Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome

Classical studies at the 'centro'

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The Premier North American Center for the Study of the Classical World in Italy

The Intercollegiate Center for Classical Studies in Rome (ICCS) was established in 1965 by representatives of ten American colleges and universities; the number of member institutions has now grown to over 100. It provides undergraduate students with an opportunity in Rome to study ancient history, archaeology, Greek and Latin literature, Italian language, and ancient art. ICCS has received generous aid from the Danforth Foundation, The Old Dominion Foundation, The Mellon Foundation, and the David and Lucille Packard Foundation, as well as the continuing support of a consortium of colleges and universities and contributions from former students.


Location: Rome, Italy

Term: Fall, Spring

Dates: August 31, 2017 - December 22, 2017 (Fall); January 25, 2018 - May 13, 2018 (Spring)

Application Deadline: March 1 (Fall and Academic Year), October 1 (Spring)

Academic Theme(s): Classical studies

Credit Type: Duke Credit

Eligibility: Non-Duke students are welcome to apply.

Duke Affiliation: Duke Department of Classical Studies

Housing: Dormitory

GEO Advisor: Alayne Wood

ICCS Administration & Member Institutions

A Managing Committee elected by the consortium colleges and universities determines the curriculum and selects the faculty, students, and scholarship recipients. The Managing Committee has arranged for administration of the Intercollegiate Center to be handled by Duke University's Global Education Office for Undergraduates. 


The curriculum is structured differently from that in many American colleges and universities. Students are expected to take four courses, which is a minimum and normal load; a few students take five courses. A major part of the academic work is a required comprehensive and integrated two-credit course called The Ancient City

Weekly sample schedule for all students




Required Course

CLST 341A-1 / 341A-2
The Ancient City
2.0 course credits, required

This required comprehensive and integrated course is a major part of the academic work for the program. It is a two-credit course which requires as much class and study time as two semester courses. It covers Roman archaeology and topography, aspects of social and urban history of Rome, and Roman civilization. Frequent site visits and explorations, intensive museum tours and lectures, and wider-ranging trips based on the Professor-in-Charge's area's of expertise outside Rome are included as part of the course. In the recent past, Campania and Sicily have been the focus of extended and focused study. Because The Ancient City course depends on prior knowledge of Roman history, students are expected to prepare themselves by taking a Roman history course or by careful reading on the subject.

View syllabus

Elective Courses

Students choose remaining courses from the following:


Intermediate Latin
LATIN 203A-1
1 course credit

Advanced Latin
LATIN 301A-1
1 course credit

Intermediate Greek
GREEK 203A-1
1 course credit

Advanced Greek
1 course credit

Renaissance and Baroque Art History
1 course credit

Elementary Italian
ITALIAN 101A (No other level of Italian is available.)
1 course credit

Please note: The text for the Italian course is available at the Centro and is a different edition than the one used in the U.S. Therefore, it is recommended that you not purchase the book before arriving in Rome and that you use one of the books available there. Also, for this course, please have a small, portable English-Italian dictionary.)

The Latin and Greek courses avoid excessive concentration on commonly read works. Students who wish to take an independent study or directed reading may do so, providing it is supervised by a member of the faculty at the student's own college or university. This work will not appear on an ICCS transcript, and no responsibility for it will be taken by the ICCS faculty.


Academic Credit

Each semester allows about fifteen weeks of instruction and provides one full semester of academic credit. Duke University provides an official Duke transcript of work completed satisfactorily. Students normally receive 4 or 5 course credits (equivalent to 16 to 20 semester hours or 24 to 30 quarter units). The Ancient City course carries two course credits. All other courses offer one course credit. 

Final assignment of credit is the responsibility of the student's home college or university. The reporting of courses and grades and the extent of the materials and periods covered in the ICCS curriculum have been entirely acceptable to students' home colleges and universities.


The Library

Funds provided by the Old Dominion Foundation purchased the initial library in the 1960s. The holdings have increased since then through several generous gifts. Fundamental was the personal collection of the late Professor Brooks Otis, founder of ICCS, which was presented to the library through the generosity of the Packard Foundation.

Over the years, the library has grown with the addition of the personal collections of the late John Rowe Workman and the late John Stambaugh, former Chairman of the Managing Committee and the initiator of the Ancient City course; the late Brian Aitken, who studied at the Centro in 1972, and the late Miranda Marvin, who sent many Wellesley students to the Centro.

In addition to these gifts, ICCS continuously makes new acquisitions and has benefitted from generous gifts from Hollis Hurd (Spring '70) and the Corning Incorporated Foundation. There also is a small collection on Italian culture and a modest art history collection. Other libraries in Rome, including limited access to the American Academy library, can be made available for student use.

Connect to the ICCS Library online catalog.


The ICCS faculty is chosen each year from scholars teaching classics, history, and art history in colleges and universities in the United States and Canada. The usual faculty complement is a Professor-in-Charge, two Associate or Assistant Professors, and an advanced graduate student as Resident Instructor. Because of the changeover in faculty each year, the program is constantly invigorated and benefits from a constant flow of new ideas. In addition, other faculty are hired in Italy to teach Renaissance and Baroque Art History and Elementary Italian.

2017-2018 Faculty

Jeremy Hartnett, P.I.C.

Jeremy Hartnett head shot


Jeremy Hartnett is Associate Professor of Classics at Wabash College, where he holds the Anne and Andrew T. Ford Chair in the Liberal Arts.  A transformational experience as a Centrista (Spring 1995) convinced him to pursue graduate work in Classics and to find reasons to return regularly to Rome and Italy.  Following a Ph.D. at the University of Michigan in Classical Art and Archaeology and a post-doc year at Oberlin, Jeremy returned to teach at his alma mater, Wabash College, in 2004.  Particular passions at Wabash include bringing the ancient world to life (mock hoplite battles, a suovetaurilia, and rowing lessons, e.g.), playing drums and trumpet in the pep band, and introducing students to times, places, people, food, and languages well beyond what usually surrounds them.  He served a delightful year as Associate Professor at the Centro in 2008-2009, has led at least eight additional academic study experiences in Italy, and has participated in excavations at Paestum and Oppido Lucano.

In his research, Jeremy uses material culture to write the history of everyday Romans.  His first book, The Roman Street: Urban Life and Society in Pompeii, Herculaneum, and Rome (Cambridge UP, 2017), is overpriced, but has plenty of good pictures.  It seeks to refill city thoroughfares with all manner of people, animals, activities, and dramas, from politicians preening in parades to rabble-rousers raising a ruckus in response to a wrong.  The next big project will either try to paint a more fine-grained portrait of the Roman sub-elite or will tackle how Romans made sense of themselves and their world through what they heard and the sounds they made.

Sonia Sabnis

Sonia Sabnis

Sonia Sabnis is Associate Professor of Classics and Humanities at Reed College in Portland, Oregon. She studied at the Centro in Fall 1996 and has returned to Rome at regular intervals since: these stints include studying Latin with Fr. Reginald Foster and Latin palaeography at the American Academy. She received her B.A. from Columbia and her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, all in Classics. Her research centers on the imperial authors Apuleius and Lucian with topics ranging from slavery to reception to discourse particles. A recent essay on Robert Graves’ translation of Apuleius and Lawrence of Arabia (the man, not the film, although she loves that too) was called a “pleasant highlight” by a TLS reviewer.

At Reed she enjoys teaching Greek and Latin at all levels. In Rome as in Portland, when not teaching, she will probably be found exploring the city’s hippermost vegetarian restaurants. She also loves to travel, particularly to places where there are antiquities and/or donkeys.

Mitch Brown

Mitch Brown

Mitch Brown received his PhD in Classics from the University of Cincinnati in 2016 and his BA from Wabash College in 2010. He was also a Centrista in 2008. His research interests include Greek and Roman drama, performance, and reception studies. In particular, he studies ancient comedy by combining material, historical, and textual evidence to understand plays as both cultural events and pieces of literature. In both his teaching and his research he strives to approach the Greek and Roman world not as a set of static objects and texts, but a dynamic space in which buildings, artwork, and writing affected and were affected by their various audiences. His time at the Centro as a student was instrumental in his development of this outlook. In addition to ancient drama, Mitch is also very interested in ancient sports, southern Italian vase painting, and the development of Julius Caesar as an ideological symbol in both the Roman Empire and later periods. 

Melissa Huber

Melissa Huber

Melissa Huber is a Ph.D. candidate in Classical Studies at Duke University with interests in Roman history and topography.  She received her AB in Classics and BS in Mathematics from the College of Charleston, and her MA in the City of Rome (Classics) from the University of Reading.  Studying abroad in Rome as an undergraduate inspired her to pursue graduate work in Classics and she has been lucky enough to return to the eternal city on several occasions for research and teaching.  She is currently working on a dissertation entitled "Monumentalizing Infrastructure: The City and People of Rome in the Time of Claudius,” which uses digital visualization technology to explore the visual and practical impact that building during Claudius' reign had on the people of Rome. 

