Study Abroad in Florence, Italy Past Review

By (Fine Art Painting, Marywood University) for

Studio Arts College International (SACI): Florence - SACI in Florence

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was completely worth while. I absolutely loved it and learned so much. I've grown more and came to more of an understanding about what I want to do with my future.

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 Art History class it was very intense and took a lot of time, but it was challenging in a positive way. I loved the class, and learned a great deal from it. I learned a great deal in my Sculpture and painting classes as well.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The bureaucratic system of government made getting some things take a while to get done. As for the school they were on top of what needed to get done and were on time with necessary forms. I have no complaints about the administration or program overall.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Loved my apartment. We had a mold problem, but once we got that taken care of the apartment was great. Plenty of space and in a great location. I felt very safe in the area I was living, as well as in Florence as a whole. We bought fitted sheets due to not liking the bottom sheet given, as well as some more pans since the ones provided were broken. We also bought more cooking knives because the others were not very good.

* Food:

Having Celiacs it can be hard to eat but once I found where to get Gluten Free food, I was able to eat just fine and most restaurants had something I could eat. The restairant Ciro & Sons did provide a special Gluten Free Menu.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

There were a good number of optional field trips as well as many gallery openings at the school. There were cooking classes at the beginning of the semester as well as some Italian classes after school to help us learn enough to get around offered to the students. The film teacher also held a movie night one night a month.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Florence was a very safe city. I felt very comfortable walking around by my self. I never got sick so I have no clue how easy it was to find healthcare. But from what I heard from other students it wasn't too hard to find a doctor if one was really needed.

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)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? Each week I generally spent 20-30 Euros at the most. On occasion I would spend tops more depending on what I needed to get for classes or if I traveled. But I usually tried to spend only 20-30 Euros a week.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Not really, even though I knew I had to pay it I was still surprised at the amount of money I had to pay for general fees to stay in Italy. Though I was slightly surprised that the Permit of Stay fee was separate from the Insurance fee (probably due to have forgotten)


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

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 do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Just have fun, the more fun you have the less you feel homesick. Try new things, even if you don't plan on doing them when you get back, at least you have the experience and can objectively like and/or dislike something. Someone who is independent and is fine with limited contact with home, someone interested in art, and someone that enjoys good food.

Individual Course Reviews

Course Name/Rating:

Intermediate Drawing

Course Department: Two Diminsional Area; ARTS313
Instructor: John Taylor
Instruction Language: English
Comments: I felt this course held me back rather than help me excel in drawing. I felt it was detrimental to the Intermediate Drawing students to have the class combined with the Beginning Drawing Class.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Intermediate Painting

Course Department: Two Diminsional Area; ARTS324
Instructor: Gary Lisa
Instruction Language: English
Comments: I felt I learned a good amount about different techniques of painting and different aspects of painting in this class. Gary was a great teacher and really helped me excel in this area. Overall I enjoyed this class and felt I gained knowledge and experience.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

High Renaissance, Mannerist, and Early Baroque Art History

Course Department: Art History and Museology; ARTH335
Instructor: Helen Waterson
Instruction Language: English
Comments: It was extremely intense. The teacher had an extremely high amount of knowledge in the subjects and taught us as much as our brains could take in. Being able to see the work in person on trips was amazing and a great help to learning and appreciating the work.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

Beginning Sculpture

Course Department: Three Dimensional Area; ARTS291
Instructor: Dario Arcamone
Instruction Language: English
Comments: I learned a great deal about the technique of sculpture and with the use of different materials. The teacher was great and I learned a great deal from him.
Credit Transfer Issues:
Course Name/Rating:

High Renaissance On Site (co-requisite)

Course Department: Art History and Museology; ARTH(OS2)495
Instructor: Helen Waterson
Instruction Language: English
Comments: Co-requisite for the above art history class. I was very glad to be able to take trips to see the different works we were studying.
Credit Transfer Issues: