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IES Abroad Rome - Semester/Year Program

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    9

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Rome became my second home

I knew for years, even before college, that I wanted to study abroad for a semester in college. As just a freshman in college, at The College of Wooster, I decided to apply to IES Abroad's Rome program for the Spring semester of my Sophomore year. I knew Rome would be an amazing opportunity for me since I am a Classical Studies and Archaeology double major--but my experience abroad exceeded even my expectations. Through IES, I was able to live with an incredible host family who made me instantly feel at home and provided me with an unparalleled cultural immersion experience. I also was able to participate in an archaeology internship with the American Academy in Rome, which proved to be incredibly valuable to my career goals and educational experience. Additionally, through IES's classes, I learned an unbelievable amount about the city I was living in--its people, its political and cultural past, its archaeology, and more. I also was able to learn Italian at a faster pace than I could ever have done in the U.S. (something my host family also played a major role in as well). Overall, I had the most memorable experiences, learned many valuable life skills and lessons, met so many incredible people, and I would do it all over again in heartbeat. I'm mid-semester at my home institution and still I think of Rome and Italy often, but I know I'll return to the city I called home for months--it's just a matter of when and not if!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    9

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

La vita bella

The best part of a semester abroad is the opportunity to truly live in another country. While this may seem obvious, anyone who has studied abroad will tell you that living in a country is so much more than just visiting it. During my semester in Rome, I truly felt like I was immersed in the culture and the country. Instead of a homestay, I chose to live in a program-sponsored apartment. One unique component of this was the chance to live with an Italian roommate. My roommate Lorenzo helped us with everything from the language to getting around the city while avoiding the crowds if possible. I soon realized that making espresso in our little kitchen and getting fresh vegetables at the market was much more of a Roman experience that just being able to walk by the Colosseum or the Vatican everyday (though that was nice too). IES not only encouraged us to reach out to the locals, but gave us the chance to live among them and like them. Roma o morte!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    9

IES Rome was inspiring, exciting, and "speciale"

This program had it all: the freedom to travel around Europe, the ability to live with an Italian family, an inclusive and planned trip to Tuscany or Amalfi, amazing academics, but most importantly, the ability to make a difference while having a blast in la Bella Roma. In our time here, I feel we were able to leave an impact or a part of us in Rome; we became parts of the community rather than long-term tourists. The internship program really shaped my time in Rome. Some of my friends curated art galleries, others worked alongside chefs, and some taught in Italian schools (and didn't have to be fluent to do so.) I was able to get a first-hand look at the refugee crisis in Rome, through my public policy class (that had many great speakers and field trips) and my social action internship. I taught refugees English through IES, and it added such a meaningful dimension to my semester. My different IES professors were phenomenal teachers, who brought the city to us in the classroom and us out into the city on various field studies. I saw St. Peter's tomb and the underground necropolis there, I did a bike tour of Villa Borghese with my Italian class, and I visited an ethnic market in Rome's multicultural neighborhood. I never felt like I was stuck in the classroom. Although you have the option of living in apartments, I choose to live in a homestay, and it was a great decision for me. I learned a lot about the Italian culture while living in the very-hopping area of Trastevere, along with other homestay students. All in all, it was a fantastic program in a breath-taking city.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    7

  • Cultural Immersion

    3

  • Program Administration

    5

  • Health and Safety

    5

  • Social Life

    7

Rome spring 2016

My semester in Rome was incredible. Getting the opportunity to live and intern in Rome, a city I had always dreamed of visiting, was absolutely amazing. There was always something to do and another hidden treasure to find. The classes I took were interesting and actually helped to enhance my experience. I wish I could go back to eating incredible food and drinking fantastic wine every day.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Quando a Roma!

I could not be happier that I decided to spend my semester abroad in ROME! First, I was able to live with with not just four other American students from around the country but also roomed with an Italian student from Rome! This was great because I got to hang out with Americans and had my own personal guide to Rome and everything Italian! IES students also live in the best area of the city and the max walk to the center is about 25 minutes! The center itself is right near the Vatican and Castel sant'Angelo which is my favorite view of the city! The IES center in Rome is great, they just renovated it this summer and it is placed on the two top floors of a building with a roof where I usually ate lunch, soaked up some sun, or just hung out when I wasn't doing a bit of studying up there! The academics are stellar! From an Art Historical and Religious studies point of view, IES professors actually have worked with many of the art works or archaeological sites that we saw on field studies or learned about in the classroom! All of my professors were interesting and I probably could have listened to them talk for another hour every week! The best part about IES courses is that 2/3 of your class time every week is spent in the field! Although I had to do a bit of studying around Exam time, I think that I was able to learn so much without having to really buckle down! This was a great semester because I had a break and was able to travel! Rome was a great location for getting from city to city if country to country during the weekends and afternoons! I had such an enriching experience traveling around europe but mostly from my experiences in Italy! I got to enrich myself in the culture without having to jump too far outside of my comfort zone! If I could do it all again I would pick the same program! The program was so amazing that I ended up staying in Rome with IES for an 8 week summer Internship program!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    9

La Bella Vita in Roma

My study aboard experience in Rome with IES was better than I ever could have imagined! During my time abroad I lived in a homestay and was also able to work for a local tour company as an intern. Both of these aspects of my time abroad were highlights for me because they allowed me to truly feel immersed in my city and it’s culture. And neither of these aspects of my trip would have been possible without IES and their great staff on site in Rome. Additionally, the classes that I took at my center were incredible. The professors were all kind, engaging, and helped me to make the most of my experience. It was truly an amazing and life changing experience. I would recommend IES Rome to anyone who is looking to study abroad!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Roman Around!

I would recommend the IES – Roma Language and Area Studies to anyone that was looking to study abroad in Rome. First, I felt as though the IES staff did an excellent job of preparing me for going abroad. The website had specific instructions for everything that I needed to complete, and there was always someone there to help if I was confused or had questions, This made me feel more prepared and confident before I left the United States. Once I was there, the staff was equally as helpful. They sent emails every week letting us know of any safety issue that may occur and offering different activities throughout the week. In addition, the apartment that I lived in was great- very clean and plenty of space for 8 girls. The location that the IES Abroad center was located was extremely central. Finally, the classes that I took there were great as well. I loved being able to see and experience different things that I was learning about in class on field studies. The professors were very eager to teach their students and were very knowledgeable about the subjects they were teaching and about Rome in general. I really had a great time in Rome and it wouldn’t have been possible without IES!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Bella Roma!

I had an AMAZING experience with IES Abroad Rome. It seriously was life changing and I became such a stronger and more independent person because of it. I lived in an apartment with an ISC (Italian Student Companion) and six other American girls. These girls are still some of my best friends today and we continually plan to meet up to see each other. The center itself was beautiful and the instructors were very knowledgeable. The classes were so interesting and I loved going on field studies every week to see the city and learn about the history and art of Rome. My favorite part about IES Abroad is that you are truly able to immerse yourself into the culture as much or as little as you want. If you want to increase your Italian skills, you can take higher levels of Italian and even can study at local Italian Universities. If you want to participate in cooking activities or olive oil tastings, you can sign up for that. It truly was a great experience and I’m looking forward to the day I return to Rome and reunite with my IES Abroad classmates!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

In Bocca al Lupo

Italians say "in bocca al lupo" when wishing someone good luck. The most literal translation is "in the mouth of a wolf." My study abroad experience can be captured in this small phrase. The four months I spent in Rome were about getting outside of my comfort zone, experiencing new things, and embracing a new culture and lifestyle. As part of my daily life in Rome, I was fortunate to have participated in a social action program. I was placed as an English TA at a local high school, where I was able to meet dozens of kind and passionate students, some of whom have become my lifelong friends. This challenging experience allowed me to form wonderful relationships of reciprocity, which made it that much harder to leave Rome at the end of my study abroad program. Rome is truly the most beautiful city, rich with history, and full of adventure. If you find yourself there, embrace every moment, because I guarantee that your experience will leave you with a renewed perspective and passion for life. In bocca al lupo!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    8

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Semester in Rome

This program was all I wanted and more in my study abroad experience. While classes and academics were laughably easy, the courses were incredibly interesting and I learned a great deal about Italian culture and history. The professors are top academics in their fields and their immense passion for their disciplines is evident. Most student living arrangements are in the heart of Rome and in great, safe locations. Unique to this program is the Italian Student Companion (ISC) option where students can choose to live with students from the program and one Italian college student. ISCs really add to the cultural immersion experience, especially if you speak Italian. Overall, this program was the best semester of my life!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    8

  • Social Life

    8

The Happiest Months of my Life

There are so many experiences that I will remember and carry through my whole life that to narrow it down to one is nothing short of a tragedy. Nevertheless, one experience that I particularly treasure is the weekend trip that we as a program took to the Amalfi Coast. After enjoying what was likely the best meal of my life at the foot of Mount Vesuvius and exploring Napoli for a day we took our bus along the Divine Coast and down to a coastal town. We spent the day exploring the quaint seaside town, lounging on a spectacular beach, and basking in the warm Mediterranean sun. We then took a boat ride along the coast, in the process seeing some breathtaking sights.

