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Student to study in Netherlands as a part of Summer Abroad program

summer abroad
As treasurer for the Lion Ambassadors, Tansey Ochs tracks the club's budget.
4/20/2011 —


Administration of Justice major to learn about 
criminal law from the Dutch perspective 

Tansey Ochs, a junior administration of justice major at Penn State New Kensington, was selected to study in the Netherlands during the summer.

As a part of the Penn State Summer Abroad: Netherlands program for students in the field of criminal justice, Ochs will spend four-weeks with the Dutch to learn about issues of criminal justice from a Dutch perspective. Class work will explore such issues as the history of this approach, its rationale, and the way it works out in daily practice.

"I have only heard good things about study abroad programs and I love to travel," said Ochs, who expects to graduate in 2012. "Not only is this is an excellent way to travel to Europe, but I will earn credits for my studies, as well as cover my internship requirement for my administration of justice degree."

The coursework, "Dutch Criminal Justice in Comparative Perspective," deals specifically with Dutch criminal law and the functioning of the Dutch criminal justice system (police, courts, prisons, etc.). Classes will be held at Avans University of Applied Science (Avans Hogeschool in Dutch), and field trips may include police stations, prisons, rehab programs, and international courts.

"We will be learning about the criminal justice system of the Netherlands, and how their system compares to other European countries, and to the United States' system," said Ochs, a graduate of Franklin Regional High School. "We will take tours of the red light district as well as museums."

The Dutch have a long-standing tradition of tolerance, diversity, and consensus-based politics. This translates into a specific approach toward crime and justice issues that is known around the world. Examples of this approach can be seen in various fields, such as the legalization of prostitution, the legalization of soft drugs, the medical (instead of criminal justice) approach toward hard drugs, and the way in which issues like juvenile crime, euthanasia, and gay marriage are handled.

The education abroad program operates under the umbrella of Penn State Global Programs, an initiative that provides students in a variety of academic disciplines with opportunities to study in foreign countries for varying periods of time -- a week, a summer, a semester, or a full year -- to experience other cultures.

"I highly encourage all students to look into the different global programs that correlate with many of the majors Penn State offers," said Ochs, whose extracurricular activities include orientation leader and treasurer of the Lion Ambassadors. "If you don't want to go away for a whole year or even an entire semester, the summer programs are an excellent compromise."

Penn State New Kensington is an active participant in the global programs. During the recent spring break, students and faculty spent a week in Spain. In the past seven years, more than 150 campus students have traveled to France, Italy, China, Greece, Peru and the Galapagos Islands.

For more about the summer abroad program, visit

For more about global programs at the New Kensington campus, visit http://www.nk.psu.edu/Academics/InternationalPrograms/intlprograms.htm

For more about Avans University, visit http://www.educations.com/Avans_University_of_Applied_Sciences__b11746.html

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