Fall 2017
 Intercultural Communication Course
Critical Thinking 


Amanda Emma, UConn

Many people wonder about the perks of studying abroad. Students each have a personal motivation that led them to embark on this adventure – however it’s to be considered a powerful teacher to learn about oneself, others, and new cultures.

What I can tell you about my benefit of studying abroad is that I have started to appreciate the differences between European and North American lifestyles.

Initially I did experience a slight culture shock. However now, after only a month of being here, I’m finding it interesting and positively challening to adapt to my new environment. I enjoy the morning coffee at a local cafè (that Italian call ‘il bar’) and I appreciate the envornmental awarness I’m aquiring in order to sort the garbage into the correct waste bins (plastic, cans, glass paper, organic, and residual waste!).

With just small changes to behaviours and assumptions and you can get a sense of what Italian culture looks like. Some say Europeans go at a slower pace – well, after living in Italy for a month, I can say that what they have is a relaxed lifestyle. Wine is a staple product that brings people together, dinner is where you get to end your day with the ones you care about most, art is all around you and it tells such a historic tale.

Studying abroad in Florence is shaping my idea on quality of life, and I truly appreciate and value the Italian way!


Victoria Gavras, UConn

The moment I knew I wanted to study abroad in Europe occurred after hearing amazing stories from a friend’s exprience in Florence last semester. Her memories were like a dream to me, I felt I wanted to do the same.

After being here for just three weeks, I can assure you that she was right about everything. Living and studying in Florence will be life changing. Waking up in a city that holds so much historical significance feels like a dream come true. I’ve also had the chance to travel to other countries like Croatia, Greece, and Frence, broadening my horizons even more. The life-long friends I’m making along the way and all I am learning about Florence and myself are priceless. Every time I think about this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, I can’t help but feel grateful and appreciative that I am able to have this semester abroad, one that my parents never had the chance to have in their college careers. With every view I see, museum I visit, activity I take part in, picture I take, and video I shoot, I constantly hold my parents in my thoughts and heart. I know the immense happiness they have at the thought of me always having these memories to cherish. I am not only studying abroad for myself, but so I can carry my experiences back home to share with my family and friends.


Nicolette Archul, Qunnipiac University

I haven’t yet met someone in my life that hasn’t loved the taste of amazing food. Well, Florence is the place to come if your taste buds are your friends. Warm truffle pasta, a heart shaped pizza, a meatball with fresh tomato sauce, prosciutto crudo, tomato and mozzarella, bread, extra virgin olive oil, Florentine steak… these are just some of my favorites.

This place provides no bad meal. Go out and experience the dishes and ingredients that could never be created anywhere else. Between the fresh vegetables, homemade bread and pasta, and pizza made with italian love. The food dishes that are available in Florence are nothing like Italian restaurants in the States. The atmosphere and food itself are uncomparable.

Everyone that visits or studies in Florence will agree with me, but now it’s time to find out for yourself!


Shaye Capasso, Qunnipiac University

If you want the best experience of a lifetime: study abroad!

Studying abroad allows for so many different opportunities to discover such as: new cultures, new foods, and traveling. It is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and after a month I couldn’t be happier that I chose to study abroad in Florence, Italy. Every weekend I travel and explore European countries which all have pecularties and distinctive features.

The food differences is what strikes me the most: not only each country has national dishes, but it narrows down to regional dishes, and to town dishes. For instance, pesto alla genovese (basil and pinenut pasta sauce) is from Genova, mozzarella di bufala campana (a full fat ‘bufalo milk cheese) is from Caserta, bistecca alla fiorentina (a high cut steak from the Tuscan breed of cattle Chianina) is from Florence. And what I enjoy the most is travelling to European countries and tasting the wide variety of traditional dishes.

I will never take this amazing opportunity for granted.