Name: Jesika

Major(s): Art History and Painting & Drawing

Program: Temple University

Where: Rome

When: Fall 2008

Favorite Course: Art History of the High Renaissance

Highlight: Traveling around Europe

Best Excursion: Todi and Titignano

Favorite Dish: Truffle and Pear Ravioli




What was a typical day like for you while abroad?

I walked to class from my apartment.  Most mornings I’d grab a café somewhere since they’re only 80 cents and cappuccinos are only a Euro.  I had classes until 12 which where all onsite.  We’d meet at different locations around the city, and then depending on the class draw, paint, shoot photos, or have a lecture on the history of the art.  After classes I’d have to do my studio assignments until dinner, but some days if the workload was light I’d go out to places I had never been to or go to churches or museums I had yet to see.  Mostly for dinner I’d cook to save money, but some days I’d go out for dinner in the city.  My weekends were all traveling.  We’d get up really early Friday or head out late Thursday night to go all around Italy or twice we left the country (Paris and London).  Then the day would be spent exploring the new town.


How do you see this experience affecting your future?

Just getting to see all the different cities and the feel of all of them is something that is a part of me now and really inspires me to create.  All the different colors and atmosphere and light in each city are definitely part of my main inspiration for my work right now.  I think as an artist it’s important to experience different places because there’s just so much to be inspired by.  Also I loved to travel before but now I think I actually possibly want to live abroad for a while.


Describe your best travel experience. 

Honestly, I can’t pick.  One weekend was spent in Sorrento and Capri.  Another in Paris where I had a picnic by the Eiffel Tower and went to the Louvre for free on a Friday night when it was practically empty.  I went to Pisa, Cinque Terre, and Milan for fall break and got to see the Leaning Tower and eat on the grass next to it.  I hiked the 5 towns of Cinque Terre.  I went to Venice and had a sunset gondola ride, visited all the places in St. Marks and just got to take in how beautiful that city is (while it’s inconvenient…go in October or November when it floods….it’s annoying walking through the squares on tables, but it is absolutely beautiful. It looks like people are walking on water in the shallow areas).  I also went to London and rode the [London] Eye and visited all the museums there for free.  I went to Florence and visited the galleries and spent Thanksgiving there with my family.  It’s impossible to pick one.


What is one piece of advice you would pass on to a student who is about to study abroad? 

Be open to everything…try foods that sounds crazy…do the touristy things but also walk off the normal paths and explore side streets.


How did you fund your study abroad experience? 

Budgeting….I barely ate out for dinner.  I always cooked and the markets are so cheap I got a weeks worth of vegetables and fruits and cheeses for about 15 euro for two people and then maybe 10 more euro at the supermarket.  Make lunches don’t buy them.  This left me tons of money to travel.  I also got to stay in hotels rather than hostels…which is nice cause I never had to worry about the security of my belongings or bed bugs or anything like that.  I then got to spend money in those cities…eat out at some of the nicer restaurants there to get to try all different kinds of food from everywhere.  I used the extra money to go to the attractions in other cities such as going on the London Eye or paying to see the monuments of the Campo dei Miracoli at Pisa.