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What's the Dickinson in Italy Study Abroad Program Really Like?

Bologna Video Image

Bologna Video Image

Video by Joe O'Neill

Current students in a variety of majors speak out about their experiences abroad

So what’s the Dickinson in Italy study-abroad program all about? Find out from students who are studying abroad!

Dickinson’s education abroad program in Italy is set in Bologna, an important commercial, cultural and educational center that’s gloriously off the touristy beaten path.

“It's almost like walking through history: You have all of these buildings that are centuries old,” says Maya Harvey ’20 (international business & management). “And because we’re in such a great area culturally, we get to do a lot of excursions outside of the classroom.”

Students can enroll in one of two Dickinson in Italy programs: European studies, focusing on the social sciences and art, or Italian studies, focusing on language acquisition and cultural immersion. They take classes at the Dickinson Center in Italy, taught by Dickinson professors, and they also may enroll in classes at the University of Bologna and the Johns Hopkins School for International Studies graduate school.

Abbey Duell ’20, a music major focusing on opera, relishes the chance to study her art in the country where it was born, while Marcus Witherspoon ’20 (international business & management) is gaining a deeper perspective on the way that global economies work.

“Being able to be in a different country and really understand the intricacies of how business works, and the supply chain—that’s something that really interests me,” he says.

The fact that Dickinson has its own educational center in Bologna—offering small-size classes taught by Dickinson professors and the benefits of deep ties with local educational, cultural and community organizations—is a key distinguishing factor of the Dickinson in Italy program, one of 17 “Dickinson in” study-abroad programs. Those partnerships allow our students to take advantage of another key aspect of the “Dickinson in” experience—the opportunity to volunteer and intern in the local community and become a part of the fabric of Bologna life.

For Sean Dowd ’20 (international studies, Italian studies), that meant an exceptional educational and professional opportunity. As part of a Dickinson class on social activism in Italy, he volunteered to teach economics at a local high school.

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Published June 5, 2019