NAU in Greece: The catastrophic eruption of Santorini Volcano
Santorini & Athens, Greece
ABOUT THE PROGRAM
In the late Bronze Age, sometime between 1600 and 1626 B.C., the Grecian volcano Santorini catastrophically erupted causing the island to partially sink into the Aegean Sea. The eruption is thought to be the source of the legend of Atlantis, where in 360 B.C., Plato wrote of a city that sank into the sea in a “single day and night of misfortune.” This study abroad course takes you to the active volcano, where you will study the caldera-forming eruption that likely contributed to the downfall of an ancient, advanced civilization.
While on Santorini you will learn about the processes that generate cataclysmic volcanic eruptions and you will study the ancient and modern volcanic hazards associated with such eruptions. You will have the opportunity to study the bizarre landscapes and landforms of volcanic islands, explore 4,000 year-old Minoan ruins buried by the last explosive volcanic eruption, walk on and study an active volcano, tour the island by private boat, among many other unique experiences, all while being immersed in Greek island culture.
NAU in Greece is a first-year study abroad experience. The curriculum and itinerary is designed to support the specific needs of early career students in their international travel and studies. We strongly encourage early career students who have no or limited travel experiences outside of the U.S. to apply. This course is certified by NAU’s First Year Learning Initiative.
Lisa Skinner is the program leader and a Senior Lecturer in the School of Earth Sciences and Environmental Sustainability. Lisa teaches undergraduate courses in the Geology Program including field courses and Geologic Disasters, a liberal studies course that focuses on the intersection between human society and geologic events such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and floods. Her research background is in explosive submarine volcanism and GIS.
For more information on course content and a photo gallery, visit the class blog NAU in Greece. Also, check out the article on this program in the in the AZ Daily Sun here!
In Athens, learn about Classical Greek history through a visit to the Acropolis and newly built Acropolis Museum. You will also have the opportunity to visit the Ancient Agora, the Temple of Zeus, the National Archaeological Museum, and many other landmarks and excavation sites.
On Santorini, complete a geologic field study of the Little Bronze Age eruption through visiting and documenting the many rock outcrops around the island. Field locations include many of Santorini’s famous beaches.
Visit the Peloponnesian municipality of Methana (a two-drive south of Athens) to study, a volcanic center that last erupted in 230 BC.
Visit and study Ancient Akrotiri, the Bronze Age city buried and preserved by Santorini’s catastrophic eruption. The excavation site reveals the architectural advances of the ancient Minoan culture – the highlights of which are three-story frescoed houses equipped with plumbing, shops with storefront windows, and public spaces.
Tour the caldera rim by private boat to observe older historical eruptions of Santorini.
Hike along the north rim of the caldera on top of 50 and 70-thousand year old volcanic rocks with spectacular vistas of the caldera and famous village of Oia (Mama Mia was filmed there).
Hike down to the sea through 200,000 years of explosive rocks produced by Santorini’s major eruptions.
Spend a morning on the resurgent volcano in the center of the caldera, hiking to the top of a still-degassing volcanic dome.
Visit the Museum of Prehistoric Thera on Santorini, which houses many of the treasures found in ancient Akrotiri including frescoes, pottery, weapons, and jewelry.
Hike up to Ancient Thira on Santorini, the relics of a 9th-centurcy BC Spartan city, with tombs, Hellenistic houses, and traces of Byzantine fortifications and churches.
Enjoy evenings in picturesque traditional villages, sampling Greek cuisine!
This is by no means a comprehensive list of all of the learning experiences you will have!
See the "Academic Calendar" section below for an outline of the various excursions incorporated into this program.
- Minimum GPA of 2.5
- Completion of GLG112 and GLG112L OR GLG101 and GLG103 with an A or B
- Less than 60 credits completed at time of departure
- MUST BE 18 YEARS OF AGE OR OLDER AT THE TIME OF DEPARTURE.
- Due to limited spaces available for this program, program participation is highly competitive. Applicants who are admitted will be selected based upon academic standing, academic relevance to their chosen degree program, and personal motivations for attending the class.
Students can earn 3 NAU credits for EES209: INTERNATIONAL FIELD EXPERIENCE IN EARTH SCIENCE AND ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY
Geology majors and minors– 3-credit major or minor elective by petition
Environmental Science majors & minors – 3-credit general elective or applied science credit by petition (major/minor elective by petition for a Geology emphasis)
Environmental Studies majors & minors– 3-credit general elective or applied science credit by petition (major/minor elective by petition to fulfill natural science requirement)
Biology majors and minors – 3-credit general elective or applied science credit by petition (major/minor elective by petition to fulfill 14-credit science requirement)
Non-science majors – 3-credit general elective or applied science credit by petition.
*Classroom/field work begins at 10 am and ends by ~5 pm every day. Students travel and eat lunch together on all classroom/field work days*
While in Athens, students will stay at the Student and Traveller’s Inn in Plaka, Athens. While in Santorini, students will be housed at Wisteria Apartments.
To view the costs for this program, click the "costs" link at the top of this page. This will direct you to a line-item breakdown of how much the program costs and what is included in those costs.
HOW TO APPLY-
To apply to this program, all you need to do is hit the "Apply Now" button found at the top of this page. Once you submit an application, you will be charged a non-refundable application fee of $100. Starting an application is free. Once applied, you will have your own personal study abroad page, with a checklist of items needed in order to complete your application.
Thursday, September 27th from 6:30-7:30 pm
Tuesday, October 23rd from 6:30-7:30 pm
Wednesday, November 14th from 7-8 pm
Where: North Campus, Building #12 (Geology), Room 109
TALK TO AN ADVISOR
If you would like to talk to an advisor about this program, you can find his/her name at the top of this page. To make an appointment, or view walk-in hours for this advisor, please visit the "Talk to an Advisor" section located on the main menu on the left side of your screen.