The Brussels School of Governance (BS0G) is an alliance between the Institute for European Studies (Vrije Universiteit Brussel) and Vesalius College. The Study Abroad programme is organised by Vesalius College.

History buffs and international relations enthusiasts will feel at home in Brussels, which hosts the European Union and North Atlantic Treaty Organization headquarters. Deepen your knowledge of international affairs and business through Vesalius College’s small classes (taught in English) and a variety internship options. 

Many extracurricular activities are sponsored by the Vesalius Student Government and the associated Vrije Universiteit Brussel. The VSG organizes regular student parties, outings and other activities. Sports include soccer, basketball, swimming, athletics and fitness at a world-class fitness center. ISEP students can also participate in student-driven academic activities such as college publications, forums and assemblies.

As the home of NATO and heart of the European Union, Brussels feeds the BSoG International Affairs curriculum with the most knowledgeable experts in the field of public policy and European studies. Students can confirm and apply the theory they acquire in class by participating in prestigious internships in the public and private sectors in such organizations as NATO, the United Nations and many more.


Please note that housing and meals are not included in the ISEP Direct program fee. Students will apply for housing and pay accommodation fees directly to Vesalius College.  At Vesalius College, a number of different housing types are available for incoming ISEP students. Detailed information about housing options and pricing can be found here. ISEP students must choose one of the three official housing options for study abroad students at Vesalius College and are not allowed to seek independent housing while in Brussels. 

Homestay: Homestays enable students to immerse themselves in the everyday life of a Belgian family and the Belgian culture, and are the recommended housing option for ISEP students at Vesalius. Vesalius College works with host families who for years have welcomed international students into their homes and are committed to enriching the study abroad experience of these students. All families have a good command of the English language and can communicate with students who have no knowledge of French or Dutch. Eleven meals per week (breakfast seven days per week and dinner on weeknights) are included in the cost of the homestay program.

Shared Student Flat: The Vesalius College Housing Coordinator offers personalized assistance to students in locating and leasing a student flat or a room. The service includes the placement in housing and personal assistance to help students understand the specific aspects (both culturally and legally) that they may encounter prior arrival or during their stay. All apartments on offer are personally visited, evaluated and approved by the Vesalius Housing Coordinator. 

Student Residence: Students looking for a dorm-style feel can stay at Vesalius’ partner’s residence 365 Rooms, located a 10-minute walk from campus. At 365 students can have their own room while being surrounded by other Belgian and international students. 

Students will be able to use their own funds for groceries and meals. See here for information regarding estimated expenses and budgeting while in Brussels. 

Program Website

Course Description

Offered during the fall semester, the European Peace and Security Studies (EPSS) certificate program provides in-depth and unique insights into the changing nature and fundamental challenges of contemporary security issues from a distinctly Brussels perspective.

By pooling the combined expertise and resources of three leading educational institutions in Brussels – BSoG, the Belgian Royal Military Academy and the Global Governance Institute (GGI), students are taught both theory and practice by prominent specialists in the field of civilian and military security issues. 

The courses emphasize theoretical and practical analysis of the comprehensive, civil-military nature of contemporary conflict and crisis management from a NATO, UN and EU perspective. They also examine the history, institutional procedures and policies of, and interrelations between, these three organizations, as well as their interaction with a wide range of civilian and military partners. The program also sheds light on the complex roots and causes of contemporary conflicts in Europe’s periphery and beyond.

At the end of the semester, students will have acquired an extensive knowledge of the institutional, theoretical and practical dimensions of contemporary issues and of the core actors in the field of European peace and security.

For every fall term semester, four courses that will constitute this program are selected from the range of courses below.

Indicated with *** are the courses that will be taught in this programme in the Fall 2021 semester:

The EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy 

Understanding Contemporary Conflicts in the Euro-Mediterranean Region***

Global Terrorism, Counter-terrorism and (De-)Radicalisation***

Security, Migration and Cultural Diversity in Europe

NATO and Transatlantic Approaches to Security*** 

Military Approaches to Promoting Security

International Approaches to State-Building, Reform and Good Governance

Russian Foreign Policy***

For a description of these courses, please refer to the BSoG BA courses overview.

ISEP STUDENT SERVICES OFFICER Jolene Bechtel 703-504-9993 | Thanks for your interest in ISEP Study Abroad! I’m your Student Advisor and main point of contact here at ISEP. As you search for programs, I'll be available to answer any questions you might have. Feel free to contact me at any point in your search process for help, tips or advice.


(in English)

Fields of Study

  • Area Studies Recommended!

    European Studies

  • International/Global Studies:

    International Relations and Affairs Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution

  • Social Sciences Recommended!

    Political Science and Government

Academic Requirements

  • U.S. GPA: 2.75 or higher
    *accepts lower GPA with explanation
  • TOEFL iBT Score: 90
  • IELTS Score: 6.5

Special Needs Support

  • Mental Health
  • Mobility
  • Hearing
  • Visual
  • Speech
  • Learning

Other Academic Conditions

- As part of the ISEP application any student potentially interested in applying for an internship must attach to a copy of their resume/CV and a general cover letter that outlines his or her internship objectives, preferred job responsibilities and qualifications.

- Non-native English speakers must submit language scores to determine their level of language proficiency.

- Housing and meals are not included in the ISEP Direct program fee. Students will apply for housing and pay accommodation fees directly to BSoG. ISEP students must choose one of the three official housing options for study abroad students at Vesalius College, and are not allowed to seek independent housing while in Brussels. 

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Brussels School of Governance (Vesalius College)



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