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Semester at Sea

Semester at Sea

Notre Dame College students can earn up to 15 credits during a Semester at Sea, studying aboard a passenger ship and exploring international port cities during a voyage to 10 or 12 countries on four different continents.

The College’s study abroad programs now feature options with the U.S.-based Semester at Sea program, administered by the nonprofit Institute for Shipboard Education in partnership with Colorado State University. Courses are fully accredited at Colorado State and most meet the generally accepted standards for transfer to Notre Dame.

Itineraries for upcoming Semester at Sea voyages:

  • embark in San Diego and travel more than three months to Hamburg, Germany, with stops in Hawaii, Japan, China, Vietnam, Myanmar, India, Mauritius, South Africa, Ghana and Morocco
  • embark in Hamburg and travel more than three months to San Diego, with stops in Poland, Portugal, Spain, Croatia, Morocco, Ghana, Brazil, Ecuador and Costa Rica, including transit on the Amazon River and through the Kiel and Panama canals

Semester at Sea

Features of the motor vessel World Odyssey floating campus:

  • nine classrooms, a library with computer access, campus store for textbooks and academic supplies, and internet access
  • full-time residential student services staff and laundry facilities, medical clinic and counseling center and student union for community programming,
  • fitness center and pool; sports equipment and board games; spa and salon; and 24-hour snack bar, coffee bistro, grill and café

Shipboard courses include in-country field experiences:

  • up to 75 upper- and lower-division courses in subject areas ranging from business and commerce to political science and international relations, anthropology and sociology, biology and ecology and philosophy and religion
  • a three-credit required Semester at Sea course in global studies
  • one-day, faculty-led field lessons provide an in-country immersive cultural experience included with all courses
  • optional fee-based field programs offer chances to visit popular city sites with licensed local tour guides

Financial aid available:

  • Semester at Sea program fee covers tuition and field classes, housing, on-ship meals and medical insurance
  • aid from home institutions may transfer
  • competitive need-based grants, merit scholarships and student assistant positions available through the program
  • additional costs may include flights, travel visas, vaccinations, textbooks, between-meal food and beverages, laundry and other expenses

As with all its study abroad programs, Notre Dame provides personal attention to those interested in Semester at Sea through an academic liaison who assists students as they plan for global learning experiences.

Semester at Sea

Enrolled students interested in Semester at Sea are encouraged to connect with the Office of Academic Affairs at least one year prior to intended embark. Email Tabitha Meeks, assistant director of the Office of Academic Affairs, at

Traditional study abroad opportunities also are available through the College’s partnership with the University Study Abroad Consortium.

Those who are interested in becoming students at Notre Dame can complete an online inquiry form.

About Semester at Sea

Semester at Sea was established in 1963 and features a global network of more than 65,000 alumni. About 600 students from 250 colleges and universities worldwide study aboard during fall and spring semester voyages with Semester at Sea.

ISE partners with maritime management companies, Cruise Management International and Ship Supply Group combined to provide the officers and crew to manage the ship.

Details are online at