Living Art History! Past Review

By (Art History, Fairfield University) - abroad from 01/21/2013 to 05/10/2013 with

Fairfield University: Florence - Early Renaissance Art in Italy, January Session

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Loved experiencing history as i walked to class.

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

My classes thoroughly explored what Italy had to offer, and the program did take us around several times in Italy, but Florence as a city is very Americanized. Possibly warn students that it is Americanized and they possibly wont get a true "Italian" experience in terms of learning the language, etc.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I had to go to the dentist, which i'm sure was not typical of most students. The healthcare provider labeled the office I went to as English language available. True, but for only some doctors. Perhaps tell students to request an English language doctor when making appointments.

* Safety:

As was already known, one building was broken into, but the program coordinators addressed that to the best of their ability. The front door to my apartment was supposed to "automatically close" and you werent allowed to shut it. This made me uncomfortable in that if i was being followed, etc, I would not be able to close the door. The same door also stopped locking, and was getting stuck. We emailed the housing agency, but it was still not fixed almost three weeks later. We had later contacted the program coordinators (after the housing agency) and they attempted to fix the situation. But again, the door still did not lock when we left the apartment.

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)

I personally kept a better budget than some of my roommates, but I did end up spending more than originally planned.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? 75-100 euros? Depending on the week. 50 for food (grocery and eating out).
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Grocery shop! Eat out less.


* 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

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
How many hours per day did you use the language?

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?
  • Museum Card!
  • Internship!
* What could be improved?
  • N/A
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? How "Americanized" Florence is.

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Academic or Linguist
You went abroad with specific academic goals in mind; the program credentials and rigor of your coursework abroad were very important to you. You had a great time abroad, but never lost sight of your studies and (if applicable) were diligent with your foreign language study. Good for you!