Melissa is looking forward to a wonderful year living at the Centro, teaching Intermediate Greek, and contributing to the Ancient City course.

Barbara Castaldo

Italian Language Instructor

Barbara Castaldo (Laurea, Università La Sapienza di Roma; M.A., Columbia University; Ph.D., New York University) is specialized in contemporary Italian literature with a doctoral thesis on Italian author Pier Paolo Pasolini (awarded Premio Pasolini in 2009). Her research interests include law and literature scholarship and comparative literature. She has published articles on contemporary Italian authors (Sandro Veronesi, Marco Lodoli, Ennio Flaiano, Pier Paolo Pasolini), and has appeared in a number of TV documentaries and radio interviews for Rai Storia (Italy), Arte TV (France-Germany), Österreich 1 (Austria). She is currently working on a book on Pier Paolo Pasolini’s legal trials. She has taught courses of Italian language at all levels and has been teaching Italian at ICCS since 2005.

Paul Tegmeyer

Art History Instructor

Paul Tegmeyer began studying art history as an undergraduate at New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, New Mexico, where he was raised. After moving to Italy, actually l'Aquila, outside Rome, in 1983, he began graduate school at Temple University in Rome, and then Philadelphia. He later entered the Ph.D. program at the University of Pennsylvania. His area of specialization is the Italian Renaissance.

He began teaching the Renaissance. to Baroque Rome course at ICCS from 1990-92 and again from 1997 on. He also been teaching at John Cabot University in Rome since 1991. Here he has had the opportunity to expand his repertoire beyond the Italian Renaissance, teaching courses on Ancient and Medieval Rome, Baroque art, as well as monographic courses on Renaissance Rome; Raphael; Michelangelo; Bernini; et al. Since 1997 he has also conducted the Rome Seminar for the Smithsonian Institute.

His research focuses primarily on various aspects of Roman Renaissance art (Raphael, Pollaiuolo, Michelangelo, et al.). He is also now in the early stages of preparing with other colleagues, a “Guide to Renaissance Rome”.




Located in a four-story building on one of the main streets of the Janiculum, the Center is ten minutes by bus from the Piazza Venezia and downtown Rome. It is close to the American Academy in Rome with which it maintains cordial relations. The building is owned by an order of nuns, the Suore Infermiere dell'Addolorata, and contains student bedrooms, classrooms, a library, offices, dining rooms, and a kitchen.

Outside is a small and pleasant garden. The neighborhood is residential with apartment buildings, small shops, cafes, and services.


Students will be assigned rooms at the Center (mostly doubles). The Center can accommodate 36 students.

Because the Center is small, and all students are together for meals and at least the Ancient City course, the living situation can be very intense and generally requires adjustment on everyone's part. Students are urged to have a positive outlook and to spend available time outside of the Center.


Three meals a day are provided at the Center, Monday through Friday. Other meals are at individual student's expense and are not included in the program fees.


ICCS operates two semesters each academic year, one from early September to mid-December, the other from late-January to the mid-May (there are 7-14 days of breaks each term). Please see calendars below.

  • SPRING 2018
  • FALL 2018
  • SPRING 2019


Spring 2018

January 25-26  Arrival of students at the Center
January 29 First day of classes
February 9 Last day to change courses
March 10-18 Field trip to Sicily
March 18-25 Spring break
March 26 Classes resume
April 14-21 Field trip to Campania
April 23 Classes resume
May 4 Last day of classes
May 7 First day of exams
May 11 Last day of exams
May 13 Students MUST leave the Center by noon

FALL 2018

Fall 2018

August 30-31 Arrival of students at the Center
September 3 First day of classes
September 14 Last day to change courses
October 6-14 Field trip to Sicily
October 14-21 Fall break
October 22 Classes resume
November 10-17  Field trip to Campania
November 19 Classes resume
November 22 Thanksgiving dinner
December 7 Last day of classes
December 10 First day of exams
December 14 Last day of exams
December 16 Students MUST leave the Center by noon
December 21 Closing of the CENTER


Spring 2019

January 24-25  Arrival of students at the Center
January 28 First day of classes
February 8 Last day to change courses
March 9-17 Field trip to Sicily
March 17-24 Spring break
March 25 Classes resume
April 6-14 Field trip to Campania
April 15 Classes resume
May 3 Last day of classes
May 6 First day of exams
May 10 Last day of exams
May 12 Students MUST leave the Center by noon


Fall 2018 or Spring 2019

Estimates are based on previous years’ programs and the current exchange rate. All costs are subject to change.

  Duke Students Non-Duke Students
Tuition $26,880 $26,880
Program Fee $4,495 $4,495
Transcript Fee N/A $40
Other Costs

Other Costs - Fall

Other Costs - Spring

Other Costs - Fall

Other Costs - Spring

TOTAL (Estimated) $36,005 $36,345

Explanation of Costs

Scholarships & Financial Aid




The Benedetta and Giancarlo Galassi-Beria Scholarship Fund provides for students in need of financial support to study at ICCS. Scholarships have ranged from $500 to $10,000. In recent years no student has had to forego a semester at the Centro because of the cost.

In order to be considered, students must submit the Financial Need Assessment Form, completed and signed by a financial aid officer from the home institution, verifying eligibility and amount of need. Students applying for this scholarship must file a current FAFSA application at their home institution. The Financial Need Assessment Form must be submitted with the program application, by the application deadline.

The Managing Committee will make admissions decisions and then review scholarship applications. Students are informed of scholarship awards within four weeks of the application deadline.

All information received from financial aid offices is kept strictly confidential and seen only by the Managing Committee and a limited number of staff in Duke University's Global Education Office.


Financial Aid

Duke students receiving financial aid are eligible for aid for this program (work-study funds must be converted to loans). Students are individually responsible for making the necessary arrangements with the Office of Undergraduate Financial Aid and the Bursar. Non-Duke students are not eligible to receive financial aid at Duke and should contact their home institutions for financial aid information. 

Duke Financial Aid Office

Duke Bursar’s Office


The Centro is ably managed by a small, dedicated staff.


For general inquiries about the program, please contact:

Susan Pratt

GEO Asst. Director & Regional Manager


Deadline: March 1, 2018 (Fall semester) or October 1, 2018 (Spring semester)

This program does NOT have rolling admission: Admissions decisions will be made after the published deadline, and on a space-available basis after that. Applications must be received by the deadline to be considered.

Priority: Applicants must be currently registered undergraduates majoring in classics or classical history/civilization or in archaeology or art history with strong classical interests and background with at least a B average. Preference will be given to those students with a background in Roman History and who are prepared to take courses in Latin and/or ancient Greek at the intermediate level or higher. Priority for spaces goes to students who are undergraduates at one of the ICCS member colleges or universities. When space permits, qualified and currently registered undergraduate students from non-member institutions may be accepted at an additional fee. 

Minimum GPA: Priority will be given to students with high academic standing (normally with at least a 3.0 GPA). The minimum cumulative grade point average (GPA) required for Duke students wishing to study away during the semester is 2.7 (3.0 for Pratt students) on a scale of 4.0. See Academics section for details.

Non-Duke students: Non-Duke students are welcome to apply for this program. You must be a degree-seeking student in good standing at an accredited college or university. Consult your university’s registrar and/or study away advisor for assistance with transfer credit. Students who are not matriculated at a college or university are not eligible to participate in Duke’s study away programs.

Physical Requirements: The program is physically strenuous. The on-site investigations fundamental to the Ancient City course entail extensive walking and some climbing, at times in inclement weather. Our experience has been that participants must be in good physical condition to be able to participate successfully. Therefore, we ask that applicants consider their general health, physical abilities, and stamina (including problems with diet and medications) before applying to this program.


Start your application early to ensure that it is complete by the deadline! Incomplete applications will not be forwarded to the program directors for consideration.

Submit the following items using MyGlobalEd:

  1. Online application
  2. Official transcript(s) from all colleges and universities attended.
  3. Personal statement, no longer than one page, explaining why you would like to participate on this program
  4. Two academic letters of recommendation (one from the ICCS Representative at your institution)
  5. ICCS Financial Need Assessment Form
  6. Home university approval form
  7. ICCS Questionnaire


Find out what current Centristi are up to in Rome, get the latest alumni news, find up-to-date information on reunion events, and even see what's on the menu at the Centro this week (recipes included!) 

Go to ICCS News