4 Ways to Start the Year off Right When you Study in Italy

JCU students live and study in the Trastevere neighborhood in the heart of Rome

JCU students live and study in the Trastevere neighborhood in the heart of Rome

If this is your first semester studying abroad in Italy, then you’re in for the experience of a lifetime.
Studying abroad comes with so many opportunities to grow, explore, evolve, and challenge yourself in ways you never imagined.

How can you make sure you seize every single one?

Here are a few tips – from tapping into internship opportunities to exploring the hidden gems in your neighborhood – to help you make the most of the year ahead!

1. Explore Your Surroundings & Connect with Classmates

Getting out there and exploring Rome and its surroundings – or connecting with other students through an organized activity – is an ideal way to experience Italy and make new friends.

Not sure where to begin? Check out the John Cabot University Cultural Program. The Program organizes activities and trips for students throughout the year. What’s up next in January? A tour of Rome’s center, an Italian cooking class (with fresh, local, organic ingredients!), and an amazing trip to a Roman olive grove followed by a pizza-making master class. Book now because spots fill up fast.

Students learn to cook with fresh local ingredients during one of JCU's cooking classes

Students learn to cook with fresh local ingredients during one of JCU’s cooking classes

2. Venture out into the Trastevere Neighborhood

An organized trip isn’t the only way you can become familiar with, and settle into, life in Rome. The JCU campus and student housing are located in the neighborhood of Trastevere, which offers plenty of sightseeing opportunities for students.

Start your year by exploring the winding cobblestone streets, 16th century stucco homes, quaint cafes, eclectic shops, and other hidden gems tucked away in Trastevere. Or, enjoy an evening with friends at the piazza Santa Maria, the center of Trastevere’s social scene.

Piazza Santa Maria, in the heart of Trastevere

Piazza Santa Maria, in the heart of Trastevere

3. Book One-on-one Time with Your Professor

Whether you plan to study humanities in Italy or are pursuing a degree in International Business – taking the time to meet individually with your professors can really help set the stage for a successful spring term.

Check in with your professors during office hours to discuss your goals and track your progress

Check in with your professors during office hours to discuss your goals and track your progress

Check in with your professors during office hours to discuss your goals and track your progress
Book a short visit with your professors during office hours to discuss your plans for the first major assignment of the term. This might be an essay, a presentation, or a group project. Being proactive in this way can help you confirm that you’re on the right track with your project plans, build rapport with your professor, and ensure you understand exactly what’s expected of you for each course you take.

Plus, meeting individually with each prof will help you feel more at home in his or her classroom. This is especially important for shy students who need encouragement to speak up and participate more in group discussions.

4. Investigate Internships While You Study in Italy

If you’re just starting your first year at JCU, you still have plenty of time before you start thinking about applying for internships (students need to have at least sophomore standing to apply).

However, if you’d like to gain work experience in your field before graduating, it would be a good idea to visit the Center for Career Services and browse JCU’s Internship Catalog to see which positions interest you the most. You will discover the qualifications you need to be eligible for an internship – and then can work toward achieving those goals well before you apply.

If you’re an American citizen intent on pursuing an internship this year, we suggest reviewing application deadlines and procedures as soon as possible. Some organizations like FAO, WFP, IFAD, IDLO and the US Embassy require that American students apply directly through their websites, months in advance.

Looking up those deadlines early could help you avoid missing out on a terrific opportunity!

Are you looking for study abroad and degree-seeking programs at English speaking universities in Italy?

Visit John Cabot University to learn more about our degree programs, internship opportunities, and admissions procedure.

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