Changing perspective in Italy Past Review

By (Engineering Science, Trinity University) for

Arcadia: ISI Perugia - The Umbra Institute Summer

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained a new understanding of the world. I learned I could be independent and self-sufficient. I am now more confidence in myself and my ability to adapt to the world around me.

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.

My professors were extremely knowledgeable and made me think in a new way. The grading system and teaching methods were very similar to my home university.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The administration staff was helpful and answered any questions. They helped a lot with little thing, like where to eat or visit, to bigger things, like my roommates bringing back bed bugs. They could have done a much better job ensuring they knew where everyone was traveling. Once I was unable to turn in my overnight traveling form because I tried to turn it in after 8pm. My program had no idea where I was traveling. Maybe having them set up a website where travel plans could be posted would work better.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The apartment was sparse but nice. The showers didn't drain properly so I could only shower for one to two minutes at a time. We ran into problems with bed bugs, but it is possible my roommates picked them up when they went to a hostel. The kitchen was stalked with a decent amount of cooking equipment. The neighborhood was safe and I never felt uncomfortable walking by myself at night.

* Food:

Make sure to look up the foreign names or cooking ingredients before going to the store.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The amphitheater opera in Verona is amazing as well as Vivaldi concertos in Venice. My program put on pizza nights at local restaurants along with wine tastings and a weekend trip to a Tuscany farm estate.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Bed bugs are real so look at your mattress before you sleep on it. My program was good about setting up doctor visits for those who needed them and would accompany the student if they couldn't speak the language. I didn't have any problems with health while I was there, but my friends who got sick were well taken care of.

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? Food in Italy was very expensive. Dinner usually ran around 20 to 30 euro at a restaurant. I tried to eat cheaper and buy groceries, but I still spent the most money on food during my trip. I would say at least 80 euro per week on food if you want to eat out or explore specialty foods.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Just be conscious of the exchange rate. Also, it is easy for credit card information to be stolen so maybe try to go to a respectable bank and get the money you want to use for the week so you don't have to use your card all the time.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None

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 ability to learn not only in the classroom but through traveling experiences.
* What could be improved?
  • The host program helping more with planning travel plans.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? This is a very good program. It is small and you will learn a lot while having time to travel .

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Roman Empire

Course Department: HSRE 330
Instructor: John Pierro
Instruction Language: English
Comments: The professor knew a lot about the Roman empire and could answer any question. While he had a set amount of material he wanted to cover he would stop and explain something that was confusing or just to go into more depth.
Credit Transfer Issues: There were no credit transfer issues