Life Changing Florence: A Flawless Experience Past Review

By (Marketing., University of Hartford) for

AIFS: Florence - Richmond in Florence and Internship Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned how to handle so many life situations and over come home sickeness... which I did not suffer with there at all. After studying abroad, I want to seek a career in Europe post graduation.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The work load was less in terms of homework but it differed because each class required a large essay and tests that counted for a lot more of the grades. This lead to making sure I did well on these few assignments or it could have drastically affected my grade.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

I can not find a single thing negative to say about the AIFS staff. They were the most kind, helpful, and personable people and truly made us all feel like we were home.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

A beautiful apartment right between school and the Ponte Vecchio. So big, clean, and nice. 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, kitchen, living room, shoe room, laundry room, 6 girls total living there.

* Food:

All of the Gusta restaurants are great, Il Tarrochi, Il Teatro, La Bussola. The meal plan was absolutely perfect.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

As stated before, each month Richmond gave out a calendar of uncountable events and activities to sign up for.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Florence is SO safe. Obviously like any other place in the word it isn't good to walk around alone at night but with 1 or 2 other people with you, no problems happened to any of us.

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? To be honest, I can't even calculate how much money I spent. I traveled to other countries almost every weekend and being a girl, I spent a lot of money on shopping and what not.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? 280 euro upon arrival for utilities at your apartment (you get a lot back at the end of the semester). You will want to save up money to travel, it is so easy to book trips and travel around Europe.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
Language acquisition improvement?

A lot of people in Florence spoke English but I was able to use the language a lot of times. Especially friends who befriended Italians, it was fun to speak with them and see how they interact with each other.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The meal tickets... saved so much money
* What could be improved?
  • nothing
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? GO TO AIFS. Being friends with other students studying in Florence with other programs, they were ALL jealous of ours... especially in terms of the meal tickets

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

History of the Italian Mafia

Course Department:
Instructor: Lorenzo Picchi
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Yes, the course was hard but possibly only for a select few students. I for one am not great in history courses so it was difficult remembering dates and what not. He was a great teacher, very interesting, brought us to some interesting places. I really enjoyed his class. I feel like I participated the same amount as at home in his class.
Credit Transfer Issues: I am not sure yet, hoping I won't.