Semester at Sea
- Eligibility Requirements
- 2.5 cumulative GPA
- Class standing: Sophomore, junior, senior
- Restrictions: None, open to all SUNY students
- Program Information
Since 1963, Semester at Sea has brought college students, world-class faculty, and international experts together to travel, learn, and grow on board a campus unlike any other. On the MV World Odyssey, the shipboard community shares their expertise and experience with one another to create an immersive, inclusive, and boundary-crossed learning environment while stopping in 10–12 countries each semester.
Check out the Semester at Sea website to learn more and check out their YouTube channel to watch the many videos they have diving in to the Semester at Sea experience. On board you will find nine classrooms, a fitness center, four dining options, two cafes, a library, a pool, a wellness center, and a student union. There are also places on the ship to do laundry and to get salon services done (i.e. getting a haircut, manicure, shave, etc).
Students spend an average of 45 days throughout their semester in-country. When docked in port, opportunities range from service projects, to historical site visits, to exchanges with locals, to homestays.
- Academic Information
Academic programming on Semester at Sea promotes a global, hands-on, comparative approach that connects clearly articulated learning outcomes with faculty expertise for each voyage itinerary. Global Studies, is a core course (three credits), and is required of all students. This course provides a broad and comparative exploration of the interconnected and interdependent world. In addition to Global Studies, Semester at Sea students select 3–4 three-credit courses across a wide range of disciplines, with up to 72 courses to choose from. Typically one-third of the courses are lower-division and two-thirds upper-division, constituting a variety of topics representing faculty expertise and voyage relevance.
Colorado State University (CSU) serves as the academic partner to Semester at Sea. Semester at Sea students sailing with SUNY Plattsburgh will have their CSU transcript automatically sent to SUNY Plattsburgh for processing. A supplement transcript will then be created and mailed to the home SUNY campus.
- Programs & Majors
- Broadcast journalism
- Business administration
- Communication studies
- Environmental geoscience/science/studies
- Fitness/wellness leadership
- Political science
The MV World Odyssey is the Semester at Sea campus. Students stay in double or triple cabins, much like an on-campus dormitory. All student cabins are equipped with a TV, mini-refrigerator, closets, drawers, a restroom (shower, toilet, shelf space), and a safe shared between cabin mates. Linens, towels and cabin cleaning are provided daily by cabin stewards. The MV World Odyssey meets the International Maritime Organization’s SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea), U.S. Coast Guard, and U.S. Public Health requirements, as well as all other statutory standards.
- Support Services
Each voyage brings together a new, diverse group of people from all different walks of life. The community represents all ages, races, cultures and sexual orientations, and up to 200 multinational crew members representing 50 nationalities adds to this rich mix. Semester at Sea takes pride on its ability to connect people from various parts of the world. The community supports all individuals and respects diversity of viewpoint. The students have access to all the support services available on a traditional land-based campus, including dedicated resident directors, mental health counselors, and medical professionals.
Learn more about Community Life and Support Services.
Learn more about Health & Safety at Sea
Financing a study abroad program is one of the most important aspects to consider before applying. Please refer to the budget sheet below to review a detailed cost estimate for the program, which includes costs you are billed for through SUNY Plattsburgh, as well as those you must plan for, but pay directly, such as a flight, visas, and vaccinations. Estimates are subject to change at any time. If you have questions about the estimate, please contact the Global Education Office.
Financial aid in the form of scholarships, aid (NYS TAP, Federal PELL, etc.), and loans, may be applied to study abroad programs. It is important that you visit the financial aid office at your home campus to discuss your eligibility prior to applying. Please share the cost estimate for your program with your financial aid office.
SUNY Plattsburgh students are able to apply for various SUNY Plattsburgh scholarships each semester. Scholarship applications can be accessed as an optional component of your study abroad application. Please keep in mind that scholarship and study abroad application deadlines are due on the same date.
All SUNY students are eligible to apply for scholarships through Semester at Sea, and we highly encourage you to do so. Any scholarship awarded through Semester at Sea will be visible to you on your portal with Semester at Sea and will be reduced from your "program differential" on the cost estimate sheet, found below.
After acceptance, all students will be asked to pay a $350 program acceptance fee to Plattsburgh to commit to your Semester at Sea voyage. Dates on committing to the program are found below under application information. As a SUNY student, the $1,000 deposit with Semester at Sea is waived.
All students participating in a Plattsburgh program are automatically enrolled and billed for a SUNY international health insurance policy through United Health Care (UHC).
- Application Information
The first step of the application process is to complete the SUNY Plattsburgh study abroad application and submit all additional materials, which include official transcripts, academic references, and a study statement. You will also be linked to the Semester at Sea application. When entering your home campus in the Semester at Sea application portal, you should not be asked to pay an application fee. This is waived by entering your SUNY campus, if you are asked to submit an application fee, please reach out to [email protected].
Once your application is complete and has been reviewed, students will be sent additional instructions on how to move forward in their application process. It is important that you complete your application materials in this order because if you do not, it could delay your acceptance into the program.
Note that applications are opened 12-24 months prior to your program starting. If you complete your application early, Plattsburgh can only offer you a conditional acceptance into the program until closer to your program start date. Conditional is based on maintaining the required GPA, good judicial standing, having a passport, and meeting future deadlines.
- March 15 for fall (extensions are granted)
- October 1 for spring (extensions are granted on a limited basis)
- April 15 for fall voyages
- October 5 for spring voyages