A Day in the Life of a Spring Semester Student in Florence

Apr 5, 2018 10:30:00 AM / by Irene Kanthan

Rachel Cholewinski_Florence

Rachel is an official CAPA blogger for spring 2018, sharing her story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Business Administration major at Merrimack College, she is studying abroad in Florence this semester.

In this week's post, Rachel takes us through a day in her life and what she does during her abroad in Florence this spring semester.


It is hard to sum up a typical week here because I am usually always on the go and doing something new every day. I thought I would try to take everyone along through a “day in the life” of a student here in Florence and some of my favorite places!

Bread and Break Bakery in FlorenceBread and Break Bakery in Florence


My week starts with beginning Italian class on Monday. I usually wake up around 8:30am and have breakfast in my apartment and get ready. Sometimes I’ll stop at a café near my apartments called “Bread and Break” to get a croissant and a cappuccino before class.

Inside Bread and Break Bakery in FlorenceInside Bread and Break Bakery in Florence.

I really enjoy this café because everything is very fresh (made the day of) and the workers don’t speak any English which forces me to order in Italian (sometimes this is difficult so I usually end up pointing to things, but I try)!

At the Oil Shop for Lunch in FlorenceAt the Oil Shop for lunch.

Class starts at 9:50am and ends at 11:30am. After class I’ll go get lunch with my friends at Oil Shop, highly recommend (favorite sandwich place and best ice coffee)!! I found Oil Shop through friends recommendations, it is definitely a student go to place and it located close to CAPA. After l usually go back CAPA or to Art Studio to finish my work for my water coloring class! After I’ll go grocery shopping for the week and cook dinner in my apartment and then meet up with my friends!

Walking HomeWalking home.


Tuesday I have Renaissance Art History from 9am-12pm! Sometimes in this class we’ll visit a museum around Florence that relates to the topic were learning about that week. I’ll go get lunch after and then I have Italian class till 2:40pm!

Dinner with my GANZO Family in FlorenceHaving dinner at my GANZO family's home.

On Tuesday night I go to my GANZO Family for dinner, which is one of my favorite things to do during the week (planning on writing a blog post in the future about them). I usually stay a couple of hours, play games with the kids and practice my Italian! Going to my GANZO family has encouraged me to practice my Italian. Usually we’ll switch on and off weekly between speaking English at dinner and Italian. The kids, Emma and Eduardo, are trying to learn English so I’ll help them with their homework and studying for their English exams.


Wednesday is again another early morning! I have International Finance from 9am-12pm which gives me the rest of the afternoon to have some free time! I’ll usually go to café or to the Florence Public Library to finish up some work I have or plan an upcoming weekend trip!

View from the Library in FlorenceView from the library.

I wish I found the library earlier because it became one of my favorite places to study or just meet up with friends. Also the library has a café one the 3rd floor and you can grab a snack and get some work done. The floors are half inside half outside so you can sit outside on a nice day and have a perfect view of the Duomo, which makes studying a lot better!

At Fiesole with My Friends
At Fiesole with my friends.

Later in the day, if it is nice out we’ll usually go watch the sunset either at the Piazza Michelangelo or go to Fiesole (a small town on the hillside near Florence). In Fiesole there is a hidden scenic view that looks over all of Florence, it is one of my favorite places to watch the sunset with friends. You can take the local bus to get there, it is little far but so worth it!


Thursday is my longest day with Italian from 9:50- 11:30am and then I have Water Coloring from 12-3pm! Water Coloring is one of my favorite class and I always look forward to going and seeing my Professor Jamie! We have an assignment in class to create postcards of each place we’ve been.

My Water Coloring Travel Post Card AssignmentA picture of my Water Coloring assignment where I created a post card of every place I have traveled so far.

It has been my favorite assignment and I take my water coloring stuff everywhere I go. Water Coloring has become a new hobby of mine and I am so glad I was able to have the opportunity to learn it while abroad! After this class I’ll get food and get ready to leave for a weekend trip! We usually leave for weekend trips on Thursday night, so my week in Florence is cut short! But it is always filled with so many activities and new memories with friends! Can’t wait to see what the last couple of weeks have in store!!

Thanks Rachel!

Rachel's journey continues every Thursday so stay tuned.

Learn More about the CAPA Florence Program

Topics: Florence, Italy, Study Abroad, College Life