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American College of Thessaloniki

Fast Facts

Sessions Offered:

Fall, Spring, Summer, Academic Year


Thessaloniki, Greece




• Minimum 2.5 GPA

• Good academic and disciplinary standing

• Sophomore, junior, or senior standing at the time the program begins

• Approval by UI and ACT advisor

• Check the 'Eligibility' section under the Application tab for more details.

Application Due:

• September 24 for Spring

• February 24 for Fall and Academic Year

• March 4 for Summer

Program Cost:

Check the 'Costs' section under the Application tab.

Study Abroad Advisor

Ana Jimenez

White Tower promenade

Here is your chance to experience the unspoiled areas of northern Greece, which offer natural beauty without hordes of foreign tourists. You will mix academics with culture and history by visiting important archaeological, religious, and cultural centers; viewing splendid collections of artifacts and masterpieces; and exploring major cities and scenic islands.

In this unique program, you will live surrounded by thousands of years of history - Alexander the Great, Aristotle, classical Athens - and at the same time experience modern Greece as a crossroads between Western and Eastern cultures.

For the student seeking a unique study abroad site in Greece, the American College of Thessaloniki is ideal. Thessaloniki is the "road less taken," a culturally intact city, small, diverse, youthful, and the gateway to Southeastern Europe.

American College of Thessaloniki offers:

Greek Cultural Immersion
With a student body comprised of 50% Greeks and international students from approximately 30 countries, as well as a plethora of community outreach opportunities, visiting students find a valuable cultural immersion experience at ACT.

Vibrant Student Life
ACT is a warm, welcoming, and active community that offers students the chance to explore and develop through a wide range of workshops, clubs, field trips, and volunteer opportunities.

Cultural & Historical Exploration
Students visit the birthplace of Alexander the Great, Orthodox Monasteries dating from the 12th century, the beautiful beaches of Halkidiki, and, of course, the enchanting city of Thessaloniki!

Strong Student Support Services
The International Programs Office has staff dedicated to assist students with all needs. Pre-departure, staff in the ACT Boston office are there to answer questions and provide students with the support they need. Once students arrive in Greece, staff members orient them with the campus and life in Thessaloniki and provide information on co-curricular opportunities and ways to engage with Greece outside of the classroom. ACT even provides an on-site doctor in the event of health issues.

You can learn more about the ACT program on their study abroad website and through their study abroad student handbook.

Academic Program

Alexander the Great

Coursework is available in the following areas:

  • Greek language
  • Business and Technology (Computer Science & CMIS)
  • Arts and Sciences (English, History & International Relations, Psychology, Philosophy, and Social Sciences)

The campus primarily hosts Greek students as well as international students from other European countries.


You can find a list of ACT's current course options for study abroad students on the ACT Course Listings webpage.

Once on this page, you can click on the name of the session you plan to go abroad to find descriptions for the courses offered during that session.

Applying credit toward a UI degree

Unless UI Study Abroad has an approval on file for the courses you take abroad to be applied toward a specific major, minor, certificate, or general education requirement, you will receive general elective credit for your course. The course approval process will be discussed when you meet with your study abroad advisor.

Summer Program

Note:This program is suspended for Summer 2020.

ACT's summer program is offered from mid June to mid July. UI students take 2 courses at 3s.h. each for a total of 6 s.h.

ACT offers a variety of business, humanities & social sciences, and technology & science courses during the summer. ACT Course Listings webpage

Note: The 3 s.h. only option is not available to UI students.

Excursions and Cultural Activities

ACT offers a variety of optional field trips. Note that many of these trips have an additional out-of-pocket cost. You can learn more about these field trips on ACT's Field Trips webpage.

Service Learning

ACT offers a variety of opportunities for students to participate in local service projects. You can learn more about these opportunities on ACT’s Service Learning webpage.

Program Dates

Note:This program is suspended for Summer 2020.

This program is offered for a semester, academic year, or during the summer session.

  • Fall semesters are typically from mid September to mid December.
  • Spring Semesters are typically from January to April, with an option to extend for an additional 6 weeks into June.
  • Summer semesters are typically from mid June to mid July.
  • Spring Session Information

    ACT offers two sessions for Spring: Spring I and Spring II. The Spring II session allows for students to take "extend" their Spring semester and complete an additional 6 s.h.; there would be an additional fee for adding this session on. Students can complete up to 21 s.h. if they enroll in Spring I and Spring II.

    NOTE: UI Students are not allowed to enroll in Spring II session only.

    You can find the specific dates for the upcoming sessions on the ACT Academic Calendar website.

    For More Information

    Ana Jimenez ,Advisor and Program Coordinator
    Study Abroad | International Programs
    1111 University Capitol Centre
    Iowa City, IA 52242-1802

    Phone: 319-335-0353
    Fax: 319-335-0343


    White Tower

    Life in Thessaloniki

    YouTube Video: Life in Thessaloniki

    Lonely Planet: Thessaloniki

    European Youth Capitol 2014

    The European Youth Capital is a title awarded to a European city for the period of one year, during which it will be given the chance to showcase, through a multi-faceted program, its youth-related cultural, social, political, and economic life and development.

    The first European Youth Capital was Rotterdam (the Netherlands) in 2009.

    In 2014, Thessaloniki hosted the relatively new but already successful institution of the European Youth Capital.

    Thessaloniki is the second largest city in Greece and has been characterized as the “Greek Youth Capital” for its large number of young permanent residents. More than 100,000 students give the city a completely unique pulse and vibe.

    The 2014 program included a plethora of cultural events, such as concerts and an exhibition of local graphic novel artists; sports events, such as a small marathon and a rugby match; debates; conferences; and meetings of voluntary youth organizations across Europe in collaboration with the European Youth Forum.

    More information is available on the European Youth Capitol website.


    Greece is a modern European country with a strong democratic government and a developing economy. Much of the population of Greece is concentrated in a few major urban areas, with Athens hosting about one third of the country's population.

    The Greek mainland occupies the southernmost tip of the Balkan peninsula, and it borders to the east with Turkey and to the north with Bulgaria, FYROM, and Albania. To the south and the west, Greece is touched by the Lybian sea and the Ionian sea, respectively.

    The terrain of mainland Greece is mostly mountainous, while its seas are sprinkled with more than 2,000 islands. Historically, such terrain has induced the relative isolation and independence of Greece's various population groups. These groups exhibit unique variations in culture under a homogenous Greek identity rooted in history and Christian religion.

    Cultural Resources

    ACT's Study Abroad Guide
    Visitor's Guide

    Student Blogs

    Lauren Bannon, Spring 2015

    Study abroad eve
    One month in... the do's and don'ts
    Why everyone should travel solo at least once...

    US Department of State Country Information

    The US Department of State provides safety and security information for every country of the world to help you assess for yourself the risks of travel. Each country information page contains a Travel Advisory, Alerts, and other important details specific to that country that could affect you.

    Pay close attention to the entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, health conditions, and other details to help decide whether traveling to any given country is right for you. Non-US citizen travelers may also wish to seek guidance from the embassy of their country of citizenship. The UI International Travel Policy for Students addresses restrictions on student travel to high-risk locations and engagement in high-risk activities abroad.

    Living Arrangements



    ACT will provide students with off-campus housing apartments in a residential neighborhood.

    The apartments are fully furnished (including kitchen appliances in individual studios or in common areas), and priority is given based on the date of application receipt. Both single and double-occupancy options are available. Off-campus housing locations are well served by the city’s reliable bus system, with buses running every 10 - 15 minutes.

    For more information about housing options, please visit ACT's Housing webpage.



    US Citizens

    If you do not have a passport, it is important that you apply for one as soon as possible to ensure you receive it before the program begins. US citizens can find more information about how to apply for a passport on the US Department of State’s website.

    Important notice for students without a valid passport or whose passport will expire within the next 12 months:

    US citizens can find more information about how to renew a passport on the US Department of State’s website.

    Students without a valid passport should apply for a new passport or a passport renewal as early as possible.

    Students with a valid passport should check the expiration date. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months AFTER the anticipated return to the US from studying abroad. If your passport is not valid for at least 6 months after your anticipated date of return to the US, you must renew your passport before applying for the visa you will need to enter your host country.

    Expedited processing service is available for US passports (although this still takes several weeks and is at an additional cost). UI Study Abroad encourages students to ask the passport agency at the time of application whether expedited service is recommended.

    Non-US Citizens

    Students who are not US citizens should contact Ana Jimenez ( for information on how to ensure that their passport is valid for the duration of their time abroad.


    Students will work with their program provider to make travel arrangements to their program site. The cost of travel is not included in the course fee. UI Study Abroad will not arrange a group flight to your study abroad destination.

    Do not purchase plane tickets until you have received instructions on how to do so from your program provider.

    Local Transportation

    Within Thessaloniki and around Greece, students will utilize public transportation such as buses, metro, and trains. Greeks are also very used to walking, so be sure to bring comfortable shoes!

    Thessaloniki is also well connected to the rest of the Greece and Europe by bus, train, and a major airport.


