The Catholic University of America

Frequently Asked Questions

Institutes and ProgramsSummer Law Abroad | Cracow Program

How do I apply?
What are the eligibility requirements?
Do I need a visa to participate in the program?
I am a Polish student who participated  in the program. How do I get my grades?
What is the duration of the program?
Who participates in the program?
How much does it cost to participate  in the program?
How do I make arrangements  for my overseas flight and what will it cost?
How do I get to Cracow?
When and where are classes scheduled?  How important is class attendance?
When can students purchase textbooks?
How accessible are the library and computer facilities? Are any meals provided?
How are roommates assigned?
What are the physical facilities like in Cracow, in terms of air conditioning, elevators, getting around the city?
What kind of financial aid is available?
How much spending money should I take?
Can I get into the Bratniak before June 16th?
Do many students travel before, after, or during the program?
What field trips are part of the program?
How can I aquire an internship in Poland?


How do I apply?

Applications will be available on-line at in early December 2017. 

What are the eligibility requirements?
An applicant must be in good standing and anticipate having completed one year of full or part-time law school by Friday, May 18, 2018, to be eligible to apply. Prior to the start of the program, a letter must be received from the Registrar or Academic Dean's office stating that the student is in good standing and eligible to participate. U.S. law students from non-ABA accredited law schools are also eligible to apply if their home law school has been granted the power to confer the J.D. degree by the appropriate governmental  authority in the unapproved law school's jurisdiction, or graduates of the non-ABA approved law school are permitted to sit for the bar examination in the jurisdiction in which the school is located.

Do I need a visa  to participate in the program?
Americans  do not need a visa to study for up to 90 days in Poland. A current, valid passport is required, and you must submit a copy of the photo page of your passport. If you do not already have a passport, apply for one at your earliest convenience. Be sure to allow sufficient processing time. If you do have a passport, check the expiration date and renew if necessary. Your passport expiration date should be six months beyond the date on which you intend to return home. If your passport is not an American passport, different rules may apply. The Law School is able to assist non-American  passport holders in obtaining the necessary paperwork  to apply for a visa. There is no cost for the visa to study in Poland. For additional information, please visit the State Department  website, or contact us at

I am a Polish student who participated in the program. How  do I receive my grades?
Polish students will receive a certificate with the courses and grades received for each. These are usually mailed out in late September.

What is the duration of the program?
The program is four weeks long, from June 16 to July 18, 2018. Students should plan to arrive on Saturday, June 16th and leave after 3:00 p.m. on Wednesday, July 18th. The program closing ceremony will be held in the morning of July 18th, unless the schedule must be adjusted for morning exams.

Who participates in the program?

American and Canadian law students, Polish law students and European LL.M. students all study together. In 2017, the program enrolled 13 participants, four of whom came from the U.S. schools: two Catholic University students, one from Widener Law School, and, one from Western State University College of Law, Calif., and nine Polish students, three of whom are pursing the CUA-JU LL.M. in American Law. In summer 2016, eighteen students participated in the program; the student body consisted of five American law students and one LL.M. student, all from Catholic University, and 13 Polish law students (one of whom was working on the CUA-JU LL.M. in American Law) who came from different law schools through Poland. In Summer of 2015, eighteen American (all from CUA with the exception of one Fordham University law student) and seventeen Polish students participated in the program. In the Summer of 2014, fourteen students enrolled in Catholic University's JD Program participated in the Cracow Program. In 2013, seventeen American students participated in the program; eleven students were from CUA and six came from other U.S. law schools: Liberty, Ohio Northern, Vermont, Texas Wesleyan, Geroge Washington and Univ. of Baltimore. In the Summer of 2014, eighteen Polish law students joined the Cracow Program, while in 2013, nineteen Polish law students participated in the program. In the past, students have participated from the following schools: American, Ave Maria, Boston College, Chicago-Kent, Cleveland Marshall, Detroit Mercy, Cooley, Fordham, Georgetown, George Washington, Illinois, Harvard, Loyola, Montana, New York, Notre Dame, Pepperdine, St. John's, Suffolk, Syracuse, William Mitchell and more. Polish students have come from the Universities of Torun, Lodz, Warsaw, Lublin, Szczecin, Wroclaw & Poznan.

