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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Belize City, Belize; Chetumal, Mexico; Cozumel, Mexico; Freeport, Bahamas; Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands; Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands; Half Moon Cay, Bahamas; Montego Bay, Jamaica; Roatan, Honduras; San Miguel de Cozumel, Mexico
  • Program Terms: Fall- Embedded
  • Restrictions: PSU applicants only
Program Description:

Program Overview     

The purpose of the Cruise Experience practicum (RPTM 497P) is to provide students with hands-on exposure to the cruise industry. Students interact with faculty, other students and professionals in the collaboration and sharing of ideas. The course is designed to increase students' understanding and appreciation of the cruise experience, the issues related to delivering recreation services in the cruise industry, principles of tourism, management strategies, and the factors affecting guest services. The course format is one which focuses on problem solving, encourages a high level of interaction among participating students, faculty, industry partners, and gives participants an opportunity to actively engage with customers.

This course includes a mandatory week-long, travel experience in collaboration with Carnival Cruises preceded by in class meetings and post-experience debriefing and assignments. The ship itinerary includes an overnight stay in Miami prior to departure from the port of Miami. The ship will stop in the ports of Montego Bay, Jamaica; Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands; Cozumel, Mexico with a return to Miami. Students who are unable to commit to the trip should not take this course. 

Program Quicklinks     

Housing and Meals
Program Costs
Financial Aid & Scholarships
More Information
How to Apply
Other Useful Links



Any pre-requisite courses are established by the faculty leader or department hosting the course.  The following have been listed as pre-requisites for consideration to enroll in this course and travel on the embedded education abroad program:
  • No pre-requisites.
  • This course is open to students of any major from any Penn State campus. Advanced standing students in RPTM will be given first preference. Students in other majors/RPTM minors will be accepted space permitting.
  • Admission in the course and permission to travel with the group are at the discretion of the faculty leader and/or academic department hosting the course.  Academic standing and disciplinary or conduct issues may impact eligibility.

Housing and Meals

During the embedded travel component, housing will consist of lodging on board of the cruise ship.

Program Costs

Students pay regular Penn State tuition (either in-state or out-of-state) for the credits associated with the embedded course.  Travel costs, lodging, meals, excursions, and other fees are determined by the program budget which is set by the program leader.  Please consult the program leader for additional information.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Global Programs administers a scholarship that is specifically designated to support students studying abroad on embedded courses.  The scholarship is competitive, and the deadlines to apply are strictly enforced.  Please review the Embedded Programs Scholarship eligibility, deadlines, and application process.

For More Information

For more information about this course, please contact the program leader: Patricia Kleban by emailing

How to Apply

 The process for enrolling in an embedded course varies according to the instructor and/or department.  The program leader has indicated that in order to enroll in the course and travel component, students must submit an application including submission of their unofficial transcripts and a narrative statement about how this course fits their career goals and supports the student's graduation plan.

Studying Abroad with a Disability

Many students with disabilities successfully study abroad each year. Please note that other cultures may have different attitudes and available accommodations regarding disabilities. While we cannot guarantee the accessibility of all program sites and locations, specific accommodations may be arranged in consultation with our office, the Student Disability Resources office, and our partners abroad. To prepare for success, students are strongly encouraged to research the country and program location to consider if and how they will manage their disabilities abroad in advance of selecting a program. Students with disabilities and other diverse backgrounds can begin their research on our Diversity Awareness Abroad page.



Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Fall- Embedded 2019 08/21/2019
Rolling Admission 10/26/2019 11/02/2019
NOTE: NOTE: The application deadline date is NOT as it appears above. Please contact the program coordinator Patricia Kleban by emailing if you are interested in applying for this embedded program.
Fall- Embedded 2020 08/15/2020
08/15/2020 TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Students will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed