When in Rome

“When in Rome, do as the Romans do,” the popular saying goes. After this spring semester, however, many may be saying, “When in Rome, do as the Lycoming College students do.”

Two Lycoming juniors, John Piazza and Jehiel Boner, are spending their semester in Rome, Italy, at John Cabot University. The two found the university through online research and spent much of the fall semester applying. As the first students from Lycoming to ever attend the University, they had their fair share of challenges.

“The process was considerably more difficult because we weren’t affiliated,” says Piazza, “but it was definitely was worth it, and the Lycoming faculty members were extremely helpful when we needed their assistance. Hopefully, our experiences encourage more students to study in Italy, because it is amazing.”

“The university scheduling is designed so that a student can study within a classroom setting, but it also does not prohibit your ability to travel,” explains Boner. “We can make the most out of our time abroad and have learning experiences outside of the classroom.”

Boner, a business-marketing major and digital communications minor at Lycoming, is taking introduction to Italian, international marketing, traditional photography and corporate finance.

Piazza, a finance and economics double major, is taking industrial organization economics, intermediate macroeconomics, international economics, introduction to Italian and business law.

Although the duo has seen travel set-backs due to winter storms in Italy – including the largest snowfall Rome has seen in more than 25 years – they have big plans for their time abroad. “I hope to learn about a completely different culture and way of life, and use that to better understand my own culture and ways of life,” remarks Boner.

“I want to visit the towns where my mother and father’s families came from,” says Piazza. “I also hope to return with a photography portfolio worthy of exhibiting at shows.”

Recently, the pair traveled to the city of Napoli with a group of fellow study abroad students. The journey required a two and a half hour train ride through the Italian country side. Once there, the group toured local shops and merchants and visited castles. Their favorite destination was the Sanserveo Chapel, which unfortunately for the two artsy travelers, did not allow photography.

Piazza and Boner are maintaining a blog about their time in Rome and other cities in Europe. To check out updates and pictures, click here

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