How much does it cost to participate in the program?

The cost of the program is estimated to be between $7,000-$10,000.  Students may enroll in 3 to 6 credits, at an approximate tuition coat of $1,035 per credit (this figure is based on summer abroad law tuition for 2017 and may be subject to a slight increase in 2018);  all students pay a $475 program fee which includes mandatory health and evacuation insurance and field trips. The new student fee (for non-CUA students) is an additional $200. Students travel and living expenses may vary depending on airfare costs and individual spending needs. Please note the non-refundable application fee of $100 is an administrative fee that does not appy to a student's expenses. For more information, see cost estimate breakdowns on the costs page.

How do I make arrangements for my overseas flight and what will it cost?
There are several good travel agencies that specialize in student and educational travel, including Council Travel, International Student Exchange, and STA Travel. Although many of these agencies primarily serve those who are 25 years old or younger, they do have discounts for students of all ages. The cost of travel will depend largely on which cities you fly out of and into (e.g., JFK to Warsaw may be less expensive than DC to Krakow). Sign up for fare alert, or check Kayak or other fare aggregators frequently. Plan to spend anywhere from $1,100-$1,350. Purchasing airfare early usually results in savings. Also, remember that the peak travel season begins in mid-June so seats will fill up very quickly.

Polish airport codes:

Warsaw International-WAW
John Paul II International Airport Krak6w-Balice- KRK

Airline and Student travel links: (Student Travel)
Kayak (Students report that Kayak or other fare aggregators offer the most competitive prices.)
Orbitz (Scandinavian)
British Airways (Polish) (Austrian) (lnt'l Student ID Card)
U.S. State Department's Travel Page

How do I get to Cracow?
Depending on your plans for traveling outside Poland, it may be less expensive to fly into Warsaw and take a train to Cracow. The Warsaw train station is an easy cab ride (although it can cost up to US $25). Note: Only hail a cab from the taxi stands. DO NOT GO WITH A PERSON SOLICITING RIDES IN THE TRAIN STATION. The train trip from Warsaw to Cracow is very inexpensive and takes approximately 3 hours.

Train info can be found online at

Note: InterCity trains are more expensive than Express trains and Americans are not eligible to buy student tickets. Student tickets with a 37% discount are only for Polish students with a valid Polish student ID. You will need to buy a regular ticket. DO NOT TAKE INDIRECT TRAINS. KASY is where you buy your ticket. You might want to have a note ready as they might not speak English at KASY (BILET DO KRAKOWA NA GODZINE: Balice Airport (KRK) in Cracow is now served by several major airlines, and Warsaw (WAW) is also served by most major international airlines. You can generally purchase a plane ticket to Cracow from Warsaw for approximately $70.

When and where are classes scheduled? How important is class attendance?
Classes meet five (5) days a week, beginning at approximately 9 a.m. See schedule (under Courses & Faculty) for individual class times. All classes are held in the newly restored Larisch Palace of the Jagiellonian University, a short walk from the dormitory. Larisch Palace is located at 12 Bracka Street in Old Town- Cracow. Class attendance is mandatory and students are bound to the CUA Honor Code while in Cracow.

When can students purchase textbooks?

Students must purchase and transport their own books, unless instructed otherwise. The book list will be made available to enrolled students in early-April to allow sufficient time for students to seek the lowest cost options available. To keep book costs to a minimum, students are encouraged to purchase used textbooks as early as possible.

How accessible are the library and computer facilities?

The library, which is conveniently located to Larisch Palace and the Bratniak dormitory, is open during weekday hours. Students find that the Internet cafes are very accessible, as many are open 24 hours, user friendly and most Internet cafe employees speak English and are happy to help you, if necessary. There is a nominal fee for Internet usage, typically 4 zloty per hour. If you decide to bring your laptop, please have it insured. We use wireless access so it may be possible for you obtain Internet access this way.

Are any meals provided?

Students are responsible for their own meals. The Bratniak offers an inexpensive breakfast for your convenience; payment for breakfast is made directly to the Bratniak. Our Polish coordinator will provide students with information on markets, groceries, as well as cafes and restaurants for your lunches and dinners.

How are roommates assigned?

Participants are required to complete the Housing Reservation Form, which allows them to accept or decline the CUA arranged housing option and to state their roommate preference. Every effort is made to honor roommate requests.Some students do not have a strong roommate preference and ask the program coordinator to assign a roommate to them. Students will be provided with the names of the participants in a timely manner to facilitate coordination of housing assignments.

What are the physical facilities like in Cracow, in terms of air conditioning, elevators, getting around the city?
Classes are held at the Larisch Palace of the Jagiellonian University. The Larisch Palace has undergone recent renovations and offers modern conveniences like air conditioning and elevators. However, some professors may prefer teaching in Jagiellonian's larger classrooms, which do not have air conditioning. The Bratniak dormitory is co-ed, with single-sex suites. Although there are a few single rooms available at a higher cost, most students are accommodated in double rooms. All rooms have a private en-suite bathroom and are equipped with sheets and towels. The Bratniak dormitory has an elevator but it does not have air conditioning.

The old center of Cracow is relatively small and is enclosed by a park and path. One can walk around the entire city in approximately 45 minutes. Students will find the distance from the Bratniak to the Main Square and to the Larisch Palace is approximately the same - 15 minutes. Cracow is truly a walking city but local transportation includes trams, buses, and cabs, all of which are inexpensive. It is important to note that Cracow is also a relatively safe city to enjoy!

What kind of financial aid is available?

Visit your financial aid office for information on student loans. Most schools have loans available to help students finance summer study. For CUA law students, you may download the Cracow Summer Financial Aid packet, and we encourage you to make an appointment with the law school's Financial Aid officier to discuss your options. Non-CUA students should consult with the Financial Aid officier at their home school.

How much spending money should I take?
Individuals spending habits vary, but students generally find about $1,000-$1,600 adequate to cover meals and personal expenses. Meals in Poland and Central Europe are inexpensive relative to costs in the U.S. Students are responsible for all personal expenses while in Poland, which include: daily meals (avg. $40 per day), local and long-distance telephone calls, entertainment, extra travel (the cost for group field trips is included in the program fee), laundry and gifts.

Can I get into the Bratniak dormotory before June 16th?
If you plan to arrive in Cracow before June 161th, you will need to locate a place to stay in the city unless you contact the program coordinator to make alternative arrangements. There are several hotels in the area but you will need to make reservations as June is the busiest time of year for travelers. There are numerous hotels located within walking distance to the main market square.

Do many students travel before, after, or during the program?

Yes. Most students travel either before or after the program. Europe is very accessible by train, and depending on one's interest, students can cover many countries in a relatively short amount of time. Very popular and beautiful cities to visit are Prague, Budapest, Vienna, or the coast of Poland (Gdansk), which are destinations that are an easy night train away (6-8 hours). Some students have even flown to Rome, Paris, and London. If you choose to travel east into any of the Newly Independent States, you may need a visa, so plan ahead. Field trips are planned on weekends, the cost for which is included in the program fee.

What field trips are part of the program?

• Please note that the prices for all field trips and program ceremonies are included in the program fee.
Participation is encouraged, but not required. Refunds will not be given for lack of participation.

The field trips scheduled for summer 2017 are listed below: (DATES ARE TENTATiVE.)

Sunday, June 17th- Walking Tour of Cracow
TBA - Alumni Bonfire
TBA - Wieliczka Salt Mines
TBA - Auschwitz
Saturday, July, 7-8th or July 14-15- Zakopane (Optional overnight stay at student's expense)

How do I acquire an internship in Poland?

Students may arrange short-term internships through the Program Director Prof. Ludwikowski. One of the many advantages of our program in Poland is that it offers our students the opportuniry to work as externs with branches of American, European and, particularly, Polish law firms. Currently, the program has permanent contacts with approximately 20+ placements at the branches of the large West European and American law firms and institutions, such as White & Case, Wail, Gotchal & Manges; Miller, Canfield, Paddock and Stone; Price Waterhouse Coopers; SPCG Law Office; Kubas, Kos. Gaertner International Law Office; American-Polish Chamber of Commerce, and many others.