Sweet Beginnings
Nancy, Florence, Spring 2017
February 7, 2017

I have never worked harder for anything in my life like I did for this study abroad trip. I spent a year doing scholarship applications, working at my work-study job everyday, and helping my siblings with anything for a couple bucks. I had several departure meetings at school and interviews to prepare for this amazing trip.


Hike to Piazzale Michelangelo

Fast forward to January 24th and I find myself in a different country not knowing the language, people, or food. That’s when it hit me. I had made a huge mistake. How was a first-generation student going to survive four months on the other side of the world? I started thinking of everything back home I found comfort in. I already knew my favorite places to eat, who to hang out with, and the simplest of things like finding my way home.


I had to play tourist and take a picture with Ponte Vecchio as the background!

My first day was filled with what-ifs.  In just one week all of my doubts disappeared.


Pizza has become my main food group!

Since arriving, I have tackled Italian department and grocery stores. I have enjoyed Italian nightlife and legal drinking (drink responsibly!). I have experienced a new way of dining and I have become a regular at my neighborhood pizzeria. I have consumed an obscene amount of gelato and pasta. I have gotten lost more times in one day than I ever have in my lifetime. I have walked to school for the first time. I have used currency that I was not familiar with. I have learned to appreciate a new way of doing things. The list goes on.


If you wake up early enough, you will be able to see Florence without all of the tourists!

It has only been seven days and I am sure that this is what I wanted to do. I have no dout that this study abroad experience will make me grow and appreciate the world so much more than if I would’ve stayed back in the U.S. I am so excited to experience more of Florence and the wonderful things that come with it.


My lovely roommates: Shannon, Maddie, and Monica

Stay tuned!

Nancy is spring 2017 Colorado State University student at Florence University of the Arts.

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About SAI

SAI is dedicated to providing academic and cultural learning experiences abroad that enhance global awareness, professional development and social responsibility. We concentrate our programs in Europe, with a focus on in-depth learning of individual European countries and their unique global role in the geopolitical economy, humanities, and in the arts.