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The following post is the last of a four-part series regarding the SJMC’s 2017 study abroad trip to London and Rome, contributed by graduate student, Joshua Morrison. Be sure to check out the previous three articles if you haven’t already!
In our last post about the 2017 London/Europe study abroad summer session, we talked about how this year’s students were provided the unique opportunity to explore Rome. What we haven’t yet had the opportunity to discuss are the wondrous venues for cultural exploration that the city offers.
With a history spanning over 2500 years, Rome is among the oldest inhabited places in Europe. Its history, both ancient and modern, is riddled with reasons to be excited.
Among the most marvelous sites students had the chance to visit were the Colosseum and the Roman Forums. These ancient structures are unlike anything one might encounter in the United States, and, despite having seen pictures over the years, students were in awe.
“Being able to see it in person was so different!” said senior Ashley Johnson. “It was amazing.”
Senior Victor Z. Glenn was particularly excited to visit the Forums because of their proximity to Palatine Hill, a significant landmark in Roman mythology.
“It is the alleged home of the wolves that raised Remus, one of the founders of Rome,” he said.
Some students, like senior Kaley Consford, were most interested in a more modern attraction: Cinecitta, known as the Hollywood of Rome. She was, in particular, excited to get a first-hand look at film sets.
“While walking around, I truly felt like I was in a ghost town,” she said. “I would try and imagine a live movie scene happening, or even imagine if the sets were real.”
While in Italy, many students used their free day to take trips to other corners of Italy.
Senior Brooke Vega spent her time in a Tuscan village, soaking up traditional Italian scenery and enjoying the cuisine.
“The view was amazing from both sides of the village…fields of olive trees, vineyards and the golden grass,” she said. “We had a delicious three-course lunch at a winery.”
Denver Donchez, a senior, spent her time in Florence and was particularly taken with the adventure that comes with traveling without a guide in a foreign city.
“If you’ve never been lost in a foreign city, I would wholeheartedly recommend it,” she said. “There’s just something about being completely immersed in a foreign city that forces you to embrace uncertainty.”