Essays & Midterms & Spring Break Oh My!

Written by jayneclairevincent March 1, 2024

Time has been flying by here in Paderno! Other than being in class, the past two weeks have been filled with studying for midterms, planning spring break travels, writing a couple of essays, and spending time with friends either at one of the local caffés or at the local pizzeria Al Sole.

My friends and I have mentioned multiple times this past week how we cannot seem to wrap our heads around the fact that we have been in Italy for six weeks now! It’s just so surreal. Other than the first weekend, when we had to attend classes, I have traveled every weekend and been to a total of six different cities in Italy so far. Life does not seem real. When strolling down some cobblestone roads, my friends and I jokingly sing the phrase, “I think I like this little life,” because these days have simply been so sweet.  

Lately, the weekdays have been dedicated to tackling assignments so that the weekends can be lighthearted, relaxing, and full of laughter. There seems to be a mutual understanding with all the CIMBA students – we grind out the homework Monday through Wednesday then we all hang out on Thursday night before everyone parts ways on the weekends to travel.

When my professors mentioned that midterms were approaching, I genuinely questioned if we had even covered enough material to be tested on. However, once I started flipping through my textbooks, making study guides, and reviewing notes, I realized that I had really learned a few things while being here! 

Walking into this semester, I was unsure how much studying I would be doing here. Of course, I read every previous blog post that had been posted on CIMBA’s website to get an idea of what school would be like. Did I believe the students who stated that I would have to set aside time and study for my classes here at CIMBA? No, not really. For some reason, I thought they were slightly dramatic, but low and behold, they were right. However, now that I am here, I find myself spending more time preparing for quizzes and midterms than I did back in the States. 

One random thing I will note (which came as a surprise to most of us students) is that tests here in Italy are a tad bit different than those I have taken in the States. There are no multiple-choice tests, only short answers, which is one of the main reasons I find myself studying more. Learning to retain and share in full sentences what I have learned instead of just quickly checking off a box has been challenging but also fruitful. 

Now that midterms are behind us, I have fixed my eyes on spring break! My friends and I just recently finalized our plans for the ten-day trip. We decided to make the most of the ten days, so we are going to Milan, Barcelona, Portugal, Paris, and Nice. It will be a whirlwind, but we are all so stoked! It is a lot more tedious and complicated to plan out trips than I was expecting. When my friends and I met to brainstorm and search for flights for spring break, we had anticipated spending one to two hours planning, but before we knew it, we had spent four hours just looking online, trying to narrow down what exactly we wanted to do for the break.  

Once we finally got everything booked and scheduled, a huge weight was lifted off all our shoulders! Now that it is officially week 6, all anyone can think of is making it through the next three days till the break begins!