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Programs : Brochure

This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options.
Fact Sheet:
Education Abroad Adviser:
Erica Nikolaisen
Minimum GPA:
Class Standing:
1 - First Year
Language of Instruction:
English, German
Language Requirement:
0 semesters
Internship Available:
Fields of Study:
Business, German, International Business, Political Science
Program Description:



  • 18 years of age or above
  • Good academic and disciplinary standing at Penn State
  • 3.0 cumulative GPA or better at the time of application
  • Sophomore standing or above at the start of the program 
  • Applicants are recommended to have taken Econ 2 or 4 prior to enrolling in this program

Program Description 

On the Pforzheim University Business Summer School program, students will learn about Germany's place in the European and Global communities in terms of business, culture and politics. This will involve visits to global businesses large and small, such as Mercedes, Daimler-Chrysler, Porsche, Bosch and Hugo Boss. Global jewelry companies headquartered here will also be included in the schedule. In addition, students will hike in the Black Forest, visit the Supreme Court in Karlsruhe and travel to cities such as Berlin, Frankfurt and Munich for on-site history, politics and cultural lessons.  

Students will earn 9 credits for successful completion of the full program. The summer program offered by the Pforzheim Business School combines a unique combination of academics, business orientation, language, and culture. Students will take the following three courses:

  • Perspectives and Developments in the EU: Students discuss the history of European integration following World War II, learn about the challenges and responsibilities of the European Union’s institutions, and discover the link between political developments and subsequent economic outcomes in the Single European Market and the Eurozone. Students will gain a deeper understanding of the European Union and discuss the EU‘s options for the future. Included in the overall program are visits to institutions such as the European Parliament in Strasbourg, the European Central Bank in Frankfurt and the German stock exchange.
  • European Business, Politics and Culture: Students explore a number of topics relevant in today’s business environment. Classroom and off-site lectures are led by some of the Business School’s top professors and a number of industry experts from major firms and institutions. Company visits illustrate how these themes affect real companies and institutions, providing students with the chance to pose questions directly to business owners, R&D managers, recruiters, etc. Preparatory sessions are moderated by graduate students (with deep direct management experience), who assign a number of cases studies to student teams as a method of stimulating critical thinking and further discussion of these and related topics. 
  • German Language: A beginner’s course is available for students without previous knowledge in the German language. Students with a more advanced knowledge of the German language, will take classes in the regular program of Pforzheim University’s Institute of Foreign Languages. 

Students from all majors are welcome to apply.


Summer: mid May- late June

Refer to the program website for the specific dates, if available. 


Pforzheim is situated between the cities of Stuttgart and Karlsruhe, in the SouthWest of Germany in the state of Baden-Württemberg. It is also known as the northern gateway to the Black Forest. Southwestern Germany is one of the important economic regions in Europe. Global companies such as Mercedes, Bosch, IBM, Hewlett-Packard, Michelin, Porsche, etc. are located in this area.

Pforzheim itself is famous for its jewelry. As the center for the German jewelry, watch and silver goods industry, Pforzheim is also renowned as the "City of Gold". The three rivers Enz, Nagold and Wuerm form the townscape. The nicely arranged boardwalks and parks are perfect for a nice walk, for jogging activities, inline skating or merely for taking some time out. The sunny "City of Gold" with approximately 117,000 inhabitants also has its cultural highlights: a town theater, the "Kulturhaus Osterfeld", the unique jewelry museum and the Schmuckwelten Pforzheim representing an international centre for jewelry and watches.

Numerous student cafes, clubs and last not least the popular student parties at Pforzheim University make student life attractive.

Pforzheim is embedded in a fantastic natural landscape offering versatile leisure activities. Not only spa and resort towns such as Baden-Baden are located here but also the northern Black Forest is a perfect hiking region – a popular place of excursions. Interesting destinations for week-end trips are adjoining France (the Alsace region), Switzerland and Lake Constance.

Education Abroad in Countries with a Penn State Restricted Travel Designation

In order to comply with Penn State’s International Travel Policy, students interested in studying abroad in countries that Penn State has designated as “restricted” for travel, a petition for a waiver must be submitted. Once a petition is complete, and if the student is approved for study on the program in question, the student may be asked to meet with the Director of Education Abroad and the petition will be reviewed by the Penn State International Restricted Travel Committee (IRTC). The necessary petition will be included in the online application process for this program. To see if your program is taking place in a restricted travel country, please visit the Global Programs website.


Available Fields of Study

Business, German, International Business, Political Science

Course Listings

To find courses on the Pforzheim University Business program, follow the instructions on the host program page.

To see what Penn State students have previously taken on this program, see the Historical Course List, which is meant to be a guide as to what courses might be available and how they might transfer to Penn State. Courses listed here may not be offered during the semester you attend the program and the credit amount or course title may have changed. 

Note: You are not limited to choosing classes on the program Historical Course List. You should consult the full list of courses on the host program page before choosing a program.

Course Selection

To find appropriate courses that will fit into your degree requirements, you will need to work with your academic adviser. Suggested tips:
  • Research courses available on your program
  • Meet with your academic adviser to discuss potential courses abroad and your degree requirements 
  • To register for courses on this program you will work with your host program
All students will enroll in the following 9 credits:
  • Perspectives and Developments in the EU (IB 499 - 3 credits)
  • European Business, Politics, and Culture (IB 399 - 3 credits)
  • German Language (GER X99 - 3 credits)

Academic Policies

  • You must enroll in a minimum number of 9 credits and a maximum number of 9 credits 
  • You cannot take any courses abroad on a Pass/Fail basis
  • World Campus courses should not be taken in addition to or as a substitute for courses offered abroad
  • You may not take sport or physical activity courses (e.g. sailing, bowling, yoga, etc.) abroad
  • If you are studying abroad in your final semester at Penn State, please note that Penn State may not receive your grades in time for graduation 

Course Equivalency Process

In order for courses from abroad to appear on your Penn State transcript, each course must be given a course equivalency. Please visit the Academics section of the Global Programs website for information on the course equivalency process.  

Courses can be submitted for course equivalency before, during, or after the education abroad program, however, you should begin this process as soon as possible as it can take on average 2-4 months or more for courses to receive a Penn State course number. In some cases, it can be difficult to obtain syllabi from abroad before the start of the term, but when possible, courses can be submitted for review before departure. Talk to your Education Abroad Adviser about requesting syllabi.

Grade and Credit Conversion Scale

Grades and credit conversions from your host institution cannot be changed. They will be converted to Penn State credits and grades based on the following scales:
Grade Conversion Scale
Host Institution Grade Penn State Grade
 A A
 A- A-
 B+ B+
 B B
 B- B-
 C+ C+
 C C
 D D
 F F
Credit Conversion Scale
Host Institution Credit Penn State Credit
 3 Credits  3 Credits

Housing and Meals


Housing is guaranteed and included in the program. Students will live in an international guest house dormitory near Pforzheim University. Each room will have 2-4 occupants.

Independent housing is not permitted on this program. There will be no exceptions. 


Breakfast will be available every day or a small meal stipend will be distributed to cover the cost of breakfast.Students will be responsible for all other meals.

Costs and Funding

Program Costs

Summer Costs

The cost of a program is based on Penn State tuition rates and partner institution fees. Due to the variety of locations and partner institutions, costs will vary depending on the program. Education Abroad works closely with our partners to ensure the most accurate cost estimates, however, fees can change quickly and without prior notice. Consult the cost sheets for your chosen program often and if you have any questions please contact your Education Abroad Adviser


The Education Abroad Office awards a number of grants and scholarships to students who participate in an education abroad program through Global Programs. The application for the scholarships awarded through the Education Abroad Office is included with your program application. Eligibility is based on academic merit and/or financial need. You must have a current FAFSA on file to be awarded. There are additional scholarship opportunities through our partner universities, Penn State Academic Departments, and other sources. To view a full list of scholarships, eligibility requirements, and deadlines visit Funding Study Abroad.


Student Aid

Penn State students who plan to study on a Penn State approved program can use most forms of financial aid towards the cost of the program. Exceptions include work-study awards and some athletic scholarships. If you have specific questions regarding your aid awards, contact the Penn State Office of Student Aid

Withdrawal & Refund Policy 

Withdrawal and refund details are dependent on the timing and reason for your withdrawal from a Penn State Education Abroad Program. For specific details and steps on how to withdraw, read the Education Abroad Policies

After Commitment

Once a student has committed to a Penn State Education Abroad program, they are financially responsible for any fees incurred on their behalf. Therefore, if a student plans to withdraw from a program it is their responsibility to immediately notify the Education Abroad office, in writing; email is preferred. 