I decided to go to Rome because it has always been a city that I dreamed of visiting because of its history and the many sights to see there. I also have been studying Italian for a little over a year, which in all honesty was unnecessary as most people there speak English. I chose this program specifically because my university (Indiana) sponsored it, essentially meaning that all my credits would transfer automatically and that I would receive some financial aid from the school. Through reading reviews like this I discovered that this was a highly regarded program and that the classes actually expected you to put some effort in, unlike some of the other programs, for which you actually learn a ton about the city among other things. IES also had a good internship program, which I took advantage of. Financially it wasn't unreasonable.

The five of us Americans lived in a nice, fairly spacious, apartment in one of the nicer areas of the city, both in terms of location and quality of the neighborhood. It was about a thirty minute walk to the school, which in terms of the size of the city isn't unreasonable at all. The furniture was pretty good, as was the TV and internet connection. The appliances were a little more outdated than I was used to but worked well enough. We also took advantage of the program's option to live with an Italian Student, who was extremely helpful and friendly and with whom I still keep in contact with.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    8

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    7

  • Social Life

    8

The Happiest Months of my Life

IES Roma is truly a fantastic program that enabled me to enjoy an amazing experience in the Eternal City. The location (about a 5 minute walk from the Vatican!) is perfectly nestled right along the Tiber River in the historic center of the city. The classes were engaging and relevant, but not over-burdensome in terms of workload; in other words don't expect blow-off classes, but I never felt overwhelmed or unable to take weekend trips due to classwork. Additionally field trips are never lacking as professors will take you to museums, landmarks, and other spots of intrigue on a weekly basis. The program also does a great job of keeping you informed regardless of the occasion. Their are tons of extracurriculars as well, which were great ways to bond with my fellow students outside of the classroom. I played in a soccer league, participated in cooking classes, and dined with my classmates in some of Rome's renowned restaurants at a subsidized cost. The administration is very nice and helpful and they maintain a good balance between keeping you safe and not holding your hand as you experience your semester in a foreign location. I look back on my all-too-brief time in Rome with a fondness beyond words. While the city of Rome in itself is an incredible place overflowing with beauty and history that couldn't help but amaze everyone that has the fortune to visit, I strongly believe that IES is a special program that helped me relish and experience Rome to its fullest.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    10

  • Social Life

    10

Best Experience

Picking one memorable experience seems nearly impossible. The entire semester was filled with amazing experiences. If I had to pick one experience, I would say the amazing day I spent at a small, family-owned olive oil farm. A group of friends and I spent the day raking olives from trees, eating amazing food, and spending time with great people. This was the definition of cultural immersion, and a day that I will remember for the rest of my life!

I chose my program after meeting with a girl from my school who had just completed a semester with IES Rome. She told me a story about her getting very sick, and one of the IES Rome staff members drove her to the hospital and stayed with her the entire time. She talked very highly of all the IES Rome staff members and their commitment to making sure you have the best study abroad experience possible. Leaving home to live in another country for 4 months can be extremely scary. IES Rome made it easy!

I lived in an apartment with 5 other girls, 1 being an Italian student. I shared a room with 2 other people. We had 2 bathrooms for the 6 of us. Our apartment was about 15 minutes away from our school, right in the heart of Rome. The apartment was pretty old, but we had everything we needed (except a microwave)!

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    10

Best Experience of my Life

My time in Rome was the best 4 months of my life. I met amazing people, ate the most delicious food, and lived in a magical city. IES Rome helps you to immerse yourself in the Italian culture and teaches you how to feel comfortable in your new surroundings.

Living Situation:
I lived in an apartment with 5 other girls. The only problems we had involved maintenance issues in the apartment such as lack of hot water. This did NOT affect my overall study abroad experience in the least.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    10

  • Living Situation

    8

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    8

  • Social Life

    8

La Vita è Bella a Roma

My semester in Rome was incredible, and IES Abroad played a huge role in making my journey so memorable!

I would recommend IES Rome: Language and Area Studies to anyone who is looking to participate in an internship or service opportunity abroad. It seems daunting, but IES makes it so easy to find an internship that fits you. Before even going abroad, I was contacted by an IES staff member who noted that I was interested in an internship. She wanted to learn more about my interests so she could find me a good placement. She also reviewed my resume with me. She put me in touch with a potential employer (who ended up being my future employer), who also contacted me before leaving the States. I worked in the archaeology study collection of the American Academy in Rome. I had a blast and I learned so much. I know my international work experience will be very important in my future career. Throughout the semester, IES staff contacted me to make sure I was enjoying my internship.

I also have to comment on the academics. Frankly, when going abroad, I did not have high expectations for my professors. Knowing that they only know students for one or two semesters, I expected a lack of passion. I was very, VERY wrong. IES Rome has incredible professors who are both extremely enthusiastic about their disciplines and are genuinely interested in the success of their students. I had some of my most favorite teachers and courses at IES out of my whole undergraduate career!

Of course, Rome itself is such a beautiful city. The way in which the past mingles with the present is simply not found anywhere else. I was stunned to discover that the IES center is so close to the Vatican and right across the bridge from the amazing Castel Sant’Angelo.

The study abroad experience, though only four months long, has changed me for a lifetime. I am more confident, independent and tolerant. I am more likely to see difference as beautiful. Study abroad has made me a brave and curious student.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    6

  • Living Situation

    4

  • Cultural Immersion

    7

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Social Life

    10

Abroad Sweet Abroad

I dove into my study abroad experience with little to no expectations. I wasn’t much of a traveler before studying with IES Abroad in Rome – I had been to Canada and Italy with my family before but can’t remember much about my experiences. I was too young to appreciate my surroundings, and, to be totally candid, family vacations aren’t exactly the kind of travel adventures a tween romanticizes later in life.

And so, with my limited knowledge of travel and growing knowledge of Italian culture and language in college, I decided to go to Rome and embark on my own whimsical adventure abroad.

I could tell you a million cliché phrases that encapsulate my experience abroad, so I’m just going to say this: I learned, I grew, I saw, and I lived – oh, how I lived! Every day was an adventure. I lived near the Vatican, so walking to school every day meant fighting through crowds of tourists while simultaneously drinking in the beauty of Rome on my daily passing of Saint Peter’s and the Castel Sant’Angelo. The men selling selfie-sticks on the bridge in front of the Castel began to recognize me and, eventually, the bridge became a second home where I would read between classes and meet friends for a night out. In fact, the entire city of Rome became home towards the end of my program. I was able to off-handedly identify hills, landmarks, and monuments, as well as streets and random history about the socio-political framework of the city. My daily wanderings around Rome, combined with weekend adventures, in-class lectures by brilliant professors, and my internship with an Italian film company, deepened my appreciation and knowledge of Rome – and Italy as a whole – with regards to art, culture, geography, sociology, politics, and language.

My comfort with living in Rome helped me explore places outside of the city, starting with peripheral neighborhoods like Garbatella and San Lorenzo, and eventually branching out to other regions of Italy. For spring break, I took a leap of maturity and went to Turkey and Greece with my friends, which is something tween Adrienne never saw coming. Come March, I was booking my own travels, making my own itineraries, and researching new places to explore. After my program ended, I visited different parts of England and Sicily before finally returning back to the states.

Being abroad raised my confidence to levels I never knew I could reach. Exploring, making new (amazing/lifelong) friends, immersing myself in a different culture and language, and working hard in my IES courses showed me that I am both my greatest tool and obstacle. If I choose to live in ignorance, so be it. However, if I choose to educate myself, break out of my comfort zone, and stay curious, I am unstoppable.

After studying abroad, the world has become smaller and less intimidating -- though infinitely more interesting.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Social Life

    8

  • Health and Safety

    7

  • Program Administration

    5

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Living Situation

    8

  • Academics

    10

IES Rome: Seeing is Believing

During IES Rome students are able to see museums, monuments, archeological sites, and even villas all during class time. These are all aspects of the field study based education system that the program has for its students. I loved this aspect because learning about something in a classroom only gets you so far. Hearing a lecture about a monument on a Monday and seeing it on a Wednesday made the history, art, politics, and culture of Rome come alive. Seeing the typical sites in Rome with the aid of the professor really pushed us from being tourists to becoming locals. I loved the passion of the professors, who taught every class with an incredible amount of enthusiasm that rubbed off on the students and motivated us to explore our new home even more.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    6

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    6

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Social Life

    9

Exhilarating, immersive, challenging, diversity, rewarding

My memorable experience are the late nights at Giancolo.

I've always been attracted to the Italian culture and love living in cities, so Rome was a perfect choice for me.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    9

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    8

  • Social Life

    10

An Incredible Experience

One of my most memorable experiences was getting to be in Rome when the new Pope was elected. I remember my roommate and I were walking home from class one night and we had stopped for cannoli on the way from a Sicilian place near our apartment. When we got back home a friend had the tv turned on to the news and we saw white smoke, we immediately notified everyone and started running through the streets of Rome to head to Vatican City. We got to be there in the crowded piazza when Papa Francesco spoke his first words on the balcony to the people of Rome and since he is from Argentina he spoke clear and simple Italian so we were able to understand him which was so cool. Definitely a night that I will never forget.

I chose IES Roma because I heard it was a great program and already knew students who had been on it previously.

I lived in an apartment with 4 other girls, it was really spacious. There were two people to a room, one living/dining room and a kitchen with a breakfast table. There is no air conditioning and sometimes the hot water runs out but that is not a big deal! I always felt really safe in my living accommodations. We had balconies which were so nice to sit out on when the weather was good.

Overall Rating

9/ 10

  • Academics

    9

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    9

  • Health and Safety

    8

  • Social Life

    10

An Incredible Experience

I absolutely loved my study abroad experience and highly recommend the program IES Roma. I had an apartment in Rome with 4 other girls and it was perfect sized! Although the hot water didn't always work and there wasn't air conditioning I really felt like I was living like a true Roman. You get used to it pretty quickly and realize that it doesn't really matter because hey, I'm in Rome! I recommend signing up to live with an Italian Student Companion (ISC) because they introduce you to their friends and can take you to bars and places to eat that they normally go to with their friends! It is fun getting to know the locals. The ISCs are also our age and are students at one of the local universities so they become just another one of the friends that you become so close with while abroad!!! You learn a lot of great recipes from them as well and most times get to meet their families if they live close by. They also really help you figure out the metro and the bus system which is super helpful. All of the classes that I took abroad were so interesting and I learned so much about Rome! I recommend taking any class that has field studies because that way you get to experience museums and other sites that you wouldn't normally get to on your own! The field trips are great, I highly recommend the one to Tuscany. All of the staff was really helpful and I always felt comfortable asking them questions. They definitely made us feel safe in Rome.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    5

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    9

  • Program Administration

    5

  • Health and Safety

    7

  • Social Life

    7

Wonderful experience abroad for a semester

I loved my time in Rome with IES Abroad. I had trouble deciding between a few programs, but I went with IES because of the many options that the program provided. I was able to choose to live in a homestay, with a host brother, mother, father, and various other relatives. They were extremely inviting, made me laugh and feel safe and comfortable, made the most delicious food I have ever tasted in my entire life, and truly helped me improve my Italian language skills. I learned so much about Italian culture and ways of life from living in a homestay. I lived within a 5 minutes walk from some of my best friends in the program, who also had chosen homestays. IES Abroad did a great job placing students with kind, open families. In addition, my homestay was in the neighborhood of Trastevere, which is very lively neighborhood.
I had an amazing time with the optional excursions that IES Abroad organized, as well. I really enjoyed all the optional excursions, extra classes, tutoring sessions, and night events that IES sponsored. Weekend trips to places in Italy that I never would have gone to on my own were also a surprise added benefit of choosing IES! I would definitely recommend this program.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    9

  • Living Situation

    8

  • Cultural Immersion

    7

  • Program Administration

    8

  • Health and Safety

    7

  • Social Life

    9

A Short Stay In An Eternal City

My IES abroad experience was one I would not trade for anything in the world. Aside from my beautiful apartment (seriously, I was shocked at just how gorgeous is was), my adorable neighborhood, my ideal location in the heart of Rome, and my awesome roommates, the IES staff both in Rome and in Chicago (where their headquarters are located) were extremely helpful and welcoming throughout both the application process and the duration of my stay in Rome. The IES center was beautiful and conveniently located just a few short minutes from the Vatican, and right along the Tiber river. My apartment was just a 20 minute walk from school (something I dreaded at first, then began to enjoy once I got there). Though the center was located it a highly touristy area, being from New York, I enjoyed the excitement and slight chaos the city offered, and although the area near school was busy, my neighborhood was cozy and quiet and very much residential; I got the best of both worlds. My classes were very different from any I would take a Fordham, and I enjoyed each one immensely and learned a great deal from each, things I would have never learned previously. Each week (usually multiple times a week) my classes would have field studies, where we would go to historical or relevant locations and learn first hands the topics we studied. I went everywhere from the Coliseum to Saint Peter's Basilica, to the Roman Ruins, even to Florence to visit the Uffizi Gallery and the Academia museum. My professors were not only passionate about their work, but engaging and helpful as well. They became more like mentors and friends than teachers and the entire IES staff made us feel like one big family despite the 90 students in the program. Additionally, there were various activities both within and outside the program we were constantly notified about, I even got to go to Easter mass at Saint Peter's and hear Pope Francis speak. I was also given the option (which I chose) to live with an Italian student companion, along with the 4 other American girls in my program. This was great because it gave us more insight into the Italian culture and someone to show us around and expose us to more places, people, and things. Overall, my experience with IES and in Rome in general was unlike any other I have ever experienced, I am extremely happy with the decision I made and I am proud to say I now consider Rome a second home to me and am excited for my next opportunity to return.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Social Life

    3

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Living Situation

    7

  • Academics

    5

Solid Program

I participated in the Fall 2014 program. Overall it was an amazing experience and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Rome is an absolutely beautiful and amazing city and I cannot say enough good things about it. The teachers and program staff are some of the kindest and most helpful people I have ever met. They truly care about your time abroad and want to to have the time of your life. I lived in apartment with an Italian Student Companion (ISC) and five other girls. I would definitely recommend living with an ISC. My ISC completely enhanced my abroad experience and it was so nice to live with someone who was a native Italian. The apartment was nice and spacious and about a 25 minute walk to the center.
The classes are not nearly as rigorous as those at my home institution, but the subject material is so interesting and you have field trips in every class throughout the city. I highly recommend any class with Gianni Ponti.
Personally, IES was not the best social situation. My roommates were an absolute nightmare (with the exception of the ISC) and the other participants were particularly cliquey. As a result I would be hesitant to recommend this program to people, but I still had the experience of a lifetime.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Program Administration

    7

  • Health and Safety

    8

  • Social Life

    10

Experience of a Lifetime

My most memorable experience was seeing the papal inauguration of Pope Francis. I was able to see Pope Benedict XVI's last papal audience and then see Pope Francis' first papal audience. Being apart of these historical moments were something I'll never forget. News reporters and important world leaders from all over the world came to witness these events too, making it even more exciting.

I chose IES Rome because I knew I wanted to study in Italy and experience the Italian culture, food and lifestyle. My options were between Florence, Milan, Sienna, Florence, and Rome. After visiting all of these places during my stay, I know I made the right decision choosing Rome. There's so much history, so much to do and see. If I had to choose all over again, I would choose Rome hands down.

As far as living goes, students either chose to live in a homestay or apartment. I lived in an apartment in the Trastevere neighborhood. Students mostly lived in either Trastevere, Prati or Monte Verde neighborhoods if they lived in apartments. Apartments had everything provided for us- bedding, kitchen supplies, furniture, etc.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    9

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Program Administration

    7

  • Health and Safety

    9

  • Social Life

    10

Experience of a Lifetime

Looking back on my experience with IES Abroad in Rome, Italy are some of the best memories of my life. The classes were Monday-Thursday and mostly lasted a majority of the day. It was difficult to adjust to "high school" type hours of school, but the work load was definitely manageable and reasonable. Most classes spent 1 day a week in class and 1 day a week doing "field studies". Field Studies consisted of going with the professor to on-site locations (museums, Vatican, Colosseum, Pantheon, Roman Forum, etc.) An italian language course was required for every student to take. Students were also given the opportunity to participate in internships throughout the city. The program also included a trip with IES in our tuition. I went to Pompeii and Naples on my trip, and I wouldn't recommend it. I would recommend Tuscany or Almalfi if given those options. Overall, I think the faculty is helpful and attempts to accommodate every students needs. Certain requirements can be frustrating and there are some things I would've changed. However, if given the opportunity to do it all over again, I would. It's not all about the program you choose- it's about the experience and memories you create outside of school while you're there, as well.