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Wells College in Florence, Italy

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    7

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    10

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

Top program in Florence

From the orientation week to the living situation, this was by far the most fun, organized program out of all that I've experienced or heard about. Professor Renzi makes the orientation fun and educational, while giving students the freedom to explore by themselves.

Academics are easy, but interesting if you chose the right courses. I'm glad that my classes (tues/wed/thurs) did not take up much of my time because it allowed me to enjoy Florence and all that Europe had to offer. Classes offered weekly field trips throughout the city, as well as lots of discussion, rather than lectures.

Our apartment was in the middle of the city on the Ponte Vecchio, which was ideal, as we were immersed in the city, apposed to other programs that house students outside of the city or in poorer areas.

Overall, the most fun semester of my college experience. Made great friends and traveled around Europe in a manner only made possible by our program's schedule and flexibility.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    3

  • Living Situation

    8

  • Cultural Immersion

    8

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

See Walker Saik's comments: he's dead on....

See Walker Saik's comments: he's dead on. The administration eases you in and provided plenty of help. The courses are not hard but I found them very informative. The art classes spend a ton of time actually looking at the art and you can't help but learn a lot that way. I found classes on Italian Lit to be the same way - it was translated but I was still talking to an Italian about it and learning plenty. Wine tasting might be a joke course - but it would stick with you for life!



I did find the program to include a lot of hard-core partiers and many students with limited interest in pure culture. But it was fun and we had plenty of time to travel. Apartments ranged from pretty and cozy to pretty fratty for the guys. I'm glad I didn't do a homestay because I traveled constantly. Some want to settle into Florence and get a very deep experience that way. I wanted a more broad European experience and the program was great for it.



In Sum: I miss it. I know when I go back - and I will - there won't be that feeling that I go to school there, live there, and have friends there.

Overall Rating

10/ 10

  • Academics

    5

  • Living Situation

    8

  • Cultural Immersion

    7

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

Academics weren't too rigorous, professors...

Academics weren't too rigorous, professors were great, awesome perks like soccer games, weekend trips, flights to/from and group dinners all included in the general cost.

Overall Rating

8/ 10

  • Academics

    3

  • Living Situation

    7

  • Cultural Immersion

    7

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

Here are the most memorable characteristics...

Here are the most memorable characteristics I have of this program:

1) Very easy course-load yet broad range of interesting courses. I only had classes three days a week (Tues thru Thurs) and never felt overburdened with work. Many of my courses involved field trips to various locations throughout the city and surrounding area. To be honest, even though courses were very easy, I never felt bored and found all of my courses pretty interesting.



2) The program is very organized on the front-end (i.e. orientation in Rome), allowing you to get formally introduced to Italian living before being "released." Following orientation, the program employed a personal advisor, who was always readily available, to help you with your own needs. Otherwise, the program let you be independent, other than several optional events to get the group together for a meal, soccer game, etc.



3) At least during my year, the program attracted a fair amount of partiers. Coupled with the fact that the Florence night scene can be VERY American, the party scene can get wild. This can make things pretty fun, but if you're only interested in cultural experiences, it could be a turn-off.



4) Florence's proximity to Europe's other major cities makes it a great hub for travel. Weekend trips to Paris, Munich, Sicily, Lake Como, Venice, Rome, Prague, and other great locations is not difficult. Grab yourself a EuroRail pass and go at it.



Personally, this program was 100% perfect for me. I wanted to travel and enjoy life without worrying about academics for a change, but I could understand how the wrong person at the wrong time could greatly dislike it...although I'd probably still question their sanity. The Henry's of the world would probably dislike it. Ha.

Overall Rating

7/ 10

  • Academics

    3

  • Living Situation

    10

  • Cultural Immersion

    7

  • Program Administration

    10

  • Health and Safety

    N/A

  • Social Life

    N/A

I did a home-stay option. It was the best...

I did a home-stay option. It was the best decision because I got to experience real Italian cooking and culture. I also got to get my host's perspective on all aspects. I feel as though people who simply stayed in an apartment didnt get nearly as much of a cultural experience. It was as if they were just visiting for 15 weeks. Conversely, by the end of the semester, I felt as though Florence was MY city.



Professors are great. Workload is very light (which is a good thing since you want to have time to travel and experience Florence itself). On-site administration is superb. The structured portion in Rome was great and needed because of the complexities of Rome and Vatican City. The program provided a guide in these areas and the experience was exponentially better because of this.



Overall, the program had the perfect balance of structure and freedom.