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  • Locations: Willemstad, Curacao
  • Program Terms: Spring- Embedded
  • Restrictions: PSU applicants only
Program Description:

Program Overview     

CRIM 425 (Organized Crime) is an embedded course that will feature 13 weeks of online instruction and one week (March 2 - 9, 2019) of in-person instruction in Curacao. The online portion of the course will concentrate on the theoretical explanations for the prevalence of organized crime and on the nature of American and international organized crime. Special attention will be given to the definition of organized crime, the various theories that have been advanced to explain organized crime, the relationships among organized criminals, legitimate businesses, and governments, the legal and law enforcement responses to organized crime, and the functional role played by organized crime in society.

The travel component of the course will occur in Curacao. The Caribbean island of Curacao has long been a haven for smugglers and black market entrepreneurs. Curacao's location and harbor has enabled it to play an important role in piracy, slave trading, people smuggling, and contraband trafficking. We will focus primarily on such trafficking while in Curacao. Our classes and site visits will be led by American Drug Enforcement Administration agents, Dutch Koninklijke Marechaussee (military police) officials, Curacao Customs and Coast Guard officers, and Curacao police personnel.

Curacao is also home to beaches, excellent diving and snorkeling, and a vibrant Caribbean night life. Students will have ample free time for personal exploration of the island.

Students may also opt to enroll in KINES 001 for 1.5 (GHA) credits. Students will participate in various physical activities throughout the semester and in Curacao. Curacao activities include snorkeling, hiking, and yoga.

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:
  • This course is open to all majors and/or all colleges.
  • 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 hotel/hostel overnight accommodations.

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: Howard Smith 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 complete an online application.

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
Spring- Embedded 2020 08/21/2019
Rolling Admission 03/07/2020 03/14/2020
NOTE: The application deadline date is NOT as it appears above. Please contact the program leader, (Howard Smith), by emailing ( if you are interested in applying for this embedded program.

** 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