Unbelievable experience Ill never get again Past Review

By (Biology/Pre-Med, Fairfield University) - abroad from 08/25/2014 to 12/13/2014 with

Fairfield University: Florence - Semester or Year in Italy

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Learned so much about/how to handle myself in different life situations. also learning the italian culture was amazing

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.

Not difficult at all, but at the same time it was a great learning experience. Teachers knew we were there not to be tested and drilled with facts (like in America) but to rather learn and submerge into the culture. They were great with assisting with that.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Beautiful apartment in great location. However when we moved in there was old food on the counters, dead lightbulbs, and cockroaches in our fridge that were failed to be addressed the entire semester

* Food:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Everything was great except the language. Couldn't learn much Italian in Florence especially with an 8 am Italian class

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

I had a problem that required testing. Dr Kerr saw me within minutes of my phone call and I was in for lab testing the next day. It was great and very accessible with both the doctors office and lab write in town.

* Safety:

Great. Witnessed and even stopped some events. But if your smart its virtually impossible to be in harms way

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? 100 euro
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? dont spend all your money at the bar!!!! and learn to cook


* 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

really none - florence is very americanized. wish it was enforced more

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? italian beginner II
How many hours per day did you use the language? 0
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? use it. its really hard because every where you go in public people speak english. but people that you meet with every day, like common restaurants, cafes, professors, ask them to talk to you in italian, as painful as it may be for both parties.

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?
  • Prepardness
  • Relevancy
  • Location
* What could be improved?
  • 8 AMs!!
  • Increased importance of language
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? how quickly it would go by