SAI recently caught up with SAI Ambassador Alexis, who took some time to answer questions about her time in Rome.
What is your favorite memory from studying abroad?
My favorite memory from my time abroad is an odd one. It was my first trip outside my host city, Rome, with three of my roommates from my program (who are now my best friends) and we went to Venice for the annual carnival. We had done so much research before on what to wear and what to expect. However, it turned out nothing like we predicted. The first night we were the only ones in masks and over the top dresses. The very next night we decided to wear more casual clothes to assimilate more. Of course, we did not know the second night is when everyone would dress up to celebrate. Although we were embarrassed at first, it allowed us to realize that you must travel to fully understand the culture. The internet simply cannot describe the culture. It still is a story we tell when we want to make someone laugh.
What does your study abroad experience mean to you?
It sincerely means everything to me. It has impacted my life in undescribable ways. Being abroad felt like a complete natural high, I was surrounded by beautiful sights and an amazing culture in Rome. I cannot put it into words, it is just a feeling. I fell in love with the way of life in Italy. It has become apart of me and I intend on returning.
How has studying abroad impacted your life goals?
I intend on one of the following: attending graduate school abroad or accepting my first job position abroad. I would love to spend a longer period in Europe because it felt like home. It has entirely altered everything I previously thought I wanted and needed. The concept is not foreign to me and I am very grateful that I received this knowledge through my abroad semester.
Alexis was an SAI Rome spring 2018 student from Virginia Commonwealth University.