Study Abroad

This summer, students from the USC Leonard Davis School and across the university will travel across the world to explore aging! Course topics range from how nutrition and food culture affect longevity to how psychology changes with aging and how death customs and ceremonies vary throughout ancient and modern societies. Want to join students on these exciting and educational adventures? Courses are available to outside individuals (requires enrolling as a limited-status student).

Contact Sara Robinson at to learn more!

GERO 493: Longevity and Death among Ancient and Modern European Populations

May 18 – May 21, 2020 on campus
May 26 – June 8, 2020 in Italy

This course is led by USC Leonard Davis School Associate Professor Susan Enguídanos and explores the discoveries of ancient humans and bodies that have been preserved to illuminate the connection between diet, health, and disease. The class will travel through Italy and Germany and explore the role of religion and culture in determining and defining death practices, ceremonies, and other customs. Class discussions and field trips will demonstrate the strong connection between religious and afterlife beliefs and body disposal practices. Cities on the itinerary include Milan, Bolzano, Florence, Volterra, Rome, Munich, and more.

GERO 494: Psychology of Adult Development

May 18 – May 22, 2020 on campus
May 23 – June 6, 2020 in Israel
Herzliya, Israel

This course, led by USC Leonard Davis School Professor Mara Mather and presented in conjunction with IDC Herzliya, examines how psychologists study thinking, memory, emotions, personality, and behavior and how people change throughout the adult lifespan. Students will learn about research and theory bearing on cognitive, personality, adaptive, and social processes throughout the adult life span and about applications of current research and theory to practical matters in the field of gerontology.

GERO 498: Nutrition, Genes, Longevity and Disease

May 19 – May 22, 2020 on campus
May 23 – June 12, 2020 in Italy
Genoa, Italy

This course examines the role of nutrition and genes and the impact each has on longevity and diseases, particularly diseases related to aging. It provides the opportunity to learn directly from internationally renowned expert and USC Leonard Davis School Professor Valter Longo, gain a global perspective on genetics and cultural attitudes toward aging, and experience a month-long immersion in the Mediterranean lifestyle.

GERO 499: Aging and Older Adults in Latin America

May 18 – 22, 2020 on campus
May 24 – 30, 2020 in Colombia
Medellín, Colombia

Travel to Colombia to volunteer with a program that provides opportunities to optimize the quality of life of older adults in the area through health promotion, disease prevention, social activities, and daily assistance and rehabilitation. This service-learning course provides students with a multifaceted perspective on the social, economic, health care, and environmental contexts experienced by older adults in Colombia, a Latin American country with a rapidly aging population.

GERO 488: Food, Culture, Disease and Longevity in Italy and in the Mediterranean

June 15 – July 4, 2020 in Italy
Florence, Italy

The course examines the history of food in the Mediterranean from the Roman times to the present with references to the rich and various historical, political, economic, social, and artistic past of the peninsula.