Study at ISI Florence
Established in 2001, ISI Florence is a study abroad program rooted in the liberal arts tradition. Internationally recognized for the high caliber of its faculty and wide range of excellent student services, ISI Florence is committed to providing students with a safe and rewarding educational experience of exceptional quality both in and out of the classroom, supported by a wide variety of cultural immersion and exchange opportunities. True to its extraordinary setting in the cradle of the Renaissance, ISI aims to develop in all students a desire for learning that will make their semester abroad a life-changing experience. Finally, ISI also functions as a consortium for public universities. To date, the ISI consortium includes the following American and Australian universities: ASU, PSU, UConn, UVA, and University of Melbourne. Consortium membership provides a number of significant assets, from heavy discounts on tuition and fees to enrollment priority and the possibility of drafting curricula with partner institutions so as to best serve the students’ academic needs while abroad.
With its several thousand years of civilization woven into its legendary urban texture, Florence embodies all that the Renaissance sought to bring back to life. Bordered by its famous countryside of pine- and cypress-dotted hills, lush vineyards, and olive groves, the Florence of today is an innovative European cultural center, as well as a university city. While living in Florence, students will have the opportunity to walk the same medieval streets as Dante, look upon the great works of Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci, and stand within the massive halls that housed Medici business, all built on top of long-forgotten Roman ruins. Iconic Via Tornabuoni offers insights into Florence’s thriving love of fashion in the shadow of Brunelleschi’s great dome, Santa Maria del Fiore. Surrounded by statuesque relics of the Renaissance and the push of progress, Florence offers both a depth of ancient character and melding of past, present, and future.
Acedemic Programs: Semester and Year-long
The Institute offers courses in a wide range of subjects, including: studio arts and art history, history and political science, Italian language and literature, international business and interdisciplinary studies in the humanities. Courses are designed to integrate the local resources and immerse students into the Florentine environment through on-site learning. A variety of co-curricular activities such as field trips, museum visits, academic tours, and artistic performances complement the rich cultural offerings.
General Studies Program
The Institute offers a General Studies Program, which is widely recognized for its diversity and excellence. All students are required to take Italian language for a total of 4 credits. An array of elective courses in English (3 credits each) is available in various subject areas.
The history of design embraces different views – old versus new, traditional versus the vision of the architect: the ISI Architecture Program takes students on a semester-long journey into the heart of this ongoing dialogue. Through a combination of academic excellence and professional experience, students will find a balance between creation and conservation, aesthetics and technical quality, national and international perspectives.
The program was established in 2001 in cooperation with the Roger Williams University School of Architecture, which still maintains its own study abroad program here at ISI.
The Architecture Program provides students with a wealth of opportunities to work alongside Italian and European architects, skilled instructors who liaise with local communities and institutions in their own urban context.
Designed for qualified students who have completed at least two years of architectural studies, the program aims to inspire and stimulate intellectual growth while also proving the practical skills to prepare pursue a professional career.
ISI is a place where creativity meets practical know-how – a compelling milieu for any aspiring architect.
Sustainable Food and Environmental Systems Program
The SFESP is tailored for undergraduate students of agricultural sciences, environmental studies, nutrition science, economics, business administration, sociology and history, as well as for those generally interested in food and sustainability studies.
The program invites students to explore the social, cultural, political, ecological, and economic implications of how food is produced, transformed, distributed, prepared, and consumed in Italy. Students will have the opportunity to learn directly from Italian farmers and producers, sales and marketing professionals, chefs.
Field experiences and study tours, ranging from one to four days, include:
Students may design a program centered on a particular field of interest by creating a thematic study plan. If interested in this option, students can consult their advisors at their home institutions to develop the customized curricular concentration that best fits their needs and interests. The complete list of the courses that would be appropriate to each concentration can be found on our website.
Acedemic Programs: Summer Program
The Summer Program consists of a variety of elective courses (3 credits each) taken from our General Studies Program. While students are not required to take Italian language, they will spend an intensive 6-week period exploring the other classes available to them, all of which are recognized for their highly qualified professors and academic content. These courses are available in various subject areas.
ISI Florence Highlights
• State-of-the-art facilities.
• International faculty and staff.
• Availability for pre-departure questions.
• Airport pick-up in Florence and transfer to private apartments.
• Two-day orientation including practical city walking tour.
• Opportunity to buy or rent Italian cell phones and SIM cards during orientation.
• Co-curricular field trips to world-renowned historic sites and famous cities.
• Mandatory Italian language courses to learn practical communication skills.
• A variety of extracurricular activities.
• Communication: Wi-Fi in all student apartments and throughout our facilities.
• Student Handbook.
• Emergency hotline available 24/7.
This program is not approved by the Italian studies department for credit towards the major or minor.