Hey everyone! My name is Lauren Wyse and I am studying abroad in Florence, and loving every second of it! I have been in Italy since August 11th, so a little over a month, and I’m finally feeling pretty adjusted. I came 3 weeks before the program started, and spent two of those weeks vacationing in different spots of Italy with my family, and the last week I spent exploring Florence with a friend from home who is also studying here. I really feel that this helped my transition a lot. I also liked the fact that I had a week here to get my bearings before my program began and all the students came, because I knew that once that happened things would be really hectic… but lucky for the PC education students, they had me as their own personal tour guide!
I’ve had so much fun since I came here! I have taken lots of weekend trips already to places such as Perugia, Assisi, Cinque Terre (all in Italy), the French Riviera, and Munich, Germany for Oktoberfest! There are a lot of tour companies here that are geared towards college students studying abroad and most of their trips are all inclusive which is really nice because it takes the pressure off of you having to plan activities, hostels, and transportation. That way you get to explore Europe… because why wouldn’t you when everything is so close?!
As for school, I love all of my classes! I am especially excited to start practicum next week and meet my Italian students! I can’t wait to experience it all and be able to see how the school system here differs from what we are used to in America. Luckily I have awesome teachers here that I know are here to help me with the transition.
Some advice that I have to all PC students is that if you have the chance to study abroad through this program, TAKE IT! I can already tell how much I appreciate this opportunity. I know the experience I gain here will help me in many ways after I graduate and begin to search for teaching jobs. Additionally I will have firsthand experience in teaching an entire class of English Language Learners, which we all know is rapidly increasing in our American schools. It may sound corny, but studying abroad is such a unique experience that really allows you to find yourself in ways that you cannot while being in the comfort zone of American culture. I am so happy with my decision to study in Florence through the PC Education Program!