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  • Locations: Bologna, Italy; Munich, Germany; Parma, Italy; Turin, Italy
  • Program Terms: Spring- Embedded, Summer-Embedded
  • Restrictions: PSU applicants only
Program Description:

Program Overview     

This course examines European food production norms. This is an embedded study tour of food processing facilities abroad. 
It is designed to give upper level food science students an appreciation of how food is produced and processed abroad. Students will experience behind the scenes tours, demonstrations, and hands-on activities.
A major point of emphasis for the course is comparing and contrasting food production norms in the U.S. and in Europe. The course consists of pre-trip classes/meetings.  This course aims to demonstrate basic food science concepts (e.g., food chemistry, food microbiology); therefore, prior coursework in food chemistry (FD SC 400 or equivalent) and food microbiology (FD SC 408 or equivalent) are important prerequisites.
Our students will be exposed to food production systems that are both similar and different from the ones they know from their industry internships and coursework at Penn State. They will draw from their existing knowledge in food chemistry, food microbiology and safety, food engineering and production, and food nutrition and flavor, and apply this information to examine the food production systems in Europe. 
Besides applying and expanding their scientific and professional knowledge, this course also furthers their personal development. Many of the students that participated in the past have never traveled outside of the US. Our department and the College of Agricultural Sciences recognize the importance of international experiences, as food production is already a global endeavor. Our students' success depends on this intercultural competency and thorough understanding of global agricultural and food production practices.

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:
  • The pre-requisites for this course include FD SC 400 and FD SC 408.
  • This course is open to all majors and/or all colleges at University Park campus only.
  • 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 overnight accommodations in a hotel/hostel.

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 Ryan Elias by emailing 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: Ryan Elias 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, eligible student applicants (i.e., those meeting the pre-reqs) will be ranked based on semester standing, GPA, and the strength of an 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 TBA TBA
Summer-Embedded 2020 08/21/2019
Rolling Admission 05/10/2020 05/20/2020
NOTE: The application deadline date is NOT as it appears above. Please contact the program leader, Ryan Elias, 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