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Make Florence Your Classroom

Explore and thrive in this magnificent global city. Studying abroad in Florence offers something for everyone—experience its passionate sporting culture, feast on delicious Tuscan cuisine, and wander through the many museums in the city!

Quick Facts:

  • Most Populous City in Tuscany
  • Il Duomo took 140 years to build
  • Attracts 13 million visitors annually
  • Is the "cradle of the Renaissance"
  • Expanding multiculturalism 
  • Roberto Benign from "la Vita e’ bella” is from Florence
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Preparation

Picture yourself taking a mouth-watering bite of authentic Italian pasta in Florence, admiring art in the “Cradle of the Renaissance”, walking along the Arno River and studying beneath frescoes on the ceilings of CAPA’s Florence study abroad center inside a 15th century palace. With a bit of preparation, this can become your reality. CAPA’s team of study abroad experts and travel enthusiasts are excited to help you on your way, making sure first that you know how to study abroad! With a checklist in hand, going from considering what your life could look like in Italy to standing humbly beside Il Duomo will seem much more achievable.

First, there will be some admin: application forms, applying for a passport, chatting with your advisor and considering an internship, among other things. You’ll want to plan a budget to make sure you have enough euros to last the duration of your study abroad adventure. Think about scholarships and any other finance options available. Once you’re accepted, it’s then time to think about what to pack. Then hop over and look at our blog for solid budgeting tips from our finance team, a list of helpful apps and inspirational Florence stories.

Why Florence

Florence must be one of the most photogenic cities in the world (in our opinion, anyway!) and this Tuscan gem has been voted, several years in a row, as the best city in Europe by Travel + Leisure readers. It’s small enough that it’s not overwhelming to explore its cobblestoned piazzas by foot, yet it packs a punch (or many) when it comes to art, history, fashion, and food. 

If the names Donatello, Michelangelo, and Leonardo ring a bell (and not because of childhood television), you’ll be thrilled to see their original works in person, but there’s a thriving contemporary art scene to discover too. History trickles through every building and down every alleyway. Locals tend to dress with taste and style. You’ll be able to speak with them, including a host family if you wish, take Italian classes, and sign up for an internship or volunteer work - all of which will give you a well-rounded mix of opportunities to learn or improve your language skills. And if pasta, pizza, and gelato make your list of favorite foods, you’ll taste some of the best you’ve ever had while you’re in Italy.

Food

Pasta and pizza don’t come any better than they do in Italy, but there’s much more to savor in Florence, and it’s not all carbs. In fact, the Mediterranean diet is full of fresh veggies alongside other staples like olive oil and delicious cheeses. There’s crostini di legato (chicken liver crostini), fettunta (fresh bread drizzled with fresh olive oil after the harvest), comfort foods like pappa al pomodoro (tomato soup) and ribollita (made of cabbage, beans and bread), and the classic panzanella and pinzimonio. Schiacciata con l’uva makes a delicious treat and the gelato opens a whole new world. Food is uncomplicated with a focus on quality ingredients.

 

If you’re cooking as a student in Florence, visit the markets often, such as Sant’Ambrogio, a favorite among local Florentines. You’ll find those quality ingredients at affordable prices and can follow simple Italian recipes easily in your apartment. Plus, the CAPA Florence program’s My Global City Events include a pasta making class to help you learn to cook like an Italian. And for nights you prefer to enjoy a meal out, our staff will happily share their restaurant recommendations, plus you’ll find the top picks from CAPA alumni on our blog. 

Culture & Activities

From ancient frescoes preserved on ceilings across the city (including CAPA classrooms) to playful art that adorns many street signs (you can visit the artist CLET’s studio), there’s creativity everywhere you look in Florence. Impressively, UNESCO has noted that a third of the world’s art treasures are at home here. Take time to explore cathedrals, museums and galleries, like the famous Uffizi Gallery, home to well-known masterpieces, and the lesser known La Specola, which houses very realistic anatomical wax models from centuries ago. For fashion enthusiasts, pay a visit to the Gucci Museum or a browse San Lorenzo’s leather markets. Head across the Arno to visit an artisan workshop and explore the quaint streets of The Oltrarno. If the season is right, walk under the hanging Wisteria in the secret garden of Giardino Bardini. Rub the nose of Fontana del Porcellino for good luck. Simply walk the city’s streets, soaking in the architecture and history and enjoying the piazzas. Climb 463 steps to the top of the Duomo. See one of the best views ever from Piazzale Michelangelo. Enjoy Gusto Pizza while you catch the sun setting over Ponte Vecchio and the Arno. And eat all the gelato.

Scholarships & Finance

There are many different types of scholarships, grants and finance options to explore that can help you reach your goal of studying abroad in Florence. CAPA’s pre-departure staff will be able to guide you in the right direction so you can decide which opportunities are best suited to your personal situation and find out how to apply.

We do our best make study abroad accessible to everyone and to provide funding to those who need it. Need-based options include CAPA’s own need-based scholarship, the FEA-CAPA Access Scholarship, a grant from one of the colleges or universities who are affiliated with CAPA, and third-party options such as the Gilman Scholarship. CAPA also offers a blogger/vlogger grant that select students receive in exchange for creating content for our blog about their study abroad experience, a diversity advocate grant, an accommodations fund for students with disabilities and an HBCU grant for students from Historically Black Colleges and Universities. There are also many other study abroad scholarships available that are not direct CAPA initiatives. Research early as they usually require you to apply up to a year in advance. You may also be eligible to for financial aid.

Interning Abroad

Set yourself apart from your peers by interning abroad for credit in the enchanting city of Florence! You’ll develop new skills, learn how to effectively articulate these to grad schools and hiring managers, and positively impact your future career in a global powerhouse of business, art and fashion. You’ll collaborate with and learn from Florentine locals in one of the world’s most beautiful cities, expand your professional network overseas, gain an international perspective on your field and an appreciation for diverse working cultures and practices in a global city.

CAPA’s internship program is well-established with a network of over 2,000 internship sites across the globe in private and nonprofit sectors and in just about every field. We work hard to place you somewhere that fits your academic major, personal interests and abilities. CAPA Florence students* intern in industries ranging from marketing to event management and hospitality! Internship placements are included in the cost of the CAPA Florence program, so don’t miss out on a fantastic opportunity! Chat with an admissions advisor to learn more about the placement process and be sure to read about other CAPA Florence students’ internship experiences on our blog.

*Students must have at least two semesters of Italian to participate.

Education Abroad

Studying abroad in Florence doesn’t mean sacrificing quality, credits or academic integrity. CAPA courses and faculty-led programs are rigorous; we run them in strict adherence to the Forum on Education Abroad’s Standards of Good Practice. You’ll play an active role in your own development while you’re abroad, working toward what we call our Student Learning and Development Outcomes (or SLDOs). From personal and professional development to urban environments, our five SLDOs will guide everything you do as a CAPA student. You’ll have plenty of time for fun and exploration too, and those things are also incorporated into (and a very important part of!) the CAPA Florence experience. One example is our My Global City social events and cultural activities, including walking through the secret rooms at Palazzo Vecchio and hiking in the Tuscan hills. We also take your experience in Italy from international to global, with collaborative projects that involve working directly with CAPA students in other cities around the world through our innovative globally networked technology.

See our blog to read our Thoughts on Education Abroad column and take a deep dive into specific areas of academic focus from the perspective of past CAPA Florence students and faculty.

Language

Whether you’re a fluent speaker or have never even said caio, you’ll be able to live la dolce vita and immerse yourself in Italian culture and language when you study abroad in Florence. Studying in Florence offers a plethora of opportunities to learn and improve your Italian language skills, from language courses and internship options to daily activities and cultural events. Plus, you can choose to deepen your Italian immersion through an optional homestay with a local family or the CAPA Ganzo! program that partners you with a local family to spend time with on the weekends. The city of Florence is also very friendly to English speakers and all CAPA courses are taught in English, so whether you have a background in the Italian language or not, you will quickly feel at home in Florence.

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CAPA's Florence Center

CAPA Florence Center
Via dei Pandolfini, 20
Florence, Italy 50122

Lorenzo Ciccarelli, CAPA Florence Resident Director

There is nothing new I can tell you about Florence because the rest you will discover on your own day after day. An incredible escalation of cultural experiences. I was your age when I embarked in my fist real study abroad immersion. It shaped my life and defined my career. I met some extraordinary people that I can list among my best friends today. I wish this can be the same for you as it was for me. You are choosing Florence to be your destination and I’m sure Florence will become your second home.
 

Course Credit

Earn 6 credits in the Summer and 12-15 credits in the Fall and Spring. Courses are 3 credits unless otherwise noted; internships are 3 or 6 credits. Credits are issued by the State University of New York at Oswego.

Housing

You can opt to live in a homestay or in shared apartments. All housing is centrally located within commuting distance to the CAPA center. 

Local Transportation

You will receive a bus pass that provides you with complimentary public transportation in Florence throughout your program.

Student Activities

Social events including an arrival reception, mid-term dinner and a farewell ceremony. Plus experience a variety of immersive social experiences throughout your program.

Internships

Earn 6 credits with an optional part-time internship placement and weekly workshops for professional development. Note: you must have at least 2 semesters of Italian language to participate.

My Global City

This program offers a variety of immersive social experiences during your program such as a night at the Opera or a soccer match at the Florence Stadium.

Excursions

Full-day excursions to Siena, famous for its art, history, and Palio horse race, and to the walled town of San Gimignano, with its 14 medieval towers.

Insurance

All students receive medical, travel, and accident insurance. The cost of this insurance is included in your program fee.

Support

Our team is available  to assist and support you 24/7 with any urgent situations. We maintain a comprehensive health and safety plan to ensure you have a safe and productive learning experience. 

EXPLORE YOUR TERM OPTIONS

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SEE WHAT'S HAPPENING IN FLORENCE

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Through CAPA Florence, I was set up with an apartment with local Italian neighbors one block from the best gelato place in town, courses relevant to the city, other awesome students to share my experience with, a museum pass so I could see the David as many times as I wanted, and a supportive staff willing to help out with anything!
Dee Liang
University of Colorado at Boulder