Students Share Their Stories

Student Blogs

We invite you to follow the blog of Gwendelyn Sawyer '17, who is studying in Rome this semester.

Also, visit the blogs of students who studied in Rome during the 2013-2014 academic year.

Rome Campus Feature Story in the Assumption Alumni Magazine

Read the article on "Rome Sweet Home” in the Winter 2014 issue

Student & Faculty Testimonials

Joelle DiDomenico, ’14
Participant Spring 2013

“I would highly recommend going to the Rome campus. It is an experience of a lifetime. I learned so many things about myself while abroad . I am a completely different person now. I see things in a broader perspective. I enjoy life so much more and appreciate the little beauties that exist in my daily life. The Rome campus was.

“I loved Rome. The campus was a home away from home in a great location, a little community right outside the city where we felt comfortable and welcomed by the natives. The locals began to recognize us and help us learn the language.”

“I loved the trips we went on, especially the Aquinas trip Prof. Gobel brought us on that consisted of traveling to about 6 different cities in 24 hours that Thomas Aquinas lived in. The best part was Art History, the city was literally our classroom!I also loved Florence and being able to live there for two weeks.”

Jenna Warren, ’14
Participant Fall 2013

“By far my favorite part about taking classes in Rome is the out-of-classroom-experience. Not only are we learning from all that Rome has to offer but we're witnessing it firsthand. I have really been able to blossom as a student and learn an incredible amount.”

“The sheer amount of history that engulfs me as we travel around Rome is overwhelming. It's unlike any history we study in America. When I stood where the emperor used to sit in the Colosseum, I was overwhelmed by the events that occurred in this exact spot hundreds and hundreds of years ago. These are times like this that the history completely consumes me.”

“Of course, I do not want to forget to mention the FANTASTIC gelato and INCREDIBLE food. The culture is one of a kind. The priorities of the culture really struck me and I have to say, I'm definitely conforming to their culture.”

“I would absolutely recommend going to Rome. The courses that you take at Assumption will be academically gratifying but experiencing Rome is an academic, cultural and personal journey that I would not have wanted to miss. When are you going to get the chance to spend three months in Italy? Plus, Assumption has really created an incredibly well-developed program. The cook is INCREDIBLE and the all-inclusive excursions are an aspect of this program that students would not find anywhere else.”

Tracy Baldelli, ’15
Participant Spring 2013

“We traveled to Cinque Terre which is up north on the coast, consisting of 5 small villages. It was breathtaking. We also traveled to Venice for the weekend as well as Urbino, found in the northern mountains. Professor Gobel took us to Gaeta, Pompei and Naples. We saw the ruins in Pompeii as well as stopping along on our trip to give presentations about Thomas Aquinas. I managed to visit and experience over 20 cities within Italy.”

“I would most definitely recommend this to others. One of the main reasons why I chose Assumption was for the community feeling that it offers. This community component flourishes at the Rome Campus because it is such a small unique program that not many universities offer. Being able to take classes and to live together with students and professors, brought the Worcester community abroad.”

Jessica Reimers ’14
Participant Spring 2013

“The Rome campus wasn't just a study abroad. It was a home where I lived with family. The students, the professors, our cook, and the countless others who we saw everyday became like our extended family, they made our experience ten times better. The Rome campus is perfect for those who love the feeling of family, much like we get at our home Assumption campus in Worcester."

Kaitlyn Cardey ’15
Participant Spring 2013

“This trip was full of amazing memories and people. One memory that sticks out is when Pope Francis was elected pope. It was a Wednesday and a group of us went down to the Vatican because we wanted to see the smoke at least once. We were sure that it was going to be black but we weren’t going to be able to go down the next morning due to our class schedule and we heard that the white smoke was going to happen then. So, when we saw the black smoke, we weren’t surprised."

"Then, all of a sudden, the smoke turned white! We couldn’t believe what we saw, yet, we all grabbed each other and ran as far up as we could; which was about 100 feet or so from the barrier. All around us people were screaming, “VIVA IL PAPA!!!” The crowd was going wild and it was getting bigger and bigger by the minute. It was absolutely amazing…then the Cardinal came out on the balcony."

"I was just starting the process of learning Italian and I didn’t know any Latin so I had no idea what he said other than, “Habemus Papam!” and “Francesco.” The crowd went absolutely insane when they mentioned the name that the new Pope had chosen."

"When the Cardinal stepped back inside, he did it among cheers of “VIVA IL PAPA!!” and “PAPA FRANCESCO!!” And when Pope Francesco finally stepped out onto the balcony, the crowd was chanting, screaming, waving, and jumping. I have never been in a crowd that rowdy that was able to be silenced by one man speaking. When Pope Francesco asked for us all to pray for him I swear that you could’ve heard a pin drop, the square was that silent. The whole experience of that night was overwhelming and awesome! It’s hard to find words to describe it, they pale in comparison to the actual experience.”

“My advice for Rome would be: don't be afraid to try new things, getting lost is the best way to learn where you are. If you're afraid to get lost, you'll waste your entire trip. Rome, at first, seems big, confusing, and scary but as you get to know it you'll find that it's really smaller that you first thought. Getting lost is all part of the experience.”

Eloise Knowlton,
Director of Study Abroad

“Students returning from a semester in the Rome Campus traditionally place into Italian III, after only one semester of study in Rome.”

Lance Lazar,
2014-2015 Director of the Rome Campus

“It is especially satisfying to teach students about European culture and civilization while in Italy. Every footstep is an exploration of the world’s grandest classroom, where the events, topics, and personalities come alive, because this was the environment in which it all took place.”

“It is a delight for faculty as well as students to live and work together in the Rome Campus. The experience breaks down the ‘walls of the classroom’ like nothing else can, enabling students to make connections with their learning in ways that are impossible outside of this environment.”

Student Galleries

View some of the images captured by recent students in Rome and throughout Italy.