Studying at John Cabot University opened a window to the rest of the world and to myself Past Review

By (English Literature, University of the Incarnate Word) for

John Cabot University - Study Abroad in Rome, Italy

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
The trajectory of my entire life changed because I studied abroad. And I cannot imagine my life without it now. Since Rome, I've also lived in London and Chicago, and I'm getting ready for a move to NYC. However, I also have more opportunities and travel around the world more frequently, and I'm more conscious of other cultures as well as less judgmental. Additionally, I think you learn so much about yourself that you never knew existed until studying abroad. As I said earlier, studying abroad is like opening a window you never knew was closed. And then once that window is open, you not only want to step out of it, but you can never imagine living with it closed again.

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

I really appreciated that the classes were smaller, as I came from a private school. This also enabled me to make friends with my peers, and to receive more help from my professors. Weaknesses: Housing could be cheaper. After our first semester abroad, many students began searching for their own accommodations.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

For the most part, I think it's very, very important to try and live closest to school. Living in a different country is overwhelming enough, you don't want the hassle of figuring out how to get to class everyday, whether or not the bus is going to come, if there's a transportation strike, etc. I had the opportunity to live at first far away from JCU and then next door. Living close to JCU completely changed my quality of life, and helped me to finally do better in school. I encourage all incoming students to find a place closest to school!!

* Food:

Food was the best part of Rome!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I enjoyed the field trip to Ravenna, however, I really enjoyed meeting students from all over the world. Many of my friends were from Eastern Europe, Arab countries and other parts of the world. One of my most fond experiences is being able to meet students from various countries and different backgrounds.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I think there could be a more formal seminar about responsibility and staying in groups when going out at night, especially when you're a new student. I did not like the doctor I got sent to while there, and I think other students had similar experiences, i.e. he didn't do much, but then said, 'ok you pay me Euro 50 now.' Perhaps there could be an evaluation of the doctor's that JCU recommends to students.

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)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Language acquisition improvement?

I think it's important to take an Italian class prior to arriving, and then take Italian classes for the duration of your stay in Italy. I had a good professor but would have loved more one-on-one conversational lessons with Italians from school or in the community.

Direct Enrollment/Exchange

* Did you study abroad through an exchange program or did you directly enroll in the foreign university? Direct Enrollment

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • International Students
  • Americans

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Rome, The Italians and International Students, great mentors
* What could be improved?
  • Getting more Americans to get out of their bubble and to engage with more students from other cultures.
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I think it's important to study abroad because you learn how to come out of your shell and engage with the world. You learn necessary communication and interrelationship skills that you'll need for the rest of your life, personally and professionally.