Regardless of the timing or reason for the withdrawal, the student will be responsible for paying the Education Abroad Administrative Fees. Additional fees from the partner institution will be assessed according to their withdrawal and refund policies at the date of the withdrawal notice.

After the Start of the Program 

If a student withdraws after the start of a program, any adjustment of Penn State tuition charges will be made according to the Tuition Adjustment Schedule as determined by the Office of the Bursar. Students may be responsible for up to 100% of program costs. In most cases, partial credit cannot be awarded for leaving a program before its successful completion.

For additional information on withdrawal policies, separate and apart from financial consequences, please consult the University Senate Policy on Withdrawal and Leave of Absence.

Life Abroad

General Information 

Studying abroad can be one of the most exciting and transformative experiences of your college career. It is an opportunity to develop independence, build cross-cultural competencies, grow as a person, and enhance your academic program. Entering a new culture can be challenging for everyone. You may ask yourself: is this the right country for me? What are their cultural norms? How will my identity be perceived there? What can I do to prepare for this experience? What will my daily life be like? Below are resources to help you answer these questions.


Penn State Education Abroad works closely with campus resources and our partner institutions around the world to ensure that students of all abilities reach their goal of studying abroad. While we cannot guarantee the accessibility of all program sites and locations, specific accommodations may be arranged on an individual basis. If you have accommodation needs or further questions please consult with the Student Disability Resources office and your Education Abroad Adviser. Additional resources are available through the Global Program Website. Disability information will not be used during the admissions process, but rather is meant to provide students with resources to help in planning a successful experience abroad.

Gender and LGBTQA

There are dramatic and subtle differences in how gender, identity, sexual expression, and sexual health are perceived in different countries. Before going abroad, it is important that you research the specific country or countries you will be visiting and have a full understanding of their cultural norms. Below are some resources to help you with that research and provide guidance for your life abroad.

Race, Ethnicity, and Faith

When choosing a study abroad location and preparing for your travels, you will want to be mindful of how your experience will be different than what you are used to in the United States. Your racial, ethnic, and spiritual identities may be interacted with and labeled by others differently than what you expect. Here are resources to help you prepare for these differences.

Non-U.S. Citizens

It is possible for non-U.S. Citizens to study abroad through Penn State. To do so successfully, you must plan early because this process may involve obtaining visas and other governmental procedures. Check with your DISSA Adviser prior to committing to a study abroad program and speak with your Education Abroad Adviser for specific information on the host country. If you plan on traveling to other countries during your study abroad experience, you will need to research and make plans to adhere to immigration policies for all of the countries that you plan to travel to and through. You are responsible for applying for visas for all applicable countries on your own. Advisers in the Education Abroad office cannot apply for your visa for you. Additional information may be available through your country's embassy and the consulate for your study abroad country.

Next Steps

Steps to Study Abroad

The planning stages outlined on the Global Programs website will help you have the best study abroad experience possible. We recommend that you begin this process at least one year prior to the semester you plan on studying abroad. Visit the Steps to Study Abroad section of the Global Penn State website. 

How to Apply

Click the “Apply Now” button on this page to get started!

Application procedures can vary by program. Students should consult the application instructions available within each application. For more information, see the Application Process section of the Global Penn State website. 


You must apply to this program by the Penn State deadline. For a list of deadlines visit the Application Process page of the Global Programs website.

Contact Education Abroad 

If you have general questions about Education Abroad opportunities at Penn State, please email

Peer Advisers

Education Abroad Peer Advisers are Penn State study abroad returnees who advise students on education abroad opportunities at Penn State. Each Peer Adviser can explain program options, give an overview of the study abroad process, as well as provide information about their experience abroad. Peer Advisers have walk-in hours in Boucke Building during the fall and spring semester when classes are in session. For more information, visit the Education Abroad Peer Adviser website. 

Education Abroad Advisers 

Education Abroad Advisers can provide information about courses, support services, application processes, housing details, program costs, cultural expectations, pre-departure requirements, and much more. Education Abroad Advisers have two types of meetings - scheduled appointments and walk-ins. For more information about how to meet with an Education Abroad Adviser, please visit the Global Penn State website

Social Media

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For information about upcoming events, scholarship opportunities, deadlines, and much more visit the Global Programs Events Calendar and follow us on social media!

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2018 02/01/2018
02/14/2018 05/12/2018 06/24/2018
NOTE: Start date marks arrival in host country. End date marks departure from program housing.

Indicates that deadline has passed