Home Sweet Rome

I can see the Ancient City in the distance as my plane descends into Rome on this Sunday afternoon. I can’t keep track of all the excited thoughts flying through my head at light speed. What am I going to do? How am I going to take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime experience? I know I am going to grow, I just wonder how. I’m going to become a Roman for the next few months of my life. I’ll get used to the hectic style of the Italians, and hopefully that style will rub off on me. People say the Italians don’t get much done. I think they’re busy getting life done.

            A year ago, I had applied to this program in the Notre Dame Study Abroad department. That next March, four months or so later, to my elation, I got my acceptance letter. Notre Dame sends students all over the globe to exchange programs for the semester, a year, or a summer. It’s become tougher to get in for Spring semester because most students want to be in Indiana for the Fall semester because of our football program. In Rome, Notre Dame students studied at John Cabot University, located in Trastevere by Ponte Sisto. Our apartments were about a ten-minute walk behind the Vatican.

 On the taxi ride into Rome, I could already tell four months were going to be too short. I got into an argument with a girl who believed the Vittorio Emanuele monument was the capitol building. It isn’t and I’m right and she owes me two drinks but I’ve never seen her since. Oh well. 


Crystal Cascante, University of Florida

Happy Backpackers

I've been in Europe since the beginning of January and have traveled every weekend. This Easter Weekend was by far the best one. The hostel was perfect and super convenient, I made a ton of new friends, and our guides (Andy, Rhianne, and Elena) made sure we saw absolutely everything in the city. The meals included were all absolutely delicious, and Andy even brought snacks every once in a while to hold us over in between meals. We were given our Easter Mass tickets the night before and strategically planned to be in the front for mass. We followed Andy's suggestions and got to sit in the very front for Mass. The wait was worth it and so was every cent of the trip's cost. I barely spent any of my own money, just on transportation to and from the airport, gelato, and food on my last day there. I would 100% recommend this company to all of my friends!

Crystal Cascante, University of Florida ~ AIFS London, Spring 2016

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