Serbia and Croatia

Peace & Conflict Studies

Earn college credit in Serbia and Croatia as you explore peace and post-conflict transformation, European Union policies and politics, youth activism and engagement in peacebuilding and conflict transformation. 

  • College Credit

  • Language

  • Peace, Politics, & Human Rights

WHY STUDY PEACE & CONFLICT IN SERBIA AND CROATIA?

Explore Belgrade’s important historical and cultural landmarks, from its days as the capital of Yugoslavia to its current role as the capital of Serbia and the largest city in Southeast Europe, home to activist groups and new social movements. Earn college credit through seminars and workshops about peace and post-conflict transformation and learn about the role of civil society, education, and politics in dealing with the legacies of a difficult past. Witness social justice and environmental activism in Serbia and visit the northern city of Novi Sad. In Croatia, you will visit the capital, Zagreb, and the Adriatic coast to learn about Croatia’s process of change after joining the European Union and the politics of minority rights, history, education, and the role of civil society and youth activism in peacebuilding and social change. 

Upon successful completion of this program, students will earn three college credits through The Experiment’s accredited partner institution, School for International Training.

LEARN BY DOING

The Experiment’s programs are designed to build skills that will help you succeed. In Serbia and Croatia, you will learn:  

TECHNICAL SKILLS 

  • Research 
  • Academic writing 
  • Writing 
  • Presentation 
  • Serbian language 
  • College prep 

 INTERPERSONAL SKILLS

  • Resourcefulness 
  • Intercultural communication and understanding 
  • Problem-solving 
  • Adaptability 
  • Relationship-building 
  • Critical thinking 

KNOW BEFORE YOU GO

  • Be prepared to be intellectually challenged by the course content and your learning community. Participants will be expected to complete required readings, assignments, exercises, and actively participate in course discussions.
  • Many people in the region have, to different degrees, experienced war, loss, trauma, and dislocation. The content theme of this program may be found to be emotionally heavy and politically sensitive. 
  • With global climate change, weather is becoming difficult to predict; summers are much warmer, though patterns can vary. 
  • Your families may cook continental-style food (heavier dishes of meat, potatoes, soups, salad, or fish). The open-air market overflows with fresh vegetables and fruits at very reasonable prices. There are health food stores in the larger cities.  
  • Explore Belgrade by public transit (and on foot!). You may commute 30-50 minutes a day.  
  • Access to the internet is limited and internet speeds and connectivity vary. 
  • The program has extensive contacts with the LGBTQ+ communities in the region, but some parts of Balkan society are relatively conservative. 
  • The diverse personal and social identities of participants may, in part, shape their experience abroad. In-country partners will discuss cultural norms and the local context during orientation. Please read Our approach to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for further information. All students will have a safe space within the program spaces and with the local staff and group leaders.  

AT A GLANCE

Program Availability

Filling

Program Date

Jul 1 - Jul 30

Prerequisite

None

Program Fee

TBD

Group Airfare Cost

TBD

WHAT'S INCLUDED
  • College credit
  • Meals
  • Lodging
  • All program activities
  • In-country transportation
  • Health insurance
  • Experienced group leaders

Sample Itinerary

This itinerary is only a sample and is subject to change. Because of factors such as group size and availability of in-country offerings such as festivals, your experience — including sites visited and the number of days spent in each location — may differ somewhat from the one presented below.

View Itinerary Details

Days 1-3

Orientation in Belgrade  

  • Learn about the history and culture of the city of Belgrade from local experts. 
  • Take a crash course in conversational Serbian language. 
  • Get to know other members of your group. 
  • Take a cooking workshop and learn about Serbian food and culture. 
  • Take a boat ride on the Sava and Danube rivers. 
  • Visit an Orthodox church, mosque, and synagogue, to learn about religion and culture in the Balkans. 

Days 4-18

Thematic Focus 

  • Participate in academic sessions introducing peace and conflict studies in global and local frameworks. 
  • Visit Belgrade’s civil society groups and learn about memory politics in the aftermath of the socialist era. 
  • Learn about youth activism and visit the Youth Initiative for Human Rights.  
  • Learn about new social movements and environmental activism.  
  • Take a day trip to the thriving urban art scene of Novi Sad. 

Days 19-25

Excursion to Croatia 

  • Walk the cobblestone streets of Zagreb, Croatia’s capital city. 
  • Visit the Adriatic Coast and the city of Rijeka, the 2021 European Capital of Culture. 
  • Visit the islands of Krk, the largest island of the Adriatic, or Cres, with its majestic cliffs along the coastline and medieval hilltop towns. 

Days 26-27

Program Reflection and Wrap-up in Belgrade 

  • Reflect with your group on your experiences during the program. 
  • Learn how to articulate your Serbia and Croatia learning experience on your college admissions essays and in conversation with college admission counselors.  
  • Participate in a group photo exhibit on your perceptions of peace and post-conflict transformation in Serbia and Croatia. 

Day 28

Departure 

Program experts

College credit-bearing programs are led by accomplished and experienced faculty approved by the School for International Training (SIT). Faculty of record typically live in the country of study and are responsible for instructional content, classroom and field experiences, and daily program operations. They work in close consultation with SIT’s Dean of Faculty and Experiment staff team and group leaders to craft an engaging, college-level curriculum and design field and internship experiences that match student needs and interests.

Orli Fridman, PhD

Orli is the Academic Director for SIT’s study abroad programs in Serbia, Bosnia, and Kosovo, as well as the Chair of SIT Graduate Insititute’s MA in Social Justice and Advocacy. She received her PhD at George Mason University’s School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (2006). She also holds a BA in political science and Middle Eastern studies from Hebrew University of Jerusalem and an MA in Middle Eastern and African History from Tel Aviv University. Her interdisciplinary research focuses on peace studies and memory studies with emphasis on comparative conflict studies. She has been writing extensively about memory politics and memory activism in Serbia and the successor states of the former Yugoslavia and in the Middle East.

Orli has been involved in political education for the past 20 years. She was trained as a facilitator for groups in conflict and facilitated group encounters for participants from Israel/Palestine, Cyprus, and the successor states of the former Yugoslavia. She teaches in the Politics Department at the Belgrade-based Faculty of Media and Communications (FMK), where she heads the Center for Comparative Conflict Studies (CFCCS), an educational organization dedicated to the comparative analysis of societies in conflict. Her recent publications include “‘Hashtag Memory Activism’: Online Commemorations and Online Memory Activism” in Observing Memories (2019); “Conflict Memory and Memory Activism: Dealing with Contested Pasts” (2020) in The Palgrave Encyclopedia of Peace and Conflict Studies; “Peace formation from below: The ‘mirëdita, dobardan!’ festival as an alternative to everyday nationalism” (2020) in Nations and Nationalism; “Online Transnational Memory Activism and Commemoration: The Case of the White Armband Day” in Agency in Transnational Memory Politics (2020).