Tre Mesi: My 3 Months in Florence, Italy Past Review

By (Photography., SUNY Purchase) for

Lorenzo de' Medici – Florence: Direct Enrollment

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained an appreciation for the cultures outside of the U.S., an urge to experience more through travelling and the value of different perspectives that come with such experiences.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

Workload was not overwhelming, the art classes were not challenging but were enjoyable and the professors were very supportive of each student and their different respective levels of the course. The professors were passionate and eager to stimulate their students. In the photography courses there were less critiques than in the American courses and the relationship with your peers was established on your own accord and the relationship with your teacher was more important. I learned something new every day, my non-art class was fascinating and an appropriate level of work. I enjoyed my experience very much.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The administration was very helpful, my advisor sent weekly emails and was always available for questions and made sure to ask me about my experience and how I was doing.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The proximity to class was very close which was helpful, very centrally located and a short walking distance from most common destinations. The kitchen was not great, our oven was not 100 % functional and we lacked a microwave and a toaster--which some of my friends in my program in other apartments were given. The noise level due to the location was sometimes high so ear plugs were commonly a necessity. It got very cold in the apartment in the colder months as a result of limited hours of heat.

* Food:

Most students cooked however there were many affordable places to eat for students. Water was never usually free and there was a dining tax with most meals. Most restaurants are not cheap but can be fun every once in a while such as for birthdays, family visits and other special occasions.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

My weekend trips with the program were very fun, well organized and of good quality. Traveling was very easy and made me feel like I was taking advantage of my visit, however I wish I had traveled more outside of Italy than I did. There was always something to do, whether visiting museums and flea markets or just walking around and seeing the city.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I felt very safe in Florence. The police force are prevalent and easily approachable. The location of my apartment made me feel safe as it was in a generally populated area, however proper safety precautions--such as traveling in groups--were always taken by my roommates and myself.

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

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)

Language

* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
Language acquisition improvement?

Most people in Florence spoke English but if was up to you to speak Italian with the locals. If you made an effort they usually would help you practice.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • The classes
  • The teachers
  • The weekend trips
* What could be improved?
  • Nothing
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Students should be prepared for the cultural differences that come with living in a foreign country. Students that would enjoy this program would be ones who do well on their own and function well in new and different situations as well as are eager to learn and experience the wonderful things this country and world have to offer.