From Jersey to Florence Past Review

By (Public Relations, University of South Carolina - Columbia) - abroad from 01/25/2012 to 05/12/2012 with

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

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained a sense of independence and self-reliance that you can't get from staying in the U.S. No matter how far away your home is from your home school, it is easy to call mom or dad and figure it out. In Italy, there are obstacles in the way and overcoming them will make you stronger person.

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 courses were adequately difficult and used the city of Florence to make the classes more hands-on or experiential.

* 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?

* Safety:

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)

Florence is a pricey city if you try to go out every night, but you can definitely make it work by using the right markets. Mercato Centrale is a gem for the student on a budget. Travel is all about putting in the time to work the best deals out.

* 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

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? Intermediate
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? Don't be afraid to talk to people. Use what you are learning in class and let yourself speak. If you don't try at all, you'll never get better.

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Apartment
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Friends
  • Travel
  • Florence
* What could be improved?
  • Hot water
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? The Italian language

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Travel Writing

Course Department:
Instructor: Elisa Biagini
Instruction Language:
Comments: The class would be a hassle if you don't like to write, but that was not a problem for me. Professor Biagini was awesome and helped me develop my writing style and expand on my creative writing ability.
Credit Transfer Issues: