Program Overview

On this semester study abroad program in Florence designed specifically for Quinnipiac University, you will be a local in one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. Florence is an amazing location for cultural immersion, and its wealth of rich history and impressive art and architecture provide a perfect backdrop. The International Studies Institute (our academic base) focuses on creating an outstanding cultural environment where you’ll be able to nurture your talents while enjoying state of the art facilities and exceptional support and program activities.

GPA Requirement
3.0
Application Deadlines
Fall: March 15
Spring: October 1
Avg Course Load
4–5 classes (13–16 US credits)
Language(s) of Instruction
Italian and English
Highlights
  • Courses in your major, plus exciting electives focused on Italy and Florence
  • Europe and the rest of Italy within short reach
  • Lectures brought to life through academic site visits
  • Beautiful, historic and renovated state-of-the-art campus and facilities
  • A lifetime of history, art, and architecture in the birthplace of the Rennaissance
Your Journey Begins Here
  • Connect with your Global Advisor to start planning. Apply by the application deadline.

  • Meet your Program Coordinator to finalize acceptance paperwork, housing, courses, flights, visas, payments, etc. Attend a pre-departure orientation.

  • Fly away. You'll be greeted at the airport, participate in a robust On-site Orientation and La Vida Local Curriculum with your Site Director.

Academics

WHY THIS UNIVERSITY?

The International Studies Institute consists of two buildings, Palazzo Rucellai and Palazzo Bargagli, both situated in the heart of Florence. With magnificent monuments such as the Ponte Vecchio and the Basilica of Santa Croce just minutes from school, you’ll never have to complain about your walk to class. With the exception of your Italian-language course, all courses are taught in English and there is a wide variety to choose from.

ISI is located on the main floor of Palazzo Rucellai, a historic residential landmark designed in the mid-fifteenth century by Renaissance architect Leon Battista Alberti. Located in the city center on the Via della Vigna Nuova, Palazzo Rucellai is one of the oldest and most prestigious patrician residences in Florence. The Palazzo Rucellai has been home to the Rucellai family for more than 500 years, and they continue to occupy portions of the building to this day. The building has been refurbished as an educational center complete with computer labs, library, classrooms, student lounges, administrative offices, a large student service center, and wireless internet access throughout the facility. In addition to the vast array of materials found in the ISI library, students will also have access to several other libraries in the surrounding area, including the library of the British Institute.

The second facility, Palazzo Bargagli, was one of the patrician residences of fourteenth-century Florence. Originally in the hands of a famous Florentine banking family, the Bardi, then property of the Sienese Bargagli, it was completely refurbished and modernized in 2009. It is located on Lungarno delle Grazie, one block away from the National Library and near beautiful Piazza Santa Croce.


How to Choose Your Courses

Now the fun part! You get to pick the courses you will take abroad. Review the course information on this page. Once you’ve decided which courses you want to take, fill out the CISabroad Course Selection Worksheet in your online portal.

Course Approval

Make sure to talk with your home university about course approval and get additional classes approved before you go abroad. For example, if you are taking 4 classes abroad, we recommend getting 8 approved. This gives you some flexibility in setting up your class schedule. Think about courses required for your major, but also courses that fulfill your elective requirements.

GPA Requirement

If you find your GPA is lower than the requirement listed at the top of this page, do not despair! Get in touch to let us know your situation. In many cases, there are additional application materials that you can submit to make your case for acceptance.

Choose your courses, making sure to get them approved by your home university and then fill out the Course Selection Worksheet.

Course Information

Semester dates start in late August and January — which nicely parallel the US academic calendar. You can select courses from the following subject areas: art, art history, political science, history, literature, Italian studies, international business, sustainable agriculture/food studies, and interdisciplinary studies in humanities, so you’ll certainly be able to find the courses you need. All non-Italian language courses are taught in English. Please note that all students studying in Florence for the semester must take at least one Italian language course.

