Bologna Hip-Hop

Bologna Hip-Hop Fact Sheet

Apply now to reserve your place in the Bologna, Italy, Hip-Hop project.
DATES: June 21 – July 18, 2019

PROGRAM COST: $4,495 plus airfare and tuition for 3-6 credits paid directly to Winston-Salem State University or North Carolina Central University; $4,995 for students of other universities, including three transferable credits from the University of Jamestown – but $450 less for students who don’t need the credits.


FOCUS: Hip-hop performance or journalism specialty tracks, resulting in a website and an original theatrical performance.

COOPERATING UNIVERSITIES: Winston-Salem State University, North Carolina Central University, University of Jamestown.

CONTACT: Questions about the Bologna Hip-Hop Project? Contact Program Director Stacie Chandler at:

Hip Hop Meets the Renaissance

The influence of hip-hop spans around the world, from the urban American cities where it was born to Bologna, a past capital of the Italian Renaissance. Students will explore this intersection of black music, dance and street poetry, reborn in a in a European crossroads steeped in culture.

Hip-hop adds a new vernacular to ieiMedia’s study abroad program. Under the guidance of award-winning journalism and theatre faculty from Winston-Salem State, North Carolina Central and Penn State University, students will have a dual opportunity to perform hip-hop while studying and producing multimedia stories about it in text, video, photography and sound.

Video on ieiMedia's 2015 Hip-Hop program in Italy:

Learn the storytelling skills of foreign correspondents in one of Europe’s most cosmopolitan and student-filled cities.

Our days and nights will be structured to provide group and individual learning experiences in multimedia, writing and performance.

See how Hip-Hop has been embraced across the world.

Your study tour will balance intensive practice in a specialty track of your choice (journalism or performance), with daily “survival” Italian lessons and a guided exploration of the history and evolution of hip-hop. Plus, you will have free time to research, perform and savor in this vibrant region of Italy.

Our work week is packed, and there might be one weekend assignment, but on a couple of extended weekends, students will be free to travel in small or large groups to other destinations in Italy.

The four weeks of instruction will include approximately 16 hours of “survival Italian” that will have you ordering food and wine in a restaurant, making purchases, asking for directions and using Italian in personal introductions for conversations, flirting and interviews. Students will have the aid of Italian interpreters to help them complete their journalistic stories. Those with intermediate to advanced knowledge of Italian will be offered special training.

Academic Credit

Students enrolled in the 2019 Hip-Hop Meets the Renaissance program can earn academic credits directly from WSSU or NCCS if that is their home campus, while students from other campuses can earn three credits from our partner institution, the University of Jamestown. Our goal is for every student to produce a portfolio piece in their chosen area of concentration. We’ll produce a website and an original theatrical performance.

Performance is part of your ieiMedia option.


Students will stay in dorms with single rooms, private baths and one meal per day in a dining room. Free Wi-Fi is provided.


Students should bring their own laptop computers and digital or video cameras and recorders as well. The program will provide some equipment as needed.

Travel Opportunities

Bologna is magnificently located in one of Italy’s most exciting regions, with Florence, Venice, Rome, Milan, the Italian lakes and the Adriatic coast an easy day trip by train or bus. The Emilia Romagna region itself is well worth exploring: It’s home to some of Italy’s top food destinations and restaurants; to the luxury car empires of Ferrari, Lamborghini and Maserati; and to the elegant Renaissance cities of Ferrara and Ravenna, known for their palaces, artistic heritage and bike-friendly medieval lanes.

Speak Italian and perfect your multimedia skills.


(Subject to enrollments/budget)

Stacie Chandler (program director/copy editor) is the student adviser for the School of Theatre at Penn State University. She coordinates the school’s U.K. study abroad program at the Theatre Academy of London. She has a newspaper journalism degree from Northwestern University and has worked as a reporter, copy editor and editor at dailies and monthlies in Colorado Springs; Ogden, Utah; and Pittsburgh.

Lona D. Cobb, Ph.D., (academic director/writing) is a professor in the Communication and Media Studies Department at Winston-Salem State University, where she has taught “Journalism Writing for Print and Online,” “Study Abroad in the Discipline” (taking students to South Africa, Zanzibar, Kenya and Italy) and other core CMS courses. She has been a member of the ieiMedia faculty since 2009. In 2015, she and colleagues from WSSU and North Carolina Central University created ieiMedia’s first multimedia program, which introduced an interdisciplinary approach to hip-hop in Florence, Italy.

Stephanie Howard, Ph.D. (theatre/dance) "Dr. Asabi" is an associate professor of theatre at North Carolina Central University, where she chairs the Department of Theatre and Dance. She has received the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival directing award (2017 and 2015) and NCCU College of Liberal Arts Awards in Outstanding Teaching, Scholarship and Playwriting. A graduate of North Carolina A&T State University and Wake Forest University, Asabi earned her doctorate at Regent University in communications and theatre.

Curt Chandler (multimedia) teaches multimedia reporting and entrepreneurial journalism at Penn State University. In 2017 and 2018, he was the multimedia coach for ieiMedia’s Oslo Rocks! music reporting program in Norway. He has more than 25 years of industry experience as a visual journalist, writer, editor and online producer. He taught photojournalism at Duquesne University and was the editor for online innovation at in Pittsburgh before becoming a full-time educator in 2007.

David Shabazz is an associate chair in the School of the Humanities and Performing Arts and an assistant professor of journalism at Kentucky State University. He teaches introductory and advanced courses in radio, television and new media. His area of interest is radio and television broadcasting, and he advises the student broadcasting club. Areas of research interest include African-American communication, sports communication and popular culture communication.

View complete faculty biographies on our Hip-Hop Meets the Renaissance Faculty Page.

Program Cost

Students of Winston-Salem State University or North Carolina Central University pay $4,495 plus airfare and tuition for 3-6 credits; students of other universities pay $4,995 for three transferable credits from the University of Jamestown. Graduates and students who don’t need credits pay $450 less, and there’s a $150 “early-bird” discount for everyone who pays in full, by check, by Jan. 15.

Financial Aid

Students studying abroad for the summer term have limited financial aid options, but Pell grant recipients are encouraged to apply and receive our help in applying for a Gilman Study Abroad Scholarship ranging from $2,500 to $5,000. Check with your school’s financial aid office and your study abroad offices to find out if other assistance is available. More information on financial aid is available here.

Apply now to reserve your place in the Hip-Hop Meets the Renaissance program. Or contact Program Director Stacie Chandler at: Students must fill out the online application and include contact information for two references using the “Apply Now” link. A $100 application fee is required with the application but will be applied in full to your program fees or refunded if you are not accepted into the program. Application deadline: March 1, 2019.

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