    This program is open to University of Iowa students who fulfill the following requirements:

    • Clear interest and commitment- Students must demonstrate a clear academic or personal interest in the program’s subject matter, and a commitment to engage responsibly in coursework abroad.
    • Demonstrated preparedness and maturity- Students must demonstrate preparedness to take on the heightened responsibilities associated with international study and travel. Students must demonstrate a commitment to behave responsibly abroad while respecting cultural differences. Students are expected to obey both local laws and program directives conveyed to participants before and during the program. The University of Iowa Code of Student Life applies to all program participants while abroad.
    • Minimum 2.5 GPA: Students must have, at minimum, a 2.5 GPA to participate in this program. Applications from students who have a GPA below 2.5 will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
    • Good academic and disciplinary standing: Students must be in good academic and disciplinary standing at the University of Iowa. Students placed on either academic or disciplinary probation for any period of time overlapping with the study abroad program dates are ineligible to study abroad on a University of Iowa program. Academic and disciplinary history will also be considered when determining whether a student is prepared to represent the University of Iowa as part of this program. Students who are not in good standing at any point overlapping with the program dates will have their acceptance revoked and will be responsible for the associated withdrawal fees.
    • Sophomore, junior, or senior standing: Applicants must have sophomore, junior, or senior standing by the time the program begins to participate in this program.
    • Approval by American College of Thessaloniki (ACT) and UI Study Abroad: Applications will be reviewed by ACT and by UI Study Abroad. Students will be accepted based on the review of their application materials.
    • Attendance at mandatory orientation programming: Students must attend all in-person and online pre-departure orientation programming presented by UI Study Abroad and ACT. 



    Students will be responsible for paying many of their program costs through their University of Iowa U-Bill, while other costs will be out-of-pocket costs paid by the student directly to vendors before and after going abroad. Refer to the cost sheets below for details on the costs associated with this program.

    The cost sheets outline the total estimated costs associated with participating in this program and can be used for financial aid purposes. They include fees charged on students’ U-Bill as well as out-of-pocket expenses. Actual out-of-pocket expenses will vary from individual to individual. Quoted estimates are conservatively high, yet realistic.

    Costs for future sessions are usually similar to the current session, however students can expect a modest increase in overall costs each session. Final cost sheets for future sessions are typically available early in the semester before the session begins.

    Cost Sheets

    The following DRAFT cost sheet applies to the Summer 2020 session.

    PDFDRAFT Cost Sheet- Summer 2020

    The following cost sheet applies to the Spring 2020 session.

    PDF Cost Sheet- Spring 2020

    Calculating Fees

    The cost sheets are based on the fees described below:

    Cost sheets do not include the following optional costs:

    Additional Optional Costs Paid to ACT

    These fees are all optional and are not included in the course fee for the program. The cost should be paid directly to ACT. Failure to pay these fees will result in ACT withholding your transcript.

    • Single Room Surcharge
    • Additional Course Credits (12 credits included)
    • Optional Trips/Outings

    Optional fees vary by session, and will be available shortly before the upcoming session.

    Personal Travel Costs

    Costs for personal travel are not included in the cost estimates provided on the cost sheet. If you plan to travel outside of your host city or country during or after your study abroad program, you will need to budget for additional funds to cover the cost of your personal travel.

    The cost of personal travel depends entirely on each student’s individual travel plans and spending habits. Estimates for personal travel costs provided by past students on this program vary significantly from $1,500 to as much as $9,000 or more per session.

    More Information about Optional Additional Costs

    Contact ACT for more information about these optional additional costs.

    Costs charged to the U-Bill

    • Application fee (Charged at the time of application, before financial aid/scholarships are disbursed)
    • Course Fee- Includes program tuition, Housing, some meals, ACT health insurance (Charged shortly before departure)
    • Study Abroad Fee (Charged shortly before departure)
    • CISI Health Insurance (Charged shortly before departure)

    Out-of-pocket costs (not charged to the U-Bill)

    • Round trip airfare from Cedar Rapids (Paid by the student directly to a travel agent or airline- approx. 6-8 weeks prior to departure, before financial aid/scholarships disburse)
    • Food (Paid by the student at their discretion while abroad)
    • Optional Trips/Outings (Paid by the student as needed to ACT)
    • Single Room Surcharge (Paid at the student’s discretion to ACT prior to departure, before financial aid/schoalrships are disbursed)
    • Local Transportation (Paid at the student’s discretion while abroad)
    • Passport (Paid by the student prior to departure, before financial aid/scholarships are disbursed)
    • Visa & Residence Permit (Paid by the student prior to departure, before financial aid/scholarships disburse. Contact Ana Jimenez for more information.)
    • Medical Exam/Immunizations (Paid by the student as needed prior to departure, before financial aid/scholarships disburse)
    • Personal expenses (Paid by the student at their discretion while abroad)
    • Greece Insurance (Paid by the student as needed while abroad)
    • Textbooks (Paid upon arrival to Greece)
    • Cell phone- does not include usage fees (Paid by the student as needed while abroad)
    • Personal travel expenses (Paid by the student as needed while abroad)

