Rome [Wasn't Built] in 2 Weeks

Hannah Abel
June 25, 2015
Roman Pantheon

Wow.  We're leaving for Spain already?  I keep telling myself that I cannot believe how fast this summer is going by.  I have always known time flies when you're having fun, but this is just what happens in a multi-city program, when you are shuffling from one place to the next and taking in as much of the city as you can before packing up and leaving again.  I have to be honest, though-2 weeks here was perfect.  It gave us just enough time to see everything that we wanted to see, with the right amount of down time, and just enough distance to cure the initial separation anxiety from Paris.  

Coming into Rome, I had high expectations because of all of the great things I was told to see by my friends but felt lost and overwhelmed upon arrival because the city seemed so different and historic than what we were used to.  Luckily though I was able to ease in, enjoy myself and see just how much urban life is incorporated into the ancient city.  And with that, here are my Five Favorites of Rome:

5) Field Studies.  Our Cities as Living Museums and Museums and Cultural Heritage classes have been two of the most relevant, engaging classes that I have taken during my college experience.  The field studies took us to different museums and monuments in the area-which I nicknamed "academic tourism" with my classmates-and gave us stronger, in-depth perspectives as to how Rome has incorporated its history with the rapidly evolving future. 

4) Food.  I am a foodie at heart, and I knew that the food here would be beyond compare.  I was right.  Every meal brought something different to the table-quite literally-and I fell in love with the cuisine, especially Pasta Carbonara, Pizza Margherita, Suppli, Tiramisu, and of course gelato.   

3) Extracurricular Activities.  Because there are currently students here in the Language and Culture and Internship Programs, we had the opportunity to interact with other students studying abroad like ourselves.  A personal favorite of mine was the cooking class that we did during lunch this week, where we got to make and eat the food, but we also got to see a ballet and opera this week as well!

2) City Living.  Unlike Paris, we were housed in an apartment just outside the Vatican City and within walking distance of some of the most famous museums and monuments in the area.  This made it much easier to explore new areas and see more of Rome in a shorter amount of time. 

1) IES Rome.  From the moment we arrived, the IES Rome staff picked up just where Paris BIA left off and made us feel welcome and at home, even arranging a dinner with our professors the night we arrived.  I am so grateful to have met and worked with such incredible staff members throughout the duration of my program so far.

It will be hard to say good-bye tomorrow, but luckily I have thrown my coin into the Trevi Fountain and guaranteed myself another visit to a city that has stolen my heart.  So ciao to Rome and hola Madrid!  May the abroad adventures continue.


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Hannah Abel

Hannah is a rising senior at University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida, majoring in Human and Social Development with minors in Psychology and Education. When she is not in class, Hannah serves as Vice President of Coordinators on the Panhellenic Executive Board and a member of the Student Government Senate as well as being a member of the Homecoming Executive Committee and Kappa Kappa Gamma. While she has been on a safari in Africa and tried fresh sushi in Japan, this will be her first time studying and traveling in Western Europe, a dream of hers since high school. She is excited to document her adventures and hopes to share this blog on the study abroad adventure of a lifetime.

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