International School made the difference Past Review

By (University of South Carolina - Columbia) - abroad from 08/20/2011 to 05/10/2012 with

SAI Study Abroad: Florence - Apicius International Culinary School of Hospitality

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I spent the best nine months of my life in Italy. I would do it again in a heartbeat. The relationships and friendships I gained from all over the world are priceless. I have made so many deep connections that education cannot fill. My passion for baking and pastry has deeply strengthened and I am more motivated than ever to achieve my goals. I learned a lot about patiences. I think it is so important to learn more about other cultures.

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: Apicius, FUA, Squola
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:

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

Great. I had to go to the doctor twice and it was very convenient.

* Safety:

I felt super safe

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)

Europe is expensive. But I ate a lot at home and went to the fresh markets.

* Was housing included in your program cost? Yes
* Was food included in your program cost? No


* 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

I was very upset with the language program. I was in Italy for 9 months and I have nothing of the language to show for it. It is silly to take Italian for one month in September only.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? None
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? None, in Italain
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? I went to an international school with people from all over the world, many of them English is not their native tongue. Everywhere I went, class, out with friends we all spoke English. I rarely got to speak Italian except for ordering.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

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

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
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?
  • International School with people from all over the world and friendships made
  • The baking and pastry program was very hands on
  • The courses improved my skill levels
* What could be improved?
  • Better equipment in the baking labratory
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Nothing