Cornerstone Greece is a spring semester study abroad opportunity offered exclusively to select first-year students. Cornerstone Greece allows you to get a jump start on your international education—letting you experience international culture firsthand while supported by AU and international university partners. 

Students must maintain satisfactory academic performance and continue to meet the AU Abroad 3.00 GPA requirement. Students who fall below these requirements prior to going abroad could be withdrawn from Cornerstone Abroad.

In addition, any disciplinary action resulting in probation occurring after your admission into Cornerstone Abroad may result in American University rescinding and revoking your participation and program enrollment. In these cases, students will not receive a refund and will be responsible for any expenses incurred on your behalf prior to the date of withdrawal from the program.

AU Cornerstone has between 25 – 30 students. Reservations are accepted on a first-come, first served basis.

You can find a breakdown of the cost of the program on the program cost page.

The Cornerstone program is reserved for full time, first year degree-seeking students at AU; therefore, financial aid is available for those who qualify and may be applied to this program. For information about financing options, consult with your university financial aid counselor.

The courses provide students the opportunity for active learning, collaboration, teamwork, and interactive discussions. More information on the program courses is available on the curriculum page.

You have access to the Academic Support and Access Center (ASAC) on AU's campus. ASAC can be reached by phone at 202-885-3360. More information about ASAC accommodations and services is available online.

New requests for accommodation should follow the Three-Step process. Once students receive information from AU's ASAC regarding approved accommodations, Cornerstone staff will work with host institution to request accommodations for the semester abroad. Please be aware that we cannot guarantee that facilities or support services will be available in the same range and quality as on AU’s campus.

Students will travel to host institution from their "home" state/country. There are no group flight arrangements.

While students travel independently and there are no group flight arrangements, contact information will be provided and students are encouraged to connect with cohort members to take the same flight as other AU students if they flying out of the same airport.

You will have access to campus facilities. These include computer labs, library, fitness center, resource centers, clubs, campus events, etc.

There will be a pre-departure orientation at AU, as well as an on site orientation at host institution.

ACT requires that you will need a visa during your time in Greece.  You must apply for a visa (and apply for a residence permit after you arrive in Greece) at least 10 to 12 weeks before you arrive to ACT. AU Abroad and ACT will assist you with the visa application materials but it is your responsibility to apply for the visa.

AU Cornerstone students are a part of a University College cohort and will be housed with that cohort for the entirety of fall semester. Cohort placement is determined by your chosen Complex Problems seminar. Not all members of your UC cohort will be in AU Cornerstone. We will connect students after the deadline with others in their cohort. If you'd like to be with another AU Cornerstone student in your cohort, you can match with them during the roommate matching process. Students in living-learning communities will room with other students in the same cohort.

University College housing is mandatory for Cornerstone students.

In the Spring, ACT provides off campus accommodation in safe residential areas near downtown Thessaloniki and a short drive from the ACT campus. The housing locations are well served by the city’s public bus system, with buses running at 10-15 minute intervals. The housing is in close proximity to supermarkets, pharmacies, banks, and post offices. In addition, ACT provides a basic bus service to and from campus once per day.  An ACT Residence Assistant (RA) resides at each housing location and is there to help students settle in and get to know Thessaloniki by organizing outings and planning activities. 

Students can visit any number of sites, detailed on the Excursions page.

DC law and American University policy states that all students must have health insurance - through their parents or through AU. If you have insurance by way of your parent's plan or your own, you can waive AU Health Insurance through your myAU.american.edu portal. More information about the Student Health Center and insurance requirements is available on the website.

Students will be enrolled in AU's Emergency Medical Insurance for international travel. However, this only covers students during the program dates and in the country of the program site (and is for emergencies only). Students will have additional medical insurance through ACT for healthcare within Greece.

Veteran Affairs does not allow students to use Yellow Ribbon benefits for study abroad programs.

There is an option to store your things on campus while you are abroad. AU in partnership with UPS offers storage for students who will be away over the spring and summer next year. You can inquire here for more details about this option. 

You are able to add your name to a waitlist by selecting the waitlist option on the UC and Cornerstone Reservation Form. There are no guarantees a spot will open, though you can still be included in University College. 

During the fall semester on American University's campus, Cornerstone students will live on AU's campus alongside the rest of the University College students. Cornerstone staff will work with you to get to know the other Cornerstone Greece students and get prepared to study abroad. To learn more about the steps taken during the Fall semester, check out our Fall Cornerstone Greece graphic.