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Ancient Rome and Its Legacy

monument vittorio emanuele rome 12.29.17

Program Highlights:

The city of Rome is a living museum.  As the center of the powerful and long-lived Roman Empire, the city's ancient past has served as the foundation for an uninterrupted history spanning the Medieval, Renaissance, and Baroque eras, all of which live on as integral parts of the lives of modern Romans today. And so this city of the Colosseum, the Circus Maximus, and the Vatican is not just about the past, it is a lively city filled with energetic people, incredible food, and an active nightlife. Rome is the perfect place to study abroad, combining an unparalleled history, art, and architecture to study while you experience a fascinating modern culture and people.

The CSUSM program in Rome will focus on the ancient history and lasting legacy of the Roman Empire in the visible remains, living structures, and works of art in the city of Rome over the course of twenty-two days under the guidance of Dr. Darel Engen. Most days there will be a two-hour class meeting in the morning followed in the afternoon by a two to three hour visit to an important site or museum. One thing is for sure, students will make Rome their living classroom. 

Academic Calendar:

December 27, 2022- January 18, 2023 (depart December 27 to arrive by late afternoon December 28)

Academic Focus:

  • Ancient Roman history and its legacy in the modern city
  • Vatican

Courses Available:

Undergraduate:  History 304A and History 304B (topics in history); will satisfy upper-divsion GE (CC & DD)

Graduate:  Two History 699s (independent study)


  • Class level:  Open to all class levels though students wishing to clear upper-division GE will require 60 units or more and upper-division standing.
  • Satisfactory Academic Performance to departure
  • Proof of current COVID-19 vaccination (at least the initial vaccination(s) plus at least one booster if eligible) is required to participate in any of CSUSM’s international travel programs.  Due to the increased risk of contracting COVID while travelling, as well as the increased likelihood of having serious complications from COVID if you are not vaccinated, exemptions (religious or medical) are not currently accepted for our travel abroad programs; COVID vaccination is a required pre-requisite. 


Six units will be awarded as detailed above, History 304A and History 304B or two History 699s.


All students will stay in the 4-star Best Western Hotel Universo in Rome. Students will be accommodated in twin rooms with private bathrooms.  Daily breakfast is included with your hotel stay.

Anticipated Site Visits & Program Highlights:

  • Piazza Venezia & Monument to Vittorio Emanuele II
  • Villa Giulia Museum & Museo Nazionale Etrusco
  • Colosseum
  • Palatine Hill & the Roman Forum
  • Capitoline Hill & various museums including Museo Nazionale Romano Palazzo Massimo alle Terme
  • Ostia Antica archeological site
  • Bocca della Verita, Arch of Janus, Archo of the Moneychangers and various temples
  • Circus Maximus & Theater of Marcellus
  • Mercati di Traiano
  • Piazza Navona, Piazza Colonna & Trevi Fountain
  • Piazza di Spagna, Piazza del Popolo, Pincio Hill & various churches
  • St. Peter's & Vatican Museums, Sistene Chapel, including Papal audience
  • Galleria Borghese
  • Domus Aurea Experience
  • Catacombs of St. Callixtus
  • Esposizione Universale di Roma
  • And many more!

Estimated Total Cost*:

$4,300**+ Extended Learning Fees, estimated at $492 for six units

All fees include airport pick-up and drop-off, transportation pass in country, accommodation, welcome and farewell dinners, daily breakfast, most excursions and medical insurance.  Airfare and personal expenditures NOT included in the program cost, estimated at $1,860.

Additional Expenses to Budget:  
Airfare:  $800-$1,200 (great deals are out there for those who book early, but do await permission to book by Global)
Meals:  $660 (estimated at $30/day; you may spend more or less)
Spending money:  $400 (depends on the individual, could spend more or less)

**Program price will be reduced to $3,700 if more than 20 students enroll!

Faculty Led Cancellation Policy

Some Useful Airfare Search Engines:

Please be sure to read the fine print concerning change fees, taxes, luggage restrictions, etc. before booking.  Whenever possible, book directly with an airline and include trip cancellation insurance.  Do NOT book flights until Global Education has given you the authorization to do so.


An adult passport book with at least 6 months validity until expiration is necessary for overseas travel.  First-time passport book applicants can expect processing times up to 4 months.  Plan to submit your passport applications early if you enroll in this program as withdrawals due to passport delays will not be refunded.  Non-US travelers are responsible for researching entry requirements and possible visas through their country's consular pages.

To Apply: 

  1. Attend an information session led by Faculty Leader Darel Engen (
  2. Fill out the online application materials via the link below.   All application materials must be completed by Friday, September 23 along with your non-refundable $500 deposit.  Online payment preferred through TransAct.  Please be advised to choose E-check and enter your checking account details to avoid the 2.65% convenience fees applicable to all non-checking account payments. Cash, checks, and money orders made payable to CSUSM will also be accepted via the Cashier's Office in Cougar Central, but must include this deposit form to track the payment.
  3. Final payment is due on Monday, October 31, following the payment guidelines outlined above.  Payment of tuition related expenses will be billed by Extended Learning and appear on your Student Center, following the payment guidelines set out for Winter Intersession.
  4. Submit your flight details to Global Education here:  Flight Information Form
  5. A mandatory pre-departure orientation will be held with Global Education & Professor Engen to discuss arrival instructions and the upcoming courses.  

January in Rome 2023 Application:

January in Rome 2023 Application

Attend an Info Session:

Day Time Location
Wednesday, September 28 2:00-3:00 pm MARK 322
Thursday, September 29 12:00-1:00 pm MARK 201