    How to Apply

    • Meet with the appropriate study abroad advisor to discuss your study abroad plans well ahead of the application deadline. Your application will not be approved until you've completed this step. You can set up an appointment by calling UI Study Abroad at 319-335-0353.
    • Meet with your academic advisor to review your program and ensure that it is a good match for your academic and personal goals.
    • If you and your academic advisor agree that the program is a good match for you, complete the UI Study Abroad application. Note that the non-refundable $50 application fee will be charged to your U-Bill as part of this online application.
    • Complete the ACT Application. Under I have a promotional code, enter: DE8HA2. This code associates your application with the University of Iowa.


    Acceptance decisions are made by ACT. Once you receive your official acceptance from ACT, your study abroad advisor and ACT will contact you with further information about documentation needed to complete the admission process.

    Application Deadline

    Applications for the Fall and Academic Year are due on February 24.

    Applications for the Summer are due on March 4.

    Applications for the Spring session are due on September 24.

    Acceptance and Confirmation Materials

    After you have received an email from UI Study Abroad indicating that you have been formally accepted to the program, have reviewed the estimated costs, and you are ready to commit to participating in this program, you will need to complete the following steps:

    Summer 2020 Students

    First, read, download, and complete the Confirmation of Participation and Withdrawal Policy document. Sign this document, and submit it in person to the UI Study Abroad Office on the deadline outlined in the document.

    PDFConfirmation of Participation- Summer 2020

    Note that if the Confirmation of Participation document is not submitted by the confirmation deadline, your application will be automatically withdrawn and your acceptance rescinded.

    Health & Safety Planning

    In addition to submitting their Confirmation of Participation form, students should review the following:

    Iowa Regents CISI Health Insurance Information

    UI Financial Aid Information

    Study Abroad Resources

    Students are also encouraged to complete the PDFHealth Preparation Guide for International Travel form with their medical practitioner. This document is intended to help you plan for your medical needs abroad. Please DO NOT turn this form in to UI Study Abroad.

    Scholarships & Financial Aid

    For more information about receiving financial aid while studying abroad, please review the following:UI Financial Aid Information

    You can find more information about options for funding your study abroad experience including scholarships on Undergraduate Scholarships for Study Abroad.

    In addition, take a look at ACT’s Cost and Scholarships website for information about scholarships offered directly through your program provider.


    Program participants may be required to complete immigration requirements to enter and study in Greece. ACT will provide you with visa instructions prior to departure.

    US Citizens- If you are staying in Greece longer than 90 days, you must obtain a student visa prior to arrival in Greece. You cannot apply for the visa more than 90 days prior to arrival in Greece. Upon arrival in Greece, you will also be required to register with the local police station. The on-site staff will assist you with this process.

    Refer to the Greek Consulate in Chicago webpage to see what is required for the visa.

    Non-US Citizens- Greek immigration requirements vary for non-US passport holders. Refer to the Greek Consulate in Chicago webpage to see what is required for the visa.

    UI Study Abroad will hold advising appointments to provide details on the visa application process. UI Study Abroad staff can provide some assistance on the Greek visa application process, but ultimately the individual traveler (the student) is the person who is responsible for providing correct information on the visa application and securing the visa and all other required documentation prior to travel.

    Prior to starting the visa application process check in with ACT for more information. They will let you know about important dates and deadlines you need to keep in mind.


    In order to prepare for your time abroad, you are required by the University of Iowa to complete two orientations. These may be in addition to orientations provided by your on-site provider. See below for more information.

    Online Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation

    You are required to complete the International Programs ICON course "Education Abroad Pre-Departure Orientation" prior to departure. This orientation is mandatory for all students going abroad under the auspices of the University of Iowa. It covers many practical matters about living overseas, such as health and safety, communication, money, goals, and much more. You will be enrolled in this course by International Programs and an email will be sent to you once enrolled. If you have any questions, you can email

    Program-Specific Orientation

    This orientation will be facilitated by your study abroad advisor and will cover content specific to your program and host country. It could be conducted in a group setting or one-on-one depending on your type of planned activity abroad. Your study abroad advisor will send you more information about this mandatory in-person session.

    Predeparture Resources

    ACT will provide you with a variety of pre-departure resources to prepare you for your study abroad experience. These will include a packing list, cultural information, housing instructions, etc. Ensure that you thoroughly review any information provided to you by ACT and refer back to it if you have any questions.

    These materials may be periodically updated to reflect new program information prior to departure. Be sure to check your e-mail often, so that you're aware of any updates or changes.