The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Experiential Learning

Public Policy 85: Second Full Day in Greece

On the second full day of their trip, we, the students of Public Policy 85, had a full set of deeply-informative conversations with a generous and diverse group of experts.  

These conversations began over an enjoyable breakfast with Nikolas Karamouzis, President at Grant Thornton and former Chairman of the Eurobank Group and Hellenic Bank Association.  The wide-ranging discussion generated throughout the breakfast with Mr. Karamouzis flowed out to the hallways of the Hotel Grand Bretagne, through the streets of Athens, and back to the Bank of Greece. We, at this point a known entity to the security staff, was next welcomed at the Bank of Greece by Spiros Pantelias, Director of the central bank's Financial Stability Department, and his colleague Nikolas Stavrianou of the Financial Stability Department.  This conversation addressed policy reforms and new mechanisms of ensuring financial stability, and also broader questions, fundamental to democratic politics, about executive branch independence and expertise, and how the independent experts tasked with implementing public policy foster trust among the public.

Public Policy 85: First Full Day in Greece

Our day started off with a protest. We could hear it as we made our way toward our first appointment of the day, a tour of the Museum of the Bank of Greece with Dr. Yorgo Seferlis. As we got closer it was clear that the protest was, in fact, right outside of the Museum of the Bank of Greece. We later learned that they were protesting recent staffing changes at one of the nation's largest private bank, Piraeus Bank, rather than Greek public financial institutions. 

After our tour, we met with Professor Dimitros Malliaropoulos, Chief Economist and Director of the Economic Research & Analysis Department of the Bank of Greece, Greece’s central bank. We then walked a few blocks to the National Bank of Greece, one of four Greek private banks, for a meeting with the former Greek Minister of Finance (2014-2015), Professor Gikas Hardouvelis. Next on the agenda was a tour of the Hellenic Parliament, located in an ornate building that formerly housed the royal palace. 

The late afternoon was ours to fill as we pleased. Some explored Athens, many took a nap — we are all pretty jet-lagged. 

Public Policy 85: Arrival in Greece

Despite a snowstorm causing minor delays at Newark International Airport, the students of Public Policy 85: Topics in Global Policy Leadership departed on Monday night for Athens, Greece to begin their two-week research trip to Greece, Germany, and Switzerland to examine the response to the global financial crisis and Eurozone crisis.

After arriving in Athens with a layover in Frankfurt, group was able to briefly explore the city on the way to their first interview with Georgios Pagoulatos, former senior advisor to the Greek Prime Minister and the Director General of the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP), Greece’s leading think tank.

Experiential Learning at the Rockefeller Center

At the Rockefeller Center, academic courses are paired with experiential opportunities so students can put their abstract learning into practice. This integrated model gives students the intellectual framework and the hands-on experience they need to become effective leaders in the world beyond Dartmouth.

Most students start with Public Policy 5: Introduction to Public Policy, where they learn the fundamentals of policymaking. The course serves as a prerequisite to the First-Year Fellows program, which places rising sophomores into summer policy internships with Dartmouth alumni mentors in Washington, D.C. Commenting on the impact of First-Year Fellows, Olivia Brody-Bizar ’21 says, “Experiencing this fellowship early in my college career has changed the trajectory of my future endeavors. Each day presented immense opportunity for growth, both professionally and personally.”


The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences