Three Weeks in Florence Past Review

By (Health Sciences, Florence University of the Arts) - abroad from 06/01/2013 to 06/22/2013 with

Direct Enrollment: Florence - Apicius School of Hospitality

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned the value of being more active as we had to walk everywhere and how to appreciate my surroundings. It was totally the best experience ever. I think anyone who can figure out a way to finance a study abroad trip should absolutely do it!

Review Photos

Direct Enrollment: Florence - Palazzi: Apicius and FUA Photo Direct Enrollment: Florence - Palazzi: Apicius and FUA Photo Direct Enrollment: Florence - Palazzi: Apicius and FUA Photo

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

The course was well put together including lectures in the kitchen, daily cooking lessons and a variety of field trips to learn about the food and culture.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

We had a thorough orientation of the program and services at FUA. The administrative staff was helpful if we had any questions. We received student id cards loaded with units to use for food at Ganzo and Fedora. Overall it was well organized.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

Ganzo and Fedora produce high quality gourmet foods by students which were awesome!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

living in an apartment in Florence made me feel like I was home. Walking all over the city and shopping at the food markets gave me the sense that I was a local. I only wish I could have stayed longer.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Personally did not have any health needs. One of my classmates did and was able to get an appointment within a few hours.

* Safety:

Florence felt like a very safe city. I did not ever feel afraid. I was aware of my surroundings so I did not find myself in an awkward situation.

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)

If I shopped at the food market and prepared food at home it was very affordable. the housing was included in the course fees so no expense there and I walked everywhere so I did not have any transportation expenses.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 80
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Find the food market and shop there daily for the freshest foods. Eat at home if you can as much as possible. Find "off the beaten path" restaurants and sandwich shops to get the best deal for your money. The main tourist area restaurants cost more. If you plan on visiting museums and attractions find out what the university offers in terms of student rates or purchase the Florence Card which gives you access and priority entry to many of the main attractions.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? No

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?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The interaction with the locals
  • living in a foreign country
  • the food
* What could be improved?
  • Not sure
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I would have packed less - although this was recommended, I still brought too much. I would have figured out how to fit everything in a backpack and a carry on bag. I would have brought my personal PC laptop.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Food and Culture

Course Department: Apecius School of Hospitality
Instructor: Ceccilia Ricci
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Chef Ceccilia was awesome. She presented a vast array of topics and history of the various regions of Italy incorporating recipes from the regions to we got a really good feel for the culture and lifestyle. We had to write a paper and take an examination. There was ample time to complete the paper and study. The only thing that I wished I would have done was brought my own laptop. Although there are computer labs there are limited number of computers and they were all Macs - I was not familiar with Macs so it took me a bit longer to complete the assignment.
Credit Transfer Issues: My institution has a good working relationship with Apicius so this was not an issue.