New classes are being added all the time, so be sure to check back for updates! ISI courses are designed in a way that allows students to become immersed in the city and to explore the local resources available to them.

Course descriptions:

Fall semester course list
Spring semester course list

Life in Florence

Welcome and Orientation

Once you have arrived and settled into your apartment in Florence, you will attend two comprehensive orientation sessions. The first will be led by staff from your academic institution in Florence and may cover topics such as academics, student life, housing, and health and safety. You will then participate in a second session, presented by your CISabroad onsite staff. We’ll introduce you to Florence, help you become familiar with many practical matters relating to your stay in the city, equip you with tips and suggestions for a safe, healthy, successful, fun term abroad as well as answer any questions you may have. Specific topics covered during orientation may include housing, health and safety, emergency response and the Italian Permit to Stay process. After orientation, students and onsite staff attend a fabulous (and plentiful!) Welcome Dinner at a well-known Florentine restaurant.

Farewell and Re-entry Program

Towards the end of your study abroad term you may feel a little nervous, or perhaps anxious, at the thought of leaving your new home and returning to your old. If you asked around, you’d find that a lot of study abroad participants share your apprehension. It is not uncommon to wonder what re-entering your home culture will be like after having spent time in a new – and different – culture. To make things a little bit easier, we will come together for a Farewell Event (it includes amazing Italian food, of course!) and talk through some of the things to expect as you return, positive things to focus on as you leave your host country, and essential tools for how best to share your important experience with people back home.

Housing Options

Students studying at International Studies Institute at Palazzo Rucellai will be living in off-campus apartments. These apartments are located in the historical center of the city within a 20-25 minute walk from class. Participants will live in apartments with four to eight students, and bedrooms will range from singles to doubles to triples. Apartments will also have a shared bathroom; kitchen with a refrigerator, stovetop range, and an oven or toaster oven or microwave; a shared living area usually with a TV set; washer, drying racks, iron, ironing board; and sheets, blankets, and pillows.

Local Life

  • Florentine Fridays: On no-class Fridays, we meet for breakfast and explore Florence! Discover markets, museums, art galleries, churches, beautiful gardens, and many of the city’s hidden treasures!
  • Sports Events: Florence is the home of the Fiorentina soccer club. Attend a game and cheer “Forza Viola!” from the stands with the locals.
  • Cooking Class: Attend a cooking or pizza-making class and learn how to cook like a local! Fresh pasta is always on the menu, along with fresh, seasonal produce!
  • Opera: Where better to enjoy a glittery evening performance of La Bohème or Madam Butterfly than in the birthplace of Italian opera? Join us for an evening at Florence’s stunning new opera house!
  • Theatre: Florence is well-known for its many ornate theaters and theater productions. Spend an evening at Teatro Verdi, founded in 1854 at the site of an old prison and listen to a performance by the Orchestra della Toscana. Or attend a Medici Dynasty Show, set in a stunning Baroque church and learn about the cultural heritage left to the city of Florence by 300 years of Medici family rule.

More About Florence

Florence (Firenze in Italian) is a culturally vibrant city located in the heart of Italy’s Tuscany region. Around every corner you’ll encounter jaw-dropping architecture, like the terra-cotta-domed Florence Cathedral. The mild weather makes it ideal for exploring the city on foot—we recommend getting lost so you can meander the streets and interact with the friendly locals.

Thanks to the city's small size, you'll feel like a local in no time. You can explore the historic city center and beyond in less than 30 minutes. Florence is also an art lover’s dream! Must dos: visit the Galleria dell’Accademia—home to Michelangelo’s David, the world-renowned Galleria degli Uffizi, and the iconic Duomo. Explore the lesser-known Boboli Gardens and Palazzo Pitti. Art is a great way to soak in the culture and history of this wonderful city. The views from the Ponte Vecchio and Piazzale Michelangelo will steal your heart, but the food, culture, and people will make you want to stay forever.

To explore outside the city, you can easily hop on a bus and head up to the hillside town of Fiesole. You'll catch a full panoramic view of Florence and enjoy the peaceful Etruscan ruins. Sienna, San Gimignano, and other Tuscan villages are also a short bus ride away. If you have the travel bug, trains and nearby airports make it easy and affordable to travel to Milan, Venice, Rome, and beyond in Europe.

The best way to experience Florence is simply to wander through its wonders. This is how you'll find the hidden gems not mentioned in any guidebook.

Program Excursions

While participating on a CISabroad program, you'll be able to take part in built-in day trips at no additional cost. These trips are subject to change from term to term; listed below are excursions that have run in the past.

CISabroad Study Abroad Semester Program chianti italy excursion vineyard wine tasting

Chianti

Discover quaint towns and villages set in the rolling hills of Chianti and learn about the olive and grape production that makes this region famous. Visit during the harvest season to see the changing colors of fall and sample products at small, family run wineries and oil producers.

Lucca

Strategically located on the Serchio river, Lucca is a famous Tuscan town primarily known for the Renaissance walls that still encircle the historic city center. Strolling or biking along the tops of the wide, tree-lined ramparts remains a favorite pastime for tourists and locals alike. Lucca is also the birthplace of famous Italian composer Giacomo Puccini (La Bohème and Madama Butterfly) and Pope Lucius III.

Pieve di San Leolino

Join in a day of silence, reflection, and spirituality at the parish church of San Leolino, near the Tuscan town of Panzano in Chianti. The original church dates back to 982, and the current structure was erected in the 12th century. You’ll spend the day journaling, reflecting, and working on small-group projects alongside the San Leolino community, away from modern conveniences like cell phones and wifi.


Your Support Staff

Global Advising Team

Travel Tip: We love what we do and want to talk to you! The Global Advising Center is here to help you decide on a program, and complete the Online Application. From the moment you first hear from us be it through a phone call, email or personal visit, you will find that our passion for international education is contagious. We’re ready to launch you abroad.

Molly Bond
Senior Program Coordinator - Italy & South America

Travel Tip: The first chance I have in a new place, I like to either rent a bicycle or go running to get a better feel for my surroundings. Not only does this feel refreshing after time spent on the road or in the air, but it also gives you a great orientation to your destination.

Learn more about Molly

Alessandro Bruno
Site Director in Florence

Travel Tip: Never forget to pack an open mind, a lot of patience, a couple of snacks from home to cure homesickness and last but not least…serenity. Once in town, LOOK UP when walking around. Take a different route to class everyday. Live, love and accept your destination!

Learn more about Alessandro

Program Fees & Dates

Advisor Tip: Please do not book flights until you have received confirmed dates in your acceptance paperwork. Dates posted here are subject to change.

  • Fall 2019
    Application Deadline
    March 15
    Arrival
    August 28
    Departure
    December 14
    PRICE
    Included in Quinnipiac Tuition and Fees
  • Spring 2020
    Application Deadline
    October 1
    Arrival
    January 3 (Estimated)
    Departure
    April 28 (Estimated)
    PRICE
    Included in Quinnipiac Tuition and Fees (Estimated)

CISabroad reserves the right to alter fees at any time due to currency fluctuations and/or fee changes made by our partner universities.

Program Inclusions

As with all study abroad programs, you should count on a few additional expenses.

Program fees are in US dollars and include the following:

  • Full program coordination by CISabroad
  • Visa batch processing & permit to stay (for US citizens only-when available)
  • Books & lab fees (*excluding materials fee such as paint supplies, photography equipment, etc.)
  • Customized orientation program including host university orientation
  • CISabroad site director and university staff support
  • Medical & Accident Insurance
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • Predeparture orientation
  • ISI Grade Report
  • Re-entry Program
  • Excursions: CISabroad sponsored Day Trip, and all ISI sponsored local excursions and activities
  • NYTimes Digital Subscription
  • La Vida Local cultural program