The Perfect Place to Study Abroad November 16, 2022

By (Evolutionary Biology, University of Colorado - Boulder) - abroad from 01/09/2020 to 03/07/2022 with

Arcadia: ISI Perugia - The Umbra Institute

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Traveling solo out of the country for the first time helped me grow my independence and confidence to do anything I set my mind to. I discovered traveling on my own can be thrilling. I made friends that I will cherish forever and the overall experience was once in a lifetime.

Review Photos

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Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? None

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

They were amazing and incredibly accommodating especially when the pandemic hit unexpectedly. They made sure we could finish the semester at home.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I really enjoyed the apartment. It was fairly spacious and the view was incredible. My only issue with the apartment was the heating. During the night it seemed like the heater was not working. My roommates and myself would have to sleep in multiple layers and it would still sometimes be freezing cold.

* Food:

The food was amazing. They had a wide variety of restaurants to choose from and grocery stores. The pizza was delicious and their desserts were incredible. I thoroughly enjoyed eating there.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

They made sure to have events where we could speak with local students, and practice our italian. They also took us to the local markets to practice basic italian phrases to help us gain independence in the city.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

They were very good at making sure I had medicine when I had a cough and helping find the best pharmacy to get me cough medicine.

* Safety:

I never felt unsafe walking around the city. Everyone was so friendly and I never experienced any problems in the city.

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

This program was incredible. The school and staff were so friendly and I learned so much from my time there. The city was so peaceful and welcoming. It was easy to immerse myself into the culture and enjoy my surroundings.


* 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)

I spent quite a bit of money on food and expenses, however it was because I would eat at nicer restaurants or cook bigger meals at my apartment for myself and my friends.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $250
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Go explore multiple stores and restaurants while you are in the city. You find where the less expensive places are to dine or shop. Also start saving early to travel abroad and apply for as many study abroad scholarships as you can.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

They highly encouraged using Italian. I know the locals appreciated that we tried to use Italian instead of just using English.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Beginner
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? None for Italian
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Get a language app prior to departure and start working on the native language early.

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
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with? 0

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Food
  • Excursions
  • People
* What could be improved?
  • Apartment heating
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew that it was going to be shut down early because of Covid. I would have made sure to travel more. Explore and fully commit to the experience.