So it has been just over a week since I arrived in Italy and think that I am almost adjusted to the day to-day life here! There is so much that I could talk about so I will just give you a brief overview.
Food: First off let me start by saying that if you like carbs, Italian food is for you! Pastas, rolls, and pastries are major staples of my diet these days. On campus you eat three meals a day in the cafeteria where you have several choices for each course. For breakfast I HIGHLY recommend the Nutella filled croissants! If you ever get sick of the food in the cafeteria (which is actually sort of hard to do) there are several great pizzerias within walking distance. The pizzerias are fun because they are typically filled with Italian families and have amazing food!
- Amazing Pizza!
Staying Active: After all the yummy food I just mentioned, staying active is a must! One thing that you notice right away is that Italians walk a lot. I went to Venice last weekend and was a little surprised when my legs were sore after the first day of walking. The other great thing that I have discovered is running. Back in the US is it sometimes hard to find motivation to wake up early to go running, but when you are watching the sunrise over the mountains in the Italian countryside, it is a little easier! We even got together a group of people so we can all motivate eachother!
Class: Classes at CIMBA are a little different from classes back home! For one, they are much, much smaller! My biggest class this semester has around 40 students in it and at my home university the same class would be a 400 person lecture. Because of the size difference you will get to know all of the professors better. A lot of the professors already know most of the names and we have only had 5 days of class! The other big difference is what is expected of you in class. CIMBA has a work hard, play hard philosophy. The professors know that most of campus will be traveling every weekend so they don’t assign very much homework. To make up for this, classes are very participation oriented and attendance is mandatory.
Campus: When walking around campus it is not uncommon for people to stop in their tracks and say things like “wait, is this real?” My roommate and I say it almost every morning when we wake up and look out our window and see Mount Grappa. The city of Paderno is an adorable little town just a few miles from the base of the mountains. The locals are very friendly, especially if you attempt to speak Italian to them! Between the campus and the two Tabacchi (little convenience stores) you have everything you could ever need within a 10 minute walk. There is food, a full gym, a library, an ATM, a café, everything!
Extras: There are so many extra opportunities that CIMBA offers throughout the semester. One of the things that I am most excited for is volunteering to teach elementary school kids English once a week! There are other opportunities through out the semester for things like formal dinners and etiquette training, dinners with Italian families, learning to make pizza, and wine tasting! They are also clubs for things like running, yoga, bible study, yearbook, and so much more. It is definitely not hard to stay busy! Until next time, ciao!