Drexel in Belgium: EPA Brussels
The Educational Programs Abroad (EPA) program in Brussels is a great opportunity for students in Global Studies, History, and Political Science. This program offers a unique combination of study with internship experience. Students take two courses at Vesalius University while simultaneously completing an internship, directly immersed into both the culture and working environment of Brussels. EPA offers excellent internship opportunities in museums and galleries, media and publishing, law, NGOs, marketing and public relations, business and banking, and representations of foreign governments. For more information on Brussels program click here.
Students take courses at Vesalius College, the undergraduate English-language division of the Vrije Universiteit Brussels (VUB). The campus is located 20 minutes from the European Parliament. Students have access to all the facilities of the Vrije Universiteit including the library and computer resources. European Parliament interns also have access to the European Parliament library.
Watch Drexel student video about Brussels.
Read Drexel student blog
Brussels is the principal center of the European Parliament and the European Commission. It is also home to the political arm of NATO and the corporate headquarters of many multinational firms. Brussels is one of the most international cities in the world with 27% of the population comprised of foreigners. Brussels is the home of roughly 40,000 European Union employees, 4,000 NATO employees and over 90,000 lobbyists.
There are three official languages in Belgium and an official language border between the three regions. In Brussels French is the primary language, but all public signs and documents are in two languages. The city has an efficient metro system that makes commuting easy, but many people prefer to walk — particularly in the well-preserved medieval center. There are many spacious parks and quiet squares in its center and wide open spaces on its outskirts. Brussels is also great base for traveling to all parts of Europe.
- 3.0 minimum GPA
- FREN 103 completed prior to study abroad
- Sophomore status or higher
The EPA Brussels program course offerings
include Politics, History, Communications, Humanities, Business, and more. Students participate simultaneously in an academic internship during their study term. Internships are available with members of the European Parliament, multinational corporations, municipal governments, international law and service agencies, and arts institutions. These internships are academic in nature and do not
fulfill a co-op requirement. Internships generally require 24 hours per week. A typical schedule may be having two class days per week and three internship days.
Students take a total 15 credits on the EPA Brussels program:
* 2 Vesalius University courses for 4.5 credits each (standard letter grades)
* GST 399 6 credits for successful completion of internship and internship reflection papers (pass/fall grade) Sample GST 399 Syllabus
Students may select courses from the Vesalius course catalog.
Students must obtain pre-approvals by the appropriate department for each course. For example, a Vesalius history must be pre-approved by Drexel's History Department in order to receive Drexel credit. Students should also review the list of pre-approved EPA Brussels course equivalents.
Students are taught by Vesalius University professors for two courses and will earn Drexel credit and grades toward their Drexel GPA.
The GST 399 Internship credit is reviewed by the Drexel Global Studies Program Director for Drexel credit on a pass/fall basis.
Fall Semester Dates and Itinerary
*Students should be prepared to leave summer term class/co-op several weeks early. For co-op cycle adjustments, students should begin planning 12+ months in advance.
|Program Start Date
||Mid to late August*
|Program End Date
Accommodation is secured for students by the Brussels program director before their arrival. Most students live in small studio apartments with combined bedroom and living quarters. Home-stays with local residents are also available.
Students studying in Belgium will be required to obtain a Belgian higher education long term study visa
. Please visit the Belgium Embassy website of host country to determine visa application process. This visa cannot be applied for until 90 days before the start of the program.
Estimated Program Costs
Students will be billed a study abroad program fee that includes the cost of housing, orientation, and some group activities in Brussels. Review the Estimated Study Abroad Costs page for a list of approximated program expenses include the study abroad program fee. The program fee will be billed to students' Drexel ebill prior to the start of the program.
Tuition & Financial Aid
This is a Drexel sponsored program, thus your Drexel tuition and financial aid remain the same during the term abroad. Students may also want to submit a revised budget to Drexel Central to see if additional funding may be available. Students who receive Federal Work Study should consider applying for the Study Abroad Online Journalist work study position (only available to students after acceptance).
Scholarships: Those interested in seeking additional funding should review the Drexel Affiliated and External Scholarships pages. Remember that scholarship deadlines may be much earlier than study abroad deadlines, so plan accordingly.
The first week of the EPA program is devoted to orientation including social activities are held to acquaint students with each other and with Brussels. All aspects of the program are covered in detail during orientation and particular emphasis is given to familiarizing students with the major European institutions.
EPA students are able to make use of the full campus facilities at Vesalius College. In addition, they can get to know their classmates by participating in activities arranged for international students – or by joining one of the many student societies and clubs.
Drexel students highlighted on EPA's blog: Nicole's Blog Zack's Blog