A new place to call home: Rome August 17, 2016

By (Fordham University) - abroad from 02/01/2016 to 05/20/2016 with

IES Abroad: Study Rome - Language & Area Studies

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I learned a lot about independence and acceptance of different cultures. The Italian way of life is different from anything we are used to here and I really enjoyed having the chance to learn it by living it.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 1 month - 6 months

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:

IES students need to provide their own food but the eateries located around the center are yummy and affordable.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

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

When I think back on my semester in Rome it feels like a dream. Still today when I tell people that I lived one block away from the Vatican it doesn’t seem real. IES students live in two of the most beautiful quarters of Rome, Prati and Trastevere; the center is within walking distance, right across from Castel Sant’Angelo. The structure of the IES program integrates its students into the city. One-hour lessons were spent in the classroom, while two hour sessions were often spent meeting with experts in the subject area or exploring museums. It is one thing to look at a painting in a textbook and another to look at it and discuss it while it is 2 feet away from you. The professors at IES work both at the center and in Roman universities so they can give insight that is authentic. They are always available to talk both about class materials and the city itself. I got some of the best suggestions on places to visit from my professors. In addition to their suggestions and exploring the city myself, the center sent out a weekly email telling students about what was going on around Rome during the week. IES really works to make their students feel like romans after their time studying there.

Finances

* 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? I spent about $150 a weeks I did not travel
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Balance eating out and cooking at home! If you know you are traveling that weekend try to spend less during the week so you don't stress about what you're spending during your travels and just enjoy yourself.

Language

* 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

Professors spoke english during lessons but spoke in Italian in the hallway with students to help them practice

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Fluent
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Fluent
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? I had taken multiple Italian literature classes before I left.
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? Try duolingo before you go to learn the most basic terms that can be very useful

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?
  • I liked that the professors taught at the local universities.
  • I liked that they offered day trips around Italy that we could sign up for.
* What could be improved?
  • I would have liked more classes taught in Italian.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew I needed to regulate my time better.

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!