Study Abroad Italy was the best experience of my life. Past Review

By (art education, Florence University of the Arts) for

SAI Study Abroad: Florence - Florence University of the Arts (FUA)

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I loved Italy so much that I have concidered finding a way to move there and become a citizen. It is very nice to live in a place that is not so commercial, where you can buy produce that is actually fresh and ripe, and the family is more important than work. It has shown me that the whole world is not the same, and that pieces of the past and culture are still preserved in some places.

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.

It was an american school within italy, however the teachers were italian. The only major difference was my italian teacher spoke italian the whole class period, which helped me to learn the language better. In my studio art classes, we were given more freedom in the subject matter we chose to illustrate. But my teachers still had high expectations, and expected to see work completed on time.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

I always felt supported. The administration was kind and helpful.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The school found appartments for us, and paired us with an american student at the same school that had a simular living style. Everyone's appartment was different. We were spread out all over Florence. We had sheets and cookware supplied to us. We did need to buy toilet paper, detergent, ect. The only complaint I have about my appartment was that it was very cold. Part of this is because of the old heating systems they use in italy. But I had friends with warmer appartments.

* Food:

The cheapest way to live is to cook at home. Reseraunts in Italy are very expensive and the portions are small. But the prices on food at the market or grocery store are very cheap, cheaper than america. And the fruit and vegetables are very fresh and delicious.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Our best feild trip was to Portofino. It was beautiful. You pay ten euro to hold your spot, and they give it back to you when you arrive. Wine tasting in Tuscany was a second best.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I felt very safe there. There was an english speaking doctor if we ever needed to make a visit. We had insurance included in our program. I had trouble finding cough drops at the grocery store, and they were so expensive at the pharmacy. Bring some with you when you travel.

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?

A lot of people in florence know some english. But you can also use body language and the few words you know in italian to communicate. One of the best ways I improved my italian was trying to use it when going to the grocery store. Also I made italian friends and they helped me to improve my italian.

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?
  • getting to know the italian culture
* What could be improved?
  • a little more guidance in the beginning
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Students who like to explore and get to know their host countries culture. Florence is very easy to get to know because it is walkable. You need to be open minded and be willing to take risks. It would best suit a student that has a little experience witht the italian language. It can be a haven for an art or art history major.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:


Course Department:
Instructor: Alessandra
Instruction Language:
Credit Transfer Issues: