Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Studying in SAIS Europe: Meredith P.

This week, we’ve asked our student bloggers to talk about some of the benefits of studying at their respective campuses.  Today, Meredith P. talks about SAIS Europe.

What are the benefits to living/studying in Bologna, Italy?  What were some of the highlights of your year at SAIS Europe?
There were so many benefits about spending your first year at SAIS at the Bologna campus that I find it hard to pick just one. To be part of the close-knit community that forms at the SAIS Bologna Center and Bologna’s central location, making travel around Italy unbelievably convenient, are just two of the many highlights of the Bologna campus. I found the opportunity to live in Italy and experience a different lifestyle for nine months to be the most invaluable experience. Being in DC this year has really made me miss the more carefree, lower stress environment in Italy. Bologna is unique city, known in Italian as “the educated, the red, the fat,” a description that accurately summarizes the best aspects of the city: the academic culture, the beautiful architecture, and the delicious food. Whenever it rains in DC I get extremely nostalgic for Bologna and its porticoes. Walking through the historic red brick city every day seemed almost unreal. For me though, the food alone would have made the year in Bologna worthwhile. Some of my favorite memories include seemingly endless dinners with friends at local osterias or enjoying an aperitivo after a long day. While in Italy, I was lucky enough to get a job as an English teacher for an Italian family. Once a week I would go to the family’s house, eat homemade Italian food, and discuss Italian politics and culture in English. This experience really brought together all of my favorite things about living in Bologna.
–Meredith P., SAIS Admissions Student Blogger