Summer: Rutgers- Lifestyles of the Mediterranean

Athens, Greece | Leros, Greece

Program Overview

Term Start Date End Date Application Deadline
Summer I
May 13, 2024
May 26, 2024
Mar 01, 2024
Summer II
May 27, 2024
Jun 09, 2024
Mar 01, 2024
Language(s) of Instruction
Class Standing

Acceptance on a rolling basis, until program is full. Final deadline for applications March 1st.



Program Advisor

The Program

Come experience the culture of health and wellness that define the Mediterranean lifestyle!

The course Lifestyles of the Mediterranean combines theoretical lectures with experiential activities to cover the fundamental principles and components of the Mediterranean lifestyle, i.e., the adoption of the Mediterranean diet, the promotion of a physically active lifestyle, and other lifestyle habits that have been found beneficial for health (e.g., adequate rest, hydration, conviviality during meals and exercise).

Some days will be devoted to theoretical lectures, followed by relevant experiential activities or study and research in libraries of local institutions. Other days will be devoted entirely to field trips, excursions and interactive educational activities, including visits to monumental sites, demonstrations of Mediterranean lifestyle practices by local community members, cooking classes and tasting of Mediterranean recipes in traditional food-service establishments, as well as collective sports activities in nature (walking, cycling, hiking, etc.).

Program Locations




During the first week, the program’s educational activities will take place in Athens, the capital of Greece. While in Athens, students will familiarize with the history, evolution and culinary aspects of the Mediterranean lifestyle, through visits to archaeological sites and educational workshops in traditional food markets and establishments.




In Greek mythology, Artemis (Diana to the Romans) was the goddess of wild animals, vegetation, and the hunt. This fertile land of green low hills & plains was her favorite island, and she was much revered by the locals, who built her temple in the Partheni area, in the north. Today, the local agricultural produce includes olives (+oil), citrus, figs, other fruit, and vegetables. Visit this Eastern Aegean Island and discover a place where daily life follows a leisurely pace, and the famous Greek hospitality is ever-present.


The traditional Mediterranean lifestyle, a cluster of habits and practices that have been associated with various health benefits, is the heritage of millennia of exchanges of people and cultures of all countries around the Mediterranean basin. With a view of spreading the core constituents of the traditional Mediterranean lifestyle and passing the knowledge regarding its beneficial effects on health, the program «Lifestyles of the Mediterranean» aims to introduce this traditional lifestyle pattern to students of the modern era, through observing traditional practices and undertaking experiential activities.

The program will take place in Greece, where the Mediterranean lifestyle has been implemented for thousands of years. Lectures, workshops and other educational activities will cover the fundamental principles of the Mediterranean diet, a dietary pattern that has been recognized by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity and recently proposed as a health promoting diet in the 2015-2020 USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The program will also address other Mediterranean lifestyle practices, including: 1) consumption of fresh, minimally processed, local, seasonal and eco-friendly foodstuffs, 2) frugality and moderation in relation to energy balance and body weight, 3) use of herbs and spices to introduce a variety of flavors and palatability to dishes and allow for a reduction in salt use, 4) adequate hydration with emphasis on water and traditional herbal infusions, 6) adoption of a physically active lifestyle, 7) conviviality with regard to the social and cultural value of meals and physical activity, and 8) stress relief and adequate rest during the day.

The program’s educational activities will take place in Athens, the capital of Greece and the island of Leros in the Aegean Sea. While in Athens, students will familiarize with the history, evolution and culinary aspects of the Mediterranean lifestyle, through visits to archaeological sites and educational workshops in traditional food markets and establishments. The program will continue with a 10-day trip to Leros. While in Leros, students will study the production, nutritional properties and health benefits of traditional Mediterranean foods and spirits, familiarize with the concept of Greek breakfast, taste traditional Mediterranean recipes, and participate in several interactive educational group activities. During the 2-week program, some days will be devoted to theoretical lectures, discussion sessions or workshops on the scientific and culture themes of the day, followed by studying in local institutions. Other days will be devoted entirely to field trips, excursions and interactive educational activities, including visits to monumental sites and cultural places of natural beauty, demonstrations of Mediterranean lifestyle practices, as well as collective activities in nature

Fulfills 3-credit upper level elective for Exercise Science and Sport Management majors.

Download the Summer I (May Session) Syllabus

Download the Summer II (June Session) Syllabus

Download the Program Brochure

Learn more about the program here: and

Housing and Meals

Students will stay in hotels, breakfast and most meals will be included.

Financial Information

Program Costs

This is the billed amount that will appear on your Rutgers term bill during the term you study abroad.
NJ Resident non-NJ Resident
Undergraduate $4,200 $4,530
Graduate $4,410 $4,720
Program Cost includes:
  • Tuition
  • Housing
  • Most meals
  • Excursions
  • Administrative Fees
  • Emergency Medical Access Abroad

Out-of-Pocket Costs

These are estimated expenses that are not part of your term bill. Students will need to pay for these expenses out-of-pocket.
Airfare $1,100
Meals $150
Personal Expenses $200
Total $1,450.00
Out-of-Pocket Cost includes:

The above costs are estimations and represent the known out-of-pocket costs students encounter during their time abroad.

Some of these expenses will be paid for prior to going abroad, such as an airline ticket, while some of these expenses, such as meals and personal expenses, will be paid in-country as part of your daily expenses. As you plan, you will need to budget these costs and spend wisely throughout your time abroad.


Available to all Rutgers students participating in a Rutgers Global–Study Abroad program. Applications can be found inside of your study abroad program application. For more information, please visit the Scholarship section of our website

Faculty Leaders

Labros Sidossis

Dr. Sidossis is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health. He is a native of Greece and has spent the past 30 years researching the role of lifestyle factors i.e. diet and physical activity in the prevention and treatment of various diseases including obesity, insulin resistance and dyslipidemias.

Joanne Hunt

Joanne Hunt has been teaching at Rutgers University for more than 20 years.  She has a Master's Degree in Therapeutic Recreation from New York University and A Bachelor of Science Degree in Community Recreation from Pennsylvania State University.  Joanne has a long professional career in non-profit and community recreation programming, grant writing, international program development, and corporate training and recruitment.

Nancy Goldberg

Nancy Goldberg is an instructor in Department of Kinesiology and Health. She has a BS in Community Recreation from Pennsylvania U and an MS in Recreation and Resource Management from NYU. Nancy is an avid volunteer in the community and enjoys travel and exploring the world.

Student Testimonials

See what students have to say about the program in this video!