 8 - Travel to Paris (5 nights in Paris): The program in Paris begins with a guided boat tour down the Seine River, one of the most relaxing and expedient ways to view the sights of Paris. The following days in Paris will include visits to the Palace of Versailles, the Institut Pasteur, the Musée du Louvre, UNESCO head offices, Museum of the History of Medicine, Micalis Institute, and the Musée Pasteur.

July 13 - Travel to London (3 nights in London): For the final leg of the program, participants will take a train to London. The group will enjoy a walking tour of London and visit Lister Institute of Preventive Medicine, the Science Museum, and the Alexander Fleming Laboratory Museum.

July 16 - Depart London and return to U.S.

Academic Information: 

Three hours of upper level undergraduate credit are granted by the University of Kansas upon successful completion of the program.

Credit:  BIOL 423 – Non-laboratory Independent Study

BIOL 423 will count towards the elective requirement for all biology majors, and it also satisfies KU Core Goal 6.

Housing: 

Participants will stay in conveniently located hotels in Paris, Strasbourg, Heidelberg, Basel, Geneva and London.  Rooms are double or triple occupancy, and continental breakfast is included daily.

Identity Abroad: 

SAGE is dedicated to creating international engagement opportunities that meet the needs of all our students and providing resources to support you through the process of studying abroad. Study abroad is achievable for students of all identities including our BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ students, students with disabilities, and students with religious/non-religious viewpoints. Before selecting a program, consider how your identities may impact your experience abroad in unique ways and talk with your Program Coordinator about any program-specific concerns. Students with documented disabilities should discuss any accommodation needs with their Program Coordinator early in the planning process.

Additional Resources

Check our Identity Abroad page and resources listed below for information specific to you and other students who may be on your program.

Eligibility: 

Open to undergraduate and graduate students, sophomore level and above, from any accredited US college or university who have a minimum 2.5 GPA.

No prior biology experience or knowledge is required, but priority will be given to students pursuing one of the Molecular Biosciences majors. Priority will be given to current KU students, but students from other colleges and universities will be accepted if space is available. 

Program Faculty: 

Dr. Scott Hefty, Professor and Undergraduate Studies Director for the Department of Molecular Biosciences will lead the program.

pshefty@ku.edu
785-864-5392
8051 Haworth Hall


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Spring 2022 programs now accepting applications !

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