The Washington State Community College Consortium for Study Abroad (WCCCSA) comprises of 18 participating member colleges who work together to help their students study abroad. They selected AIFS Customized to host their Spring 2017 semester in Florence. Alongside Italian Life and Culture, they are taking classes in Drawing and Art History, taught by Scott Bailey, head of the Art Department at Wenatchee Valley College, a WCCCSA member college.
We’re already in week 5 of the WCCCSA study abroad program in Florence and things are going full steam ahead!
Midway through April we braved the 463 steps of Brunelleschi’s cupola; although it was quite a hike up to the Dome, it revealed some amazing views of the city. (See below – definitely worth the climb!)
Siena & San Gimignano
Towards the end of April we had a daytrip to Siena & San Gimignano. A guided tour of Siena was followed by some free time in the medieval hilltop town of San Gimignano, and perhaps most noteworthy, the chance to taste gelato made by the Gelato World Champions! The next day was spent exploring the five coastal towns of the Cinque Terre, hiking and going for a dip in the Ligurian sea. Not a bad start to Springtime in Italy!
Basilica of Santa Croce
This week in our Italian Life and Culture class we visited the Basilica of Santa Croce – Michelangelo and Galileo’s remains are buried here. We also marveled at the extravagance of the Pitti Palace (see photo above), the former home of the Medici family.
We also got our hands dirty at a local cooking school. Students learnt how to make ravioli filled with spinach and ricotta cheese, vegetable soufflé and a tasty panna cotta for dessert. Che buono!
We are looking forward to the weeks ahead with more events like these.
Stay tuned for more updates from Florence as we move into the busy summer season!