My Experience in Italia Past Review

By (Government and International Studies, Manhattan College) for

AIFS: Florence - Richmond in Florence and Internship Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Studying abroad required me to be an independent adult in a new and exciting place. Traveling to each new place was thrilling and it has inspired me to pursue international law in order to travel more places and fall in love with more interesting cultures.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I enjoyed my classes abroad greatly. Each of my teachers came from a different background and presented very interesting perspectives. The class choices were very very interesting and I enjoyed each and every subject. The workload was pretty light aside from the final papers in each class, which I felt were a fair way to make up for the lack of homework and other assignments. I also LOVED that we spent many classes on-site visiting different cultural places that we may not have known about without the program.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

I LOVED my program's administration. They were always there if you needed them to help in any way possible but they left us to be independent and handle things on our own. I love that they trusted us and left the responsibility in our hands. Allowing me to stand on my own two feet in a foreign country definitely raised my confidence in handling situations back home on my own.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My apartment in Florence became my home. My roommate and I loved being able to cook for ourselves and really have somewhere that felt homey in a country so far away.

* Food:

Il Teatro is by far one of the most amazing restaurants in the entire world and I enjoyed many many meals there. Overall the restaurant choice was excellent and I really liked that the majority of restaurants on our meal plan were authentic Italian, rather than American restaurants and bars.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The trip to Pisa and Lucca was by far one of my favorites. It was nice to escape to the countryside with a small group. I also enjoyed Venice tremendously and was happy we got to see so many things there.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

When I needed to see a doctor the administration quickly set me up with an English speaking doctor that day and I was seen with no problems. I also got re-embersed for all the medications that were prescribed. Overall I felt very safe in each location that we traveled to. I was given the freedom to explore but always knew that someone was close at hand to help if necessary,

If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Language acquisition improvement?

Although most Italians spoke or understood English I spoke Italian to locals the majority of the time. I enjoyed using the different things I learned in class with the local community and they were happy to see me trying to adapt to the new culture.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • I loved the housing setup. Each apartment was unique and beautiful and I loved the independence we were given.
* What could be improved?
  • Communication between the administration and students was often lacking.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Studying abroad will be the most memorable time of your life, so make sure you want to soak up every minute of it in a place that you will come to think of as home.