Rome Became My New Home Past Review

By (Accounting, Ithaca College) for

IES Abroad: Study Rome - Language & Area Studies

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was absolutely worthwhile. I gained an appreciation for other cultures as well a stronger appreciation for America. I definitely want to travel more when I am older and see more of Europe. This trip showed me that I can do anything that I set my mind to whether in America or abroad.

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.

The workload was very doable. I think the study abroad professors know that the students are going to learn more outside the classroom than inside. I found the exams to be kind of easy, but the professors graded hard. The professors also did not give out as many grades which I did not like because then there was more pressure to do really well on the few tests or projects we did have.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

IES Abroad Rome was very organized. Events were always planned out and carried through very smoothly. If any student had any problem at all, they could easily go to administration to get help. Some things took a long time to get done. For example, we didn't have hot water for the first 2 weeks that we were in Italy. It took them way too long to get the repair people to our apartment. Professors knew about the country as well and were able to give tips and suggestions. The program size would sufficient. My expectations were definitely met.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Our apartment was pretty nice. We didn't really have that big of a kitchen which made it difficult for 6 people to cook and eat in there at once. We also had a shower that we couldn't use because it was too small. The neighborhood that we lived in was nice. It was the farthest away from the school though and night life which was sometimes incovenient. I did not have to buy anything for bedding or for the kitchen. I was treated very well as a student by my Italian Student Companion.

* Food:

I am not allergic to anything so there were no dietary restrictions. The quality of food was fantastic and there was always plenty of it. I never

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The parades that Rome would have were memorable. Also being in Rome for Easter was neat. I took a great field trip to see steps that Jesus walked on which was cool. We also took a field trip to Venice where I got to better know my classmates.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Rome is very safe. I never felt in danger when I was there. I got sick a couple of times when I was there. One time I really wanted to go to the doctor, but the health advisor said wait a couple of days to see if you get better which I did. However, some of my friends got really sick and it took them awhile to get a doctors appointment and then find the doctors office which was far away.

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? I spent between 40 and 50 euro on groceries each week. If I ever went out to dinner, my bill was usually around 10-12 euro. I tried to get the cheaper meals when I went out though. A monthly bus pass was 30 euro each month. I spent a good amount of money on traveling (transportation, hostels, and food)
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Don't go crazy with your money. You want to make it last for the whole time you are there. Because the euro is stronger than the dollar, euros are more expensive and therefore you end up spending more money than you think. However, don't let money hold you back from doing things. It's good to go out every once and a while and buy special souvenirs. I don't think I had any unanticipated expenses.


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? I had never taken Italian
If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Language acquisition improvement?

I lived with an Italian Student Companion and was able to practice with her. I was also able to sometimes use Italian in public like at the grocery stores or in restaurants. I practiced with students from my Italian class as well. A lot of people did speak English though.

Other Program Information

* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Local Students
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Any student that wants to learn about history, art, and religion and gain a little weight from delicious